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Building #2, Room 108 |  Tel. +82-2-880-6163, 6164 |  Fax. +82-2-882-2451 | http://hosting01.snu.ac.kr/~linguist

Whereas the language departments carry out research on individual languages, the Department of Linguistics engages in research on the universal theory of language without setting a limit to the languages studied, in order to delve into the general principles of the workings of human languages. For this purpose the department includes in its teaching curriculum basic theories on phonetics, phonology, semantics, morphology, and syntax. The various Altaic languages are also studied to examine the family ties between Korean and other Altaic languages, and courses are offered on the historical comparative linguistics of the Indo-European languages. Since an observation of the actual language must precede research into the phenomenon of language, a phonetics laboratory with various up-to-date equipment is at the disposal of faculty and students for research and teaching in the spoken language. The study of the essential workings of language necessarily goes hand in hand with the study of individual languages, including foreign languages that are different from one's own. Therefore students who are majoring in linguistics and those who will be going on the job market after graduation are expected to gain competence in linguistic theory and in actual language ability by reading original texts in English, German and French. Such training is no doubt of help to graduates in search of employment in contemporary Korea where there is an increased demand for those with a knowledge of foreign languages. Recently, reflecting world-wide interest in applied linguistics, efforts have been made to computerize languages, and courses on computer language and formal grammar have correspondingly been set up.

The department undertakes a research trip every autumn to a particular region of Korea to conduct fieldwork on the state of the local dialect. Such fieldwork enables students to come into contact with a living language outside of the classroom, to heighten their feel for the nuances of language, and to foster their ability to analyze language. Fieldwork also contributes to the recording of precious dialects that are in danger of disappearing altogether.

Graduates are active in the fields of writing and literary criticism, journalism, politics, government service, business and finance. In particular, many graduates work in the media (radio and TV broadcasting stations and newspapers).

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