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Peter doing field research

Welcome to the Department of Linguistics!

Close to one-half of the world’s six thousand languages are spoken in the Pacific and Asia — the particular geographic focus of our department. A large portion of these languages are either underdocumented or entirely undocumented, and many have small speaker populations. Several of our faculty enjoy international renown for their research on the languages of the Pacific and Asia, and we are currently the only institution in the United States that offers a graduate program in language documentation and conservation. One of our M.A. programs is specifically designed to prepare students for leadership roles in conservation and documentation efforts, and our Ph.D. program offers similar opportunities at a more advanced level. We also offer an Interdisciplinary BA in Linguistics, as well as a minor in Linguistics. American Sign Language classes, which fulfill the Hawaiian or Second Language general education requirement, are also delivered in the Department of Linguistics.

Our department contributes to the interdisciplinary effort to understand the workings of the human mind through its experimental work on the language faculty, centered around the College’s Language Analysis and Experimentation Laboratories. We have well known and established specialists in the areas of language acquisition and psycholinguistics, and we have been heavily involved in the university’s Cognitive Science Research Group from its inception.

Two special strengths of the department include its focus on the issue of language sustainability and diversity in the Pacific and Asia, and its commitment to the study of language through the tools of contemporary cognitive science in addition to more traditional analytic techniques.

The UHM Department of Linguistics is ranked 10th in the nation & 19th worldwide

Read the article in UH Press about our recent rankings in the 2023 QS World University Rankings by Subject.

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University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Department of Linguistics
1890 East West Road, Moore Hall 569  [map]
Honolulu, Hawaiʻi 96822 USA
Office Hours M-F  8 AM – 4:30 PM
+1(808) 956-8602 / linguist@hawaii.edu

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