Professor Leonard, PhD, Program Director, 516-463-5440
Associate Professor Gales, PhD, Program Adviser
Linguistics is the systematic, scientific study of language. Linguistics has many subfields, including the history and relationship among languages, the study of meaning, grammar and context, the sound patterns of language, the interplay between language and society, the role of language and cognition in human evolution, the importance of language in interpersonal and intergroup communication, and the significance of linguistic analysis in law. It is language that most clearly separates humans from all other species on the planet. Human affairs revolve around language. Linguistics enables students to understand the inner workings of this most special human tool: how and why communication happens or fails to happen, how language is used to support people in groups, how the structure of language is the structure of human intelligence.
Linguistics prepares a student for many possible occupations. Linguistics gives language students a deeper understanding of how their language works. Linguists often go into language and computer-related fields. TESOL students teach English at all levels, and all over the globe. Anthropologists consider linguistics to be one of the core fields of anthropology. Linguistics helps those in legal professions to use language more precisely, and to better understand manipulation and deception in legal applications.