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Overview

Use language to drive your career

Equip yourself with the knowledge and empathy to lead cross-cultural interactions. Through the study of linguistics you’ll grow your ability to drive social change and shape the future of our nation.

  • Level

  • Undergraduate, NZQF Level 7
  • Campus

  • Auckland, Manawatū
  • Distance learning

  • Available
  • Duration

  • 3 year(s) full-time. Available part-time.
  • International

  • Available for international students studying in NZ or via distance learning

Cultivate your personal and professional development

Linguistics is the study of language, including:

  • its structure and meaning
  • how it is learnt and used
  • what our language says about who we are and where we come from.

From interacting with friends to communicating with colleagues, language plays a fundamental role in both our public and private lives. This includes written and spoken communication, problem-solving, and social and cultural awareness. Our lecturers will encourage you to develop a deeper understanding of your own self-identity and social interactions.

A powerful communications tool

Language is the most powerful tool for connecting with and understanding our evolving diversity of people and cultures.

Massey’s BA (Linguistics) puts a strong focus on personal and applied language use, ethnographic analysis, and language forms and structure. This major will help you develop vital career skills.

Specialist language studies and options available

We have a variety of courses on offer. You could find out more about the role of language in:

  • forensic situations
  • digital communities
  • social media
  • mother-tongue maintenance
  • second-language learning.

Our courses are taught by lecturers who are actively researching.

Careers and further study

Careers

Language is vital to human communication. The study of linguistics helps you understand the development of language and can lead to an array of careers. We have graduates working in a range of diverse sectors in many varied roles including:

  • education: ESOL teacher, language teacher, literacy adviser, university lecturer
  • business, administration and law: communications adviser, interpreter/translator, forensic document analyst
  • government departments: policy analyst, researcher, cultural adviser, immigrations officer
  • publishing, journalism, media and advertising: writer/editor, advertising consultant
  • IT: computer analyst/programmer.

International students

New Zealand is a great place to study. Massey University’s reputation is supported by our international rankings, accreditations and associations. We are rated five star plus by the QS World University Rankings.

Massey University has small class sizes, and our lecturers and staff are friendly and approachable.

As an international student, there are entry requirements that will apply to you. We recommend that you apply at least three months before your anticipated start date so your application can be processed in time. There are additional steps you will need to take. These include obtaining a visa and travel bookings if your study is to be in New Zealand.

Entry requirements

University admission

All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.

Programme admission

Required

There are no specific entry requirements for the Bachelor of Arts (Linguistics), outside of university admission regulations.

English language requirements

To study this programme you must meet Massey University's English language standards.

Prior learning, credit and exemptions

For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:

If you do not have the entry requirements

English language and foundation courses

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, we have courses and programmes that may help.

Summer School

If you need to do a course before you start your programme, there may be options for you in Summer School.

Courses and planning

Credit summary

360 credits

240 credits (at least)

From the Schedule to the Degree including:

Core courses

Major courses

Elective courses

 

120 credits

 

Ensure across all your courses you also have:

  • Not more than 165 credits at 100 level
  • At least 75 credits at 300 level

Attend field trips, studios, workshops, tutorials and laboratories as required.

See ‘Courses for this programme’ below for schedules of courses.

Courses for this specialisation

Compulsory courses

30 credits
172133 Introduction to Language Studies 15
172234 Phonetics 15

Compulsory course selections

At least 30 credits from
172232 Language and Society in New Zealand 15
172233 Language Learning Processes 15
172239 Language and Culture 15
At least 15 credits from
172330 Sounds and Structures 15
172337 Historical and Comparative Linguistics 15

Subject courses

172131 Language and Communication 15
172231 Linguistics for Speech Therapists 15
172235 Linguistic Analysis of the English Language 15
172236 Forensic Linguistics 15
172237 Language, Discourse and Power 15
172333 Discourse and Institutions 15
172335 Language and Identity 15
172336 Languages of the Pacific 15
172338 Language, Diversity and Mediated Communication 15

Planning your programme

Planning overview

If you study full time, in the first year you’ll take eight 15-credit courses, making a total of 120 credits.

If you wish to study over two semesters, you should aim for 60 credits per semester. You may be able to take some courses at summer school if you wish. Make sure you include courses that are prerequisites for the next level of courses you wish to study.

Some courses offered in alternate years

The following courses are offered every second year:

  • 172.232 Language and Society in New Zealand
  • 172.236 Forensic Linguistics
  • 172.237 Language Discourse and Power
  • 172.239 Language and Culture
  • 172.330 Sounds and Structure
  • 172.337 Historical and Comparative Linguistics

About this major

You will start your studies with one or more of the 100-level linguistic courses which provide a general background to language study and a base for more advanced courses to build on. At the advanced level you study specific themes and concentrate on specialised areas of linguistics.

Staff in linguistics are experts at using technology for designing and delivering distance courses that are just as engaging, effective and rewarding as face-to-face offerings.

Minors

Completing a minor is optional. Minors increase the breadth of your degree. They give you extra knowledge, attributes and capabilities.

A minor must be in a different subject from your major.

A Bachelor of Arts (Linguistics) with a minor

You may choose a minor from any University undergraduate degree that has recognised minors. If the minor is from another undergraduate degree, the regulations of that programme will apply.

All BA majors can be taken as minors and there are also some additional minor-only subjects.

A linguistics minor (for students who are studying a different degree) 

If you are not studying towards a BA (Linguistics) and wish to complete a minor in linguistics see the BA regulations for requirements.  

Fees and scholarships

Fees and finance

Fees, student loans and free fees scheme

Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.

There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.

Already know which courses you're going to choose?

If you already know which courses you are going to take, you can use our fees calculator to get an estimate of your fees.

Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme

You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.

The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.

Current and returning Massey students will find their National Student Number on their student homepage.


A good fit if you:

  • enjoy learning languages or have a curiosity about language
  • enjoy subjects such as English and drama.

Key information for students

Compare qualifications and academic information across different New Zealand institutions.

Regulations

Review this important information before you apply for this programme. This gives you full details of the rules and regulations about what you need to study and what you must achieve in order to graduate with this qualification. That includes structure, courses and requirements. These regulations should be read in conjunction with all other Statutes and Regulations of the University including the below.

Undergraduate programmes

General Regulations for Undergraduate Degrees, Undergraduate Diplomas, Undergraduate Certificates, Graduate Diplomas and Graduate Certificates.

 

Regulations for this programme

Applying and enrolling

Applying for the programme

Check you are ready

If you are ready to apply, have a look at our application checklist. It will help you get prepared with what you need. Please also check the entry requirements carefully before you apply.

Choose your programme and click on Apply now

You will apply for the programme using the Apply now button on this page. You’ll also choose your specialisation (major, subject or endorsement) if applicable.

Some programmes have additional requirements such as the submission of a portfolio or CV. Click on Apply now and you will be able to submit those documents as part of the application process.

Receive and accept an Admission Offer of Place

You will receive an Admission Offer of Place when you have been accepted into the programme. You need to accept this before you can enrol in your courses. International students also need to pay their fees at this point.

Enrolling in courses

You’ll then get access to your own student homepage (also known as the student portal). This is where you can enrol in courses. Any updates on your application or enrolments will also be on your student homepage. Make sure you check this regularly.

When you choose courses, ensure you check for any requirements that apply including:

  • prerequisites (courses you have to do before the one you are enrolling in)
  • corequisites (courses you have to do at the same time as the one you are enrolling in)
  • restrictions (courses that you cannot enrol in if you are completing or have completed another identified similar course)
  • location – for instance some distance-based courses still have an on-campus element, so double check that the way the course is taught is suitable for your situation.

Each of our courses has its own webpage where you can find this information. You can use our course search to find course pages.

More information on courses is in the ‘Courses for this programme’ section on this page.

You can find information on application due dates and semester dates on the key dates page.

We look forward to welcoming you to Massey!

If you have any questions, contact us through the Enquire button on this page.

What are courses and credits?

What are courses and credits?

Each Massey programme is made up of courses (in some tertiary institutions they are called ‘papers’).

You will have some compulsory courses and some you can choose from.

Each course is worth a certain amount of credits (often 15 credits, but this does vary). You must gain a set number of credits to be able to graduate from this programme.

There may also be some rules about which courses you need to pass to progress to the next year, or stage, of your study (known as progression). There are also courses you must pass to graduate with a specialisation.

  • See the ‘Courses for this programme’ section for the list of courses.
  • Courses search

Understanding course numbers

The first three digits of our course numbers show you which subject the course is about.

The second three digits show you the level and course ID number. For instance:

  • sub-degree courses are '0' (i.e. xxx.0xx)
  • undergraduate study begins at 100-level, (i.e. xxx.1xx)
  • as you progress through 200- and 300-level courses this number changes to 2 and 3 respectively. The higher the number that starts the second three digits, the higher the level of study
1 6 2 . 3   0 1
Subject area   Level   Course ID number

About electives

Electives are courses that are not compulsory. Certain guidelines are usually provided on courses you may take. Elective courses contribute to the programme, but not to your major or specialisation.

Workload and time management

Use this tool to help determine how much time you will need each week to complete your studies.

Estimate workload

Returning students

For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.

In some cases the programme or specialisation you enrolled in may be no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these programmes go to the Massey University Calendar.

Please contact us through the Enquire button on this page if you have any questions.

Scholarships and awards

Scholarships related to this programme

There are a number of scholarships available for new and current students. They could relate to your situation, achievement or interest.

Find and apply for scholarships

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