Department of Languages and Literature

The Master of Arts Program in Linguistics

Linguistics, the scientific study of language, is a highly diverse field with many specializations of relevance to today's increasingly globalized educational and business environments. Benedictine's Master of Arts (M.A.) program in Linguistics enables students to develop an in-depth understanding of the nature of human language and how it is used to communicate for different purposes in a variety of social cultural and professional contexts.

About the program

The M.A. program in Linguistics provides a thorough grounding in the basics of linguistics as a discipline as well as a choice of two concentrations that provide students with skills in the application of linguistic theory:

   QuillLiterary Studies concentration
   QuillTESOL (Teaching English as a Second or Other Language) concentration

M.A. students may also pursue part of their studies in languages such as Mandarin, Arabic, or Spanish. The program requires 32 credit hours based on traditional 15 week semesters and may be completed in one year full-time or two years part-time.


Admission to the program

Benedictine University welcomes diversity, and international students are strongly encouraged to apply. We offer specialized preparatory or concurrent English for Academic Purposes courses for students whose first language is not English and who require additional English language support.

Requirements for admission to the program include a one-page essay discussing your education and career goals, followed by a personal or phone interview with departmental representatives. Two letters of recommendation are also required: one that addresses your academic potential and one that addresses your interpersonal skills and work ethic. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is not required for admission. For a full list of application requirements, please visit the University's Graduate Admissions website.


Apply Now

For Admissions inquiries, contact
Alyssa Szynal


Program faculty

Our teaching faculty have doctoral degrees in Linguistics, Literature, or TESOL. They are internationally experienced and highly attuned to the needs of a diverse student population.

The job of the linguist, like that of the biologist or the botanist, is not to tell us how nature should behave, or what its creations should look like, but to describe those creations in all their messy glory and try to figure out what they can teach us about life, the world, and, especially in the case of linguistics, the workings of the human mind.

– Arika Okrent