Language Studies


Language Studies is an interdisciplinary major offered by the Linguistics Department. It is designed to equip students with competence in one foreign language and, at the same time, provide an understanding of the general nature of human language, its structure and use in particular.

Degrees Offered

  • B.A.
  • Minor

Study and Research Opportunities

  • B.A. and minor with concentrations in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish
  • Opportunities to study abroad through Programs Abroad

Information for First-Year Students (Freshmen)

High school students planning to major in Language Studies at UC Santa Cruz need no additional background other than the courses necessary for UC admission; however, it may be useful to complete more than the minimum requirement in foreign language.

Information for Transfers

Transfer students planning to major in Language Studies should complete two years of intensive language study in their language of concentration before coming to UC Santa Cruz. Those who have not fulfilled these requirements will find it difficult to include study abroad in their schedule, as well as graduate in two years. In addition, they will find it helpful to have completed courses that satisfy campus general education requirements.

While it is not a condition of admission, students from California community colleges may complete the Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) in preparation for transfer to UC Santa Cruz.


  • Advertising
  • Bilingual education
  • Communications
  • Editing and publishing
  • Government service
  • International relations
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Speech pathology
  • Teaching

These are only samples of the field’s many possibilities.


Programs Abroad offers undergraduate students the opportunity to study at more than 100 host universities and colleges in over 43 countries as part of their regular UC academic program. Students receiving financial aid can apply their award to a program abroad. Studying abroad on one of these programs can often be a valuable experience for Language Studies majors and minors.

Awards, Honors, and Recognitions

Six of the Department’s faculty (current or emeriti) are Fellows of the Linguistic Society of America (LSA). In 2011 Professor Sandra Chung served as President of the LSA, in 2012 Chung was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and in 2017 Chung gave UCSC's Distinguished Faculty Research Talk. Professor Adrian Brasoveanu received the Linguistic Society of America’s 2014 Early Career Award. Five of the Department's faculty have received the Dizikes Teaching Award from UCSC's Humanities Division.

Department Website

General Catalog Information

More Information

Linguistics Department
University of California, Santa Cruz
1156 High Street
Santa Cruz, California 95064
(831) 459-4988