One of the hardest decisions you have to make is deciding which university to go to. However, another really tough decision is which department and course to choose. There are many things to consider when making such big decisions: your interests, the support within the department and different student offers so your experience will be an amazing one.
Being part of the Department of Language and Linguistic Science will not only allow you to grow academically by learning fascinating facts about different aspects of language but also to grow as a person. You will be able to meet great people and engage in new interesting communities.
Before starting my course, I did not know much about the study of linguistics except that it must have a lot to do with languages. After a few weeks of getting introduced to different aspects of language, I realized that languages are not just words that come out of your mouth and which have certain meanings. I learned how complicated and ambiguous spoken language can be and that even though this is the case, we understand each other.
The choice is yours
During my second year, I really enjoyed that I was able to choose 5 out of 6 modules. I was able to choose the modules that I am most interested in.
Firstly, I chose Pragmatics. This module introduced us to two different theories and how to apply those when analyzing conversations. In Pragmatics, you will learn how spoken words are translated into their actual meaning.
Secondly, I chose Conversation Analysis, where we are transcribing real-life conversations. My third and fourth modules are Intermediate Syntax and Intermediate Semantics, subjects that I really enjoyed in my first year.
And my last module is Arabic. I really enjoy my Arabic seminars because they are not typical seminars where you apply what you have learned in a lecture. Instead, you dive into the Arab world by learning the language and talking about the culture.
The availability of modules allows you to specify or develop your knowledge in those topics you are most interested in.
More than Lectures and Seminars
Studying a language
One of the main reasons why I wanted to study here was the possibility of studying a language as part of your course, even if you’re not studying for a language degree. I’ve always wanted to learn Arabic and now, at York, I am studying Arabic at Level 2 as one of my modules. Whether you are interested in German or Chinese, there are many languages to choose from.
However, learning a language is only the beginning. Another amazing advantage of the department is the opportunity to do a year abroad. This is a great opportunity. Not only do you improve your language skills but also get to know university life in a different country.
Another great plus is the possibility of going to different talks by guest lecturers, some of who are from the University of York but also lecturers from other universities. By listening to people who are professionals in their field, you get the chance to learn more about languages and the different aspects of them.
The department gives students the opportunity to not only focus on studying content but to vary their studies in different ways. This makes your uni experience even more exciting because you can enjoy your course and the content you learn even outside of lecture halls and seminar rooms.
Another great aspect about the department is that lecturers and seminar tutors are from all around the world. By attending lectures you will realize that everyone is taught in a unique way. All lecturers are professionals in their field and everyone is teaching their linguistics content in an interesting and motivating way. And believe it or not, this will actually make you want to do your coursework.
Also, all lecturers and seminar tutors are very supportive if there is something bothering you. Everyone knows about the struggle that might occur when starting university and you will receive help if you need it.
We are a big family-like community
What I enjoy most about the department is the fact that we’re all part of a big family that cares for each other.
You get the chance to meet many people from different parts of the UK but also different countries. You will meet people with similar interests who, during their time at University, might have had the same struggles but also enjoy the same things. And this is how great friendships build up.
After one and a half years of being part of the Department of Language and Linguistic Science, I can assure you that you will learn so much more than just about the study of Linguistics.
You will learn more about your strengths and how and where to apply them. You will discover that uni is not all about studying, lectures and seminars. Plus, you will meet some amazing people, both students and tutors. After experiencing all that and more, I can assure you that you will not regret choosing to study here.