The M.A. with thesis option is a two-year program intended for those who have completed an undergraduate major in Linguistics with satisfactory standing (a minimum B+ average in the Linguistics courses), and who have a thesis research area in mind. It consists of at least 15 credit hours of graduate courses, i.e., at least five one-semester courses (including the graduate seminars, Linguistics 7000 (Analytical Issues in Linguistics) and Linguistics 7001 (Seminar in Research Methods), plus a thesis. Students interested in the thesis option who have an excellent undergraduate record and a well-defined research plan, yet who do not possess the equivalent of a Linguistics undergraduate major, will be required to take additional undergraduate and/or graduate courses in Linguistics, as will all students who have gaps in the core areas of phonology and (morpho)syntax.
Courses will be selected so as to ensure that students will have completed at least one graduate course in each of syntax and phonology (i.e., at least one of 6001/6110, plus one of 6200/6201). The program may also include Linguistics 6500 (Field Methods), which is offered every 2nd year.
The M.A. in Linguistics also requires proficiency in a language other than the candidate’s first language. This requirement may be satisfied by a minimum B grade in a second-year university language course, or performance satisfactory to the department in an arranged reading proficiency test. A working or structural knowledge of other languages may also be required for particular programs (e.g., courses in the series Linguistics 6050–6054 for those working on aboriginal languages). Masters’ students are encouraged to obtain a structural knowledge of at least one non-Indo-European language.
Recommended Schedule: Students who select the M.A. with thesis option normally complete their graduate coursework in the first year of the program: ideally, 2 (or 3) courses in the Fall and 3 (or 2) in the Winter (insofar as departmental course offerings permit this). By the end of the first full year, students will also have selected a supervisor and thesis topic, and will have obtained formal approval for this topic (Topic Approval). For full-time students, the second year is normally devoted to thesis research and writing.