UHM Department of Linguistics


The Department of Linguistics offers degree programs leading to the M.A. and Ph.D. in linguistics.

The M.A. program provides broad training in all major areas of the discipline, with three separate streams to suit a variety of interests: language analysis, experimental linguistics, and language documentation and conservation.

The Ph.D. program offers advanced graduate training for those interested in pursuing a professional career in linguistics, with opportunities to work with leading experts in several subfields of linguistics.

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.

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.

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, we have been heavily involved in the university's Cognitive Science Research Group from its inception, and we are strongly committed to the Medical School's initiative to establish a joint degree program in neuroscience.

Thanks to its location, its mission, its faculty, and its students, the Department of Linguistics at the University of Hawai'i is able to offered unparalleled opportunities for research into the workings of language.

Department Updates

NEW The Graduate Chair holds office hours on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. To sign up for appointment times, log in to either a gmail account or your UH email account and then click here.

The Bilinski Educational Foundation board of members recently visited the campus to meet the fellows who have been supported by their generous gifts. Here is a video of some of the students talking about the impact of the Bilinski Fellowships.

Roshan Institute Fellowship is now available. Click for more information.

Professors Andrea Berez and Victoria Anderson receive NSF grant for the 4th International Conference on Language Documentation and Conservation.

Amy Schafer awarded large NSF grant

Research team discovers existence of Hawai'i Sign Language, the last of America's undiscovered languages

Click here to view University of Hawaii at Manoa press release about Hawai'i sign language discovery.

Click here to view Hawai'i sign language demonstration.

Google Partners with UH Mānoa Linguistics on Endangered Languages Project

Bilinski Fellowships in Linguistics - Pre-dissertation fellowship added to the dissertation fellowships. Click here for information. Click here to view the 2011 Bilinski Dissertation Fellowship video.

Financial Aid for Graduate Students

Wait List for Ling 102 Unit Mastery. Write to linguist@hawaii.edu

General Ed in Linguistics -
  • Click here for a list of linguistics courses that fulfill General Education requirements.

Unit Mastery LING 150B and LING 102 as well as classroom formats.
Want to know more?
Check out this short video.

Spring 2015 course schedule.

List of potential committee members


Language Documentation Training Center

Language Documentation & Conservation