Linguistics Career and Grad School Information Session

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1 Linguistics Career and Grad School Information Session for 3 rd and 4 th year students Schedule Postgraduate options for linguistics majors get a job related to linguistics teach English abroad go to graduate school Sept. 30, 2010 SLaLS, Carleton University Postgraduate options for Linguistics i major Find a linguistics job Linguistics majors: skills Comprehensive understanding of language and linguistic theory Analytical skills in all aspects of language (sounds, words, sentences, meanings) Critical/analytical thinkingand problemsolving skills approaching topics and problems from various perspectives analyzing multiple dimensions of a problem identifying problems and developing solutions decision making skills Linguistics majors: skills Capacity to think creatively, logically and quantitatively Project management and research skills: observe; interview; collect data; process, synthesize and interpret vast amounts of data 1

2 Educational institutions linguistics professor, lecturer language instructor project director, coordinator or administrator research assistant Language institutions language instructor language learning and teaching program developer curriculum and materials developer test developer Publishing firms editor or proofreader acquisitions editor Market research institutions analyst: conduct surveys, analyze data advertising product names survey designer Natural language processing companies: computational linguist develop machine translation systems speech recognition ii and speech analysis (PC, Internet) maintain electronic lexicons used for automatic speech recognition and text to speech Software companies Dictionaries and lexicons pronunciation dictionaries; phonetic transcriptions encode foreign language terminology into machine translation software system Electronic system for improving vocabulary 2

3 Healthcare profession Speech language pathologist Speech therapist Audiologist Government foreign language instructor (military, intelligence) translator, interpreter Law and order forensic linguist consultant: composing and interpreting legal documents Language documentation and revitalization projects endangered languages: document, protect, preserve language revitalization: compile grammar, teach language Jobs: where to look Career Centre (Carleton) Linguist List LSA (Linguistic Society of America) Teach English abroad 3

4 Where to teach private companies private language schools colleges and universities community based programs government programs (e.g., JET) Applying to graduate school Graduate school Linguistics Speech Language Pathology Cognitive Science (Carleton) Applied Language Studies (Carleton) Education Grad school: Linguistics Core theoretical courses Phonology, syntax, semantics Subdisciplines Computational ti llinguisticsi Fieldwork, descriptive linguistics Historical/comparative linguistics psycholinguistics, neurolinguistics Grad school: SLP Master s program Locations Canada: BC, Alberta, Western Ontario, Toronto, Ottawa, Montréal, McGill, Laval, Dalhousie United States United Kingdom Australia Requirements vary: plan ahead! Grad school: Cognitive science Carleton: MCogSc (new) & PhD Five disciplines: linguistics, psychology, philosophy, computer science, neuroscience 4

5 Graduate school option Is graduate school for me? Choosing a program: do your research : plan ahead Timeline Is graduate school for me? Undergraduate vs. graduate studies Degree of specialization Importance of research (ideas, initiative) Interaction with faculty M.A. vs. Ph.D. Program length Requirements (coursework, generals papers or comprehensive exams, thesis) Choosing a program Depth vs. breadth Some programs are narrower, more focused, and more coherent than others Many programs focus on particular theories or frameworks Structured sequence of courses vs. independent program Choosing a program Questions to ask Who teaches there? What are their areas of specialization? Is the faculty committed to student education (or only interested t din their own research?) Does the program have a good reputation? What are the requirements besides coursework? What are the requirements for admission? Is financial aid available? Choosing a program Information sources Internet Directory of linguistics programs in Canada & US dirs programs.cfm Ranking of linguistics programs in the US graduate school.phds.org/rankings/linguistics Linguistics programs worldwide Your professors Former students Applying to a program Plan ahead Inform your professors Build a CV (Curriculum Vitae) 5

6 Building a CV Your CV is a record of all your accomplishments and should include: titles of term papers, independent study research papers, theses topics of Special Topic courses scholarships and awards TA and RAships volunteer work 1. Application form 2. Statement of interest/research 3. Writing sample 4. Reference letters 5. Transcripts 6. GRE 2. Statement of interest a.k.a. statement of purpose/research, letter of intent Include concrete professional and research goals Can expand on previous work Match with university is important One page 3. Writing sample Demonstrates ability to do research Can be work in progress (e.g. honours thesis)or a paper from a previous course (but it may need revision!!) Ask your professors for advice 3. Writing sample (cont d) Not necessarily ground breaking But should be your own independent work Not necessarily extremelytechnical technical But should show your ability to make a theoretical argument Not necessarily long But should be well written and packed with good ideas 4. Reference letters 2 3 letters: ask early! Academic performance, future potential Ask professors who know you, whose courses you did well in Provide them with all required information: what, when, where, and dossier FIPPA (release of information) 6

7 5. Transcripts Strive for excellent grades! 6. GRE Graduate Record Examinations (General) Standardized test Verbal reasoning, quantitative i reasoning, critical thinking, analytical writing skills Offered year round at computer based test centres Not usually required in Canadian univ. Scholarships internal teaching assistantships research assistantships merit scholarships tuition scholarships Scholarships external provincial Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) Fonds québécois de recherche sur la société et la culture (FQRSC) national (can be used outside of Canada) Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) National Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships Scholarships internal part of program application external apply in your fourth year deadlines vary from August to December more information: carleton.ca/fgpa Timeline Deadlines: Nov Feb Apply early: competitive, funding limited 7

8 Timeline 3 rd year (incl. summer) Take courses that could result in a writing sample Inform professors about your intent to pursue graduate studies Research graduate programs Work on writing sample Take GREs (if required) Timeline Fall of 4 th year Complete the application package (form, statement, writing sample, transcripts) Request reference letters Request reference letters (Re)take GREs Apply for scholarships Winter of 4 th year Wait for responses! 8

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