We offer MA and PhD degree programs in Linguistics. These programs provide students with a solid foundational knowledge of the traditional core areas of linguistic analysis, as well as a deeper specialization in a chosen subfield or interface area. Our program has particular strength in the areas of theoretical morphology, syntax, and semantics; experimental phonetics and phonology; and language acquisition. Additional areas of focus include language documentation and field linguistics, language change and variation, pragmatics and information status, prosody, Romance linguistics, and sign language linguistics.

Our core Linguistics faculty members have significant research commitments and experience in a broad range of empirically based domains, including: documentation of under-described languages, dialectological and sociolinguistic field research, compilation of audio and video corpora, development of technologies for maintenance and analysis of corpora, and laboratory/computational approaches to linguistic analysis. We also have affiliated faculty members from the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences (Departments of Anthropology, Philosophy, and Psychology), the Wheelock College of Education & Human Development (including the Deaf Studies Program), and the College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences: Sargent College (Department of Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences).

The Linguistics Department sponsors the annual Boston University Conference on Language Development, organized by linguistics students, which is a major international forum for discussion of language acquisition research.