Pasadena City College, Home of the PCC Lancers


What Is Linguistics?

Linguistics is a science that intersects social sciences, humanities, and natural sciences. It is the study of human language from many different aspects:

  • the structure of language
  • the sound system
  • words and their meanings
  • the history of language
  • language and the mind
  • language and culture

What Do You Learn When You Study Linguistics?

There are many interesting questions to explore in the field of Linguistics:

  • How is language related to the mind?
  • What does language usage indicate about speakers?
  • How did language originate?
  • Why and how does language change?
  • How do speakers use language to advance their position in society?
  • What influence does language have on political conflicts and peace negotiations?

Why Study Linguistics?

The study of Linguistics helps you to better understand the world around you. Why? Because as human beings, we perceive, organize, and understand our world through language. We express ourselves and connect to others through language. When we see something interesting or shocking, when we try to remember a fact or event, express anger or love, we do this through language. When we read, sing write, converse, or daydream, language is at the heart of our experience. When you study Linguistics, you not only investigate sounds, words, and structures, but you gain entry into the heart of humanities.

There are many practical benefits when you study Linguistics:

  • Deepen awareness of your own language and other languages
  • Improve your ability to decode and understand written and spoken communication
  • Increase cultural awareness and sensitivity
  • Develop logical thinking and problem solving skills
  • Learn foreign languages faster
  • Get practice in data analysis
  • Build background for studies in communication, foreign languages, translating, psychology, and philosophy

Finally, not only is Linguistics USEFUL, but it’s FUN!


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