Coursework

Students must complete 12 courses distributed as follows: five content-focused courses, three methods courses, and the four course Language Science technical and professional skills sequence (LSci 202A-D).

Content courses. Content courses are those which focus on a particular domain of inquiry in language science. LSci courses that do not end with an M are content-focused courses (e.g., LSci 250). In addition, the following courses currently are considered content-focused language science courses:

  • CompSci 272: Statistical Natural Language Processing
  • Educ 218, when titled “English Language Variation”
  • Educ 238, when titled “Language and Learning Disabilities”
  • LPS 246, when titled “Logic Seminar”
  • Psych 269, when taught by Greg Hickok

Methods courses. Methods courses are those that focus on particular skills used to accomplish language science research. LSci courses that end with an M are methods-focused courses (e.g., LSci 207M). In addition, the following courses are currently considered methods-focused language science courses:

  • Educ 238, when titled “Measurement and Psychometrics”
  • Educ 280: Research Methods - HLM
  • Educ 288A: Educational, Social, and Behavioral Statistics
  • Psych 214: Bayesian Cognitive Modeling
  • Psych 203A: Discrete Mathematics and Probability
  • Psych 203C: Algorithmic Statistics
  • Psych 205C: Computational Statistics
  • Stats 210 or Stats 210A: Statistical Methods I: Linear Models

Additional courses. Courses not listed above may still be counted as satisfying the coursework for the Language Science Ph.D., at the discretion of the Graduate Director.  Typically, such courses are taught by faculty affiliated with the Language Science department.

Students must also attend Language Science seminars (LSci 201A-B-C), and fulfill the PhD program’s foreign language requirement.

Foreign language requirement. Satisfied by a “B” or better in an undergraduate course in a non-English language equivalent to the 2C level, a “B” or better in a course studying the structure of a non-English language, or demonstrated proficiency as assessed by a faculty member and approved by the Graduate Director.

No grade lower than B is counted toward satisfying any course requirements.

 

Milestones

The program’s graduate training milestones provide practical scaffolding along the way to the dissertation. Students will be asked to complete a short research proposal (equivalent to an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship proposal) in year 2, synthesizing research ideas into a project proposal. Having completed the proposal, students will complete a concentration exam also in year 2, practicing the presentation of scientific ideas. Students will then demonstrate scientific research proficiency and communication ability with a qualifying research talk and paper in year 3. Finally, to demonstrate appropriate breadth and depth of knowledge in their dissertation research area, students will write a conceptual analysis of the dissertation area in year 4, which serves as an advancement to candidacy. Students will then write and publicly defend a dissertation in year 5.

Research proposal. Students are required to complete a research proposal by the fall of their second year (fourth quarter). This proposal should use the formatting and length requirements of a funding agency’s application, such as the NSF GFRP application of the current year.

Concentration examination. Students are required to complete a targeted literature review in the area of their concentration by the spring of their second year (sixth quarter), orally presented to a committee of three faculty members. Format and length of this document will differ from area to area and project to project; the advisor and, where useful, the committee should be consulted in advance to establish a framework and parameters for this document.

Qualifying research talk & paper. Students are required to submit and orally present a research paper of publishable quality by the spring of their third year (ninth quarter). The oral presentation is typically at the departmental colloquium and the length of a standard conference presentation. The research paper should use the formatting and length requirements of a professional publication outlet (e.g., conference proceedings or journal in the relevant content area).

Advancement (CADA). In lieu of a formal admission to candidacy examination, students are required to complete a conceptual analysis of the dissertation area (CADA) by the fall of their fourth year (tenth quarter), defended orally to a committee of five faculty members. The CADA provides the opportunity for the student to develop a perspective on a body of literature relevant to the dissertation research. This perspective may include discussion of research conducted by the student and potential future research, as it relates to the larger body of literature. Format and length of this document will differ from area to area and project to project; the advisor and, where useful, the committee should be consulted in advance to establish a framework and parameters for this document. A written document describing the student’s CADA must be submitted to the committee prior to advancement. Students are required to advance to candidacy by the end of the fall quarter of their fourth year in the program.

Dissertation. Students must submit a dissertation describing original publishable research and present a public defense of the dissertation to a committee of three faculty members as the final requirement of the Ph.D. program. Length of this document will differ from area to area and project to project; the advisor and, where useful, the committee should be consulted in advance to establish a framework and parameters for this document. Prior to the approval of the final version of the dissertation, the student is expected to defend the dissertation in a public colloquium announced with at least one week’s notice.


All requirements for the Ph.D. degree must be fulfilled within three years after advancement to candidacy.

 

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