Linguistics is the systematic study of human language and its use. Linguists approach the study of language from a variety of perspectives. Descriptive linguists aim to define the basic "nuts and bolts" of what makes a given language work. Cognitive linguistics and psycholinguists focus on the intersection between language and more general human thought processes. Sociolinguists study the use of language in human society, while Applied linguists draw on interdisciplinary perspectives to study and understand language issues in the world. Historical linguists study the ways in which particular languages are related to one another, and how all human languages have changed and evolved over time. All of these types of linguists also work together in a broader sense to define and refine the theoretical models that will help us characterize the human language faculty as a whole.
Why study Linguistics at UNE?
Students studying linguistics learn about the languages, cultures and peoples of the world. Linguistics also involves training in data analysis, problem solving and applications of logic, which are all broadly applicable to many kinds of career paths. Graduates in linguistics are sought after in such diverse fields as: education, speech pathology, computer science, intelligence, journalism, foreign affairs, and business, to name but a few.
Linguistics is particularly useful if you are learning a language, since it will give you a deeper understanding of its structure and use, and thus give you an edge in learning further languages.
Lastly, the field of Aboriginal languages is expanding rapidly with the implementation of school curricula in traditional Indigenous languages. This means there is a huge requirement for linguistics graduates in this field, particularly those with some education training.