Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics

Linguistics is the scientific study of human language. It is concerned with the understanding of language as human knowledge and behaviour and with language use in different social and communicative contexts. It analyses language at different levels which include the study of sounds, the structure of words and sentences, word and sentence meaning, and language use and interaction. It draws information from multiple disciplines including biology, neuroscience, psychology, sociology, anthropology, philosophy, computer science, language pathology.

The mission of the Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics is to provide up-to-date scientific knowledge in the broad field of Linguistics and simultaneously encourage the development of a questioning spirit concerning knowledge in general. Specifically, the Department undergraduate syllabus aims to offer students (a) a solid background on theory and empirical research in Theoretical and Applied Linguistics, (b) knowledge and skills needed to become accomplished language professionals, and (c) pre-service teacher education. Graduate students have the opportunity to further explore linguistic theory and its applications, and acquire advanced research skills, both of which are required for securing professional positions either at different academic levels of linguistics and language education and/or at the services sector.

The Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics is the largest in the School of English. There are currently 16 faculty members with research specializations in phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, cognitive linguistics, psycholinguistics, first and second language acquisition, sociolinguistics, historical linguistics, teaching methodology. The Department offers a variety of courses in all these areas. There are five major strands: (i) courses in English language, (ii) courses in theoretical linguistics, (iii) courses in applied linguistics, (iv) courses in inter-disciplinary linguistics, (v) courses in research paper writing, including BA dissertation.

The Department offers both MA and PhD degrees in Theoretical and Applied Linguistics. There are two two-year MA programs:, an MA in Theoretical and Applied Linguistics and an MA in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL). An MA thesis is compulsory in both programs. Students on the doctoral program pursue empirical research in one of the scientific areas faculty members specialise in. The department teaches and advises approximately 65 graduate students in the MA and PhD programs.

Teaching and research is further supported by two laboratories, the Language Development and the Phonetics Laboratories, as well as the Experimental Primary School associated with the Department.