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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics


Courses: Linguistics

BA/L (Q100)

► Watch the Linguistics course film.


Linguistics is the systematic study of human language. Superficially, there’s huge variation among the world’s languages, and linguists not only describe the diverse characteristics of individual languages but also explore properties which all languages share and which offer insight into the human mind. The study of linguistics draws on methods and knowledge from a wide range of disciplines. For instance, the study of meaning draws on philosophy, the analysis of the speech signal uses methods from physics and engineering, and the study of language acquisition draws on psychology. This variety is one of the things that makes linguistics fascinating: one day you might be poring over a medieval text for evidence of how the grammar of a language has changed, and the next, learning about how the larynx creates sound energy for speech, or how we can record brain responses in a categorisation task.

At Cambridge you will study the core components of linguistic theory, such as phonetics and phonology, syntax and semantics, and you will also make use of knowledge and expertise drawn from disciplines as diverse as computer sciences, philosophy, physics, biology, sociology, psychology and neuroscience. We encourage a balanced approach to developing skills in the discipline, and we have state-of-the-art facilities to enrich your studies by enabling you to put what you have learnt into practice and to conduct your own theoretical or experimental project.

For details on the Linguistics course, please see the Linguistics Tripos pages.

See the course entry in the prospectus









For more information about Linguistics at individual Cambridge Colleges, follow the links below:

Christs Hughes Hall Robinson
Churchill Jesus Selwyn
Clare King's Sidney Sussex
Corpus Christi Lucy Cavendish St Edmund's
Downing Magdalene St John's
Emmanuel Murray Edwards Trinity
Fitzwilliam Newnham Trinity Hall
Girton Pembroke Wolfson
Gonville and Caius Peterhouse  
Homerton Queens'  


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