Program

Application deadline is January 15 for a September 1 start.

ProgramExpected LengthProject and/or thesisCourse based
M.A.2 years

The M.A. in Linguistics is a two-year research-based Master of Arts program. Two concentrations in the M.A. Linguistics are available:

  • Applied Linguistics
  • General Linguistics

Applied Linguistics handles the practical applications of linguistic research and has a more interdisciplinary orientation, while General Linguistics focuses on the functions, structures, or historical changes of language. The two concentrations differ in their core requirements.

When applying for admission to the Linguistics – Master of Arts – Thesis program, you will be prompted to choose your preferred concentration: Applied Linguistics or General Linguistics. Please choose only one. Applicants will not be considered for both concentrations. Changes of research concentrations may be requested and approved after admission.

Concentrations

Applied Linguistics

The M.A. in Linguistics - Applied Linguistics involves coursework (five three-credit-units courses) in the areas of linguistics and applied linguistics, plus writing and defending an M.A. thesis based on individual research.

Graduate students in this concentration can pursue original research related to anthropological linguistics, sociolinguistics, language maintenance in Canada and abroad, heritage languages of Canada, computational linguistics, TESOL, second/ foreign/ native language acquisition, and other areas listed below. Students can also make inquiries about other possible areas of language-related studies.

Example areas of applied linguistics research include:

  • Bilingualism/multilingualism
  • Computational linguistics and corpus linguistics
  • Pragmatics, discourse analysis, sociolinguistics, language and culture interactions
  • Empirical and experimental linguistics
  • Immigrant, heritage and minority language maintenance in Canada and abroad
  • Second/additional/foreign/child language acquisition, language teaching, and language assessment

Examples of recent topics chosen by students include: Canadian bilingualism and family language policy among African Immigrants in Saskatchewan, COVID vocabulary in Russian and Canadian English, sexist discourse in presidential speeches, extracurricular activities in university language classes, language attitudes of Ukrainian speakers in Saskatchewan, maintenance of Mandarin Chinese and Russian in the families of immigrants in Saskatchewan, Doukhobor language and culture, language attitudes and ethnic identity of Iranian immigrants in Saskatchewan, discourse analysis of texts describing depression, language requirements of international students in Saskatchewan, euphemisms in medical communication, and non-verbal communication tools in ESL classrooms.

General Linguistics

The M.A. in Linguistics - General Linguistics involves coursework (five three-credit-units courses) in the areas of linguistics and applied linguistics plus writing and defending an M.A. thesis based on individual research.

Graduate students in this concentration can pursue original research related to anthropological linguistics, sociolinguistics, language contact, heritage languages of Canada, Indigenous languages of the Americas, computational linguistics, morphology, syntax, phonetics, and other areas listed below. Students can also make inquiries about other possible areas of language-related studies.

Example areas of general linguistics research include:

  • Core fields in linguistics: phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax (including tense and aspect), semantics
  • Language contact
  • Language documentation and description
  • Computational linguistics, experimental linguistics
  • Typological/areal linguistics
  • Studies on specific languages: Doukhobor Russian, English, French, German, Inuktitut, Media Lengua, Michif, Russian, Shiwiar, Spanish, Swabian, Upper Tanana
  • Studies on language families: Algonquian, Chicham, Dene, Inuit, Quechuan Romance

Examples of recent topics chosen by students include: the stop system in Achí, voice onset time in L2 Spanish (L1 Nahuatl), comparative analyses of 'unified' vs. 'community' language in Ecuadorian Quichua, historical research on gender neutral pronouns in English, computational parsers and online verb conjugators for underdocumented languages, discourse markers in Portuguese, corpora analyses of Korean technical terms, intonation in Cuenca Spanish, and non-verbal communication in aquatic environments.

Research supervisors

It is not necessary to find a potential supervisor before you begin an application. However, the list below may be helpful to learn about the research interests of our faculty.

Name Research areas
Chantale CeneriniLanguages of the Michif, Algonquian languages, French (MB, SK); Language description and documentation; Narrative structure; Language revitalization and maintenance; Morphology, morphosyntax; Co-construction, discourse; Indigenous research methodologies
Martin KohlbergerLanguage documentation and description, languages of the Americas, Chicham languages, language contact, areal typology, variation and language change
Zhi LiApplied linguistics; computational linguistics; language assessment; second language acquisition; technologies for language teaching and learning; text mining
Olga Charlotte LovickDene languages,Language documentation & description, Anthropological linguistics, Language maintenance, Indigenous languages, requests & politeness
Veronika MakarovaDiscourse Analysis; Doukhobor; Doukhobor Russian language; Doukhobor culture; English as a Foreign Language; English as a Second Language; English as an additional language; Linguistics; Russian language and culture; Speech Corpora; applied linguistics; bilingualism; cross-cultural studies; emotive speech; foreign language teaching; language and culture; languages; multilingualism; phonetics; second language teaching; sociolinguistics; whispered speech
Braj SinhaBuddhism, India, culture, religion (Dr. Sinha supervises graduate students in Religious Studies, not in Linguistics)
Bettina SprengIndigenous; Inuit; ergativity; first language acquisition; language documentation; language revitalisation; object case alternations; understudied languages; voice alternations
Jesse StewartAcoustic Phonetics, Auditory (Perceptual) Phonetics, Computational linguistics, statistical modeling, parsers, web-based language revitalization tools

Tuition and funding

Funding

Upon admission each student is automatically considered for all forms of available funding, which may include scholarships, teaching fellowships, and various bursaries. There are also special programs for international students from China, Mexico, and Ecuador. However, we do not guarantee funding for graduate students as the Department funding is limited.

Tuition

Thesis or project-based program

Graduate students in a thesis or project-based program pay tuition three times a year for as long as they are enrolled in their program. (Tuition assessment and payment for Spring/Summer terms is split; however, students are required to pay for the full term.)

Term Canadian International
September 1 - December 31, 2022 $1,566.00 CAD $3,132.00 CAD
January 1 - April 30, 2023 $1,566.00 CAD $3,132.00 CAD
May 1 - August 31, 2023 $1,566.00 CAD $3,132.00 CAD
Total per academic year $4,698.00 CAD $9,396.00 CAD

Student fees

In addition to tuition above, students also pay fees for programs like health and dental insurance, a bus pass, and other campus services. The amount you need to pay depends on if you are taking classes full time or part time, and if you are on campus or not. The table below assumes you are on campus full-time.

Fall 2022 Winter 2023 Spring 2023 Summer 2023
Student fees $782.50 CAD $323.47 CAD $35.00 CAD $35.00 CAD

Tuition information is accurate for the current academic year and does not include student fees. For detailed tuition and fees information, visit the official tuition website.

Admission requirements

Master of Arts (M.A.)

  • Language Proficiency Requirements: Proof of English proficiency may be required for international applicants and for applicants whose first language is not English
  • A cumulative weighted average of at least a 70% (USask grade system equivalent) in the last two years of study (i.e. 60 credit units)
  • A four-year honours degree, or equivalent, from a recognized college or university in an academic discipline relevant to the proposed field of study
  • A minimum of nine credit units of Linguistics or Applied Linguistics courses at the undergraduate level

Students with non-Linguistics B.A. degrees must have a strong background in Linguistics demonstrated in their transcripts (at least five general Linguistics courses). Contact the Graduate Chair, if you have questions about admissions requirements.

Application process

Submit an online application

Before beginning your online application, be sure that you have carefully reviewed all program information and admission requirements on this page.

During the application, you'll be asked for:

  • Personal information such as your name, address, etc.
  • Contact information of your three referees
    • For your letters of recommendation, two of your referees must be academic contacts, and the third may be academic or professional
  • Your complete academic history from all previous post-secondary institutions

The application takes about 30 minutes to complete. You may save your application and return to it later.

At the end of the application, you will need to pay a non-refundable $120 application fee. Your application will not be processed until payment is received.

When applying for admission to the Linguistics – Master of Arts – Thesis program, you will be prompted to choose your preferred concentration: Applied Linguistics or General Linguistics. Please choose only one. Applicants will not be considered for both concentrations. Changes of research concentrations may be requested and approved after admission.

Submit required documents

Once you've submitted your online application, you will have access to upload your required documents, and provide the contact information for your references. To do this, go to the "Supplemental Items & Documents" tab in your application, and upload the documents outlined below.

Preliminary Statement of Marks

  • Once you have submitted your application for admission and paid the application fee, you will be required to upload unofficial PDF copies of your academic transcript(s) from each post-secondary institution attended. This requirement will appear as Preliminary Statement of Marks or Additional Prelim. Statement under admission requirements on your Application Summary when you check your application status.
  • The uploaded transcript can be an unofficial copy of the transcript issued by the university or college, and must include a grading key/legend.
  • All pages of a transcript must be uploaded as a single PDF document.
  • Uploaded transcripts will be considered unofficial or preliminary. Official copies of your transcripts will be required only for applicants offered admission. This requirement will appear as Post-secondary Transcript under admission requirements on your Application Summary when you check your application status.

Uploading documents

Post-secondary Transcripts

If you receive an offer of admission, you will then be required to have your official post-secondary transcripts sent (by mail in a sealed envelope directly from the institution) to the address below. Please do not send official documents until we request them.

College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
Room 116 Thorvaldson Building, 110 Science Place 
Saskatoon, SK CANADA S7N 5C9

  • Transcripts usually indicate the institution’s name, grading scheme (typically on back of transcript), your name, course names, numbers, credits, and the grades you have received. Depending on the country or institution, some features may not be available.
  • Transcripts in languages other than English must be accompanied by a certified translation.
  • If you are a current University of Saskatchewan student completing your undergraduate program then a letter of completion of degree requirements will be required from your college.

Proof of English language proficiency may be required for international applicants and for applicants whose first language is not English.

For students who are required to provide proof of English proficiency:

  • It is your responsibility to have completed an official and approved test with the appropriate score before the application deadline.
  • Tests are valid for 24 months after the testing date and must be valid at the beginning of the student's first term of registration in the graduate program.
  • Applicants will be required to upload a PDF copy of any required language test score. Uploaded test scores will be considered unofficial or preliminary.

Uploading documents

If you receive an Offer of Admission you may be required to have your official language test scores sent to the address below. Please do not send official documents until we request them.

College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
Room 116 Thorvaldson Building - 110 Science Place
Saskatoon, SK CANADA S7N 5C9

In addition to the above official documents, please upload the following documents:

  • A curriculum vitae or resume with a brief written description of previous relevant course work, grades, employment, and relevant training and research experience.
  • A research statement: Your research statement should be three to five pages in length and outline what research project you intend to do as a part of your degree. The research statement should clearly state your research plans, research question, hypotheses, or research goals, and methodology. Also, include why you have chosen the University of Saskatchewan and your expectations of the program. If you believe that one of the Linguistics faculty would be particularly suited as your supervisor, please indicate this in your statement.

Note: Students who pass the initial screening process will be invited for a remote interview with representatives of the Department of Linguistics.

Contact

Graduate Admissions
Linguistics
9 Campus Drive - Room 518 Arts
University of Saskatchewan
Saskatoon, SK S7N 5A5

Graduate Chair
Dr. Zhi Li
Email: z.li@usask.ca

Application Admin Support
Danielle Guillou-Tollin
Email: asg.gradapplications@usask.ca

Program Admin Support
Nadine Penner
Email: asg.graduateprograms@usask.ca