There is roughly 311 different languages spoken in the United States alone, with more than 6,500 languages spoken in the world. Globalization and increasing communication with foreign countries has increased the need for bilingual speakers. By entering into the field of Foreign Languages and Linguistics, you will not only master a second language, you will become a more diverse and thoughtful person.
There are many different majors you can explore within this field. Some popular choices include African Languages, Germanic Languages, Romance Languages, Iranian and Persian, and American Sign Language.
While focusing on one of these majors, you will be instructed in the dialect, philology, literature, culture and history of the language. Some of the courses you will take include Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced Languages, European History, Literature, and Religion.
Our 2023 Best Foreign Languages & Linguistics Schools ranking analyzes 254 of these schools to determine the best overall colleges for foreign languages and linguistics students. Explore this or one of our many other custom foreign languages and linguistics rankings further below.
While learning a new language it is necessary to have patience and perseverance. Some of these dialects are complicated and require practice and focus. It helps to have an ear for language and great attention to detail. To prepare for this field, students are advised to take prior courses in Foreign Language, History, Politics, and Religion. Take any advantage to study abroad while in college. This will give you invaluable, first-hand experience with the language and culture of a foreign country.
A high school diploma or equivalent is typically required for most foreign languages and linguistics degree programs and many students will need a minimum GPA and SAT/ACT score depending on the school. Specific foreign languages and linguistics careers may require a certain level of degree attainment or additional certifications beyond that.
There are various different levels of foreign languages and linguistics degrees. You can get anything from a in foreign languages and linguistics to the highest foreign languages and linguistics degree, a . Foreign Languages & Linguistics programs can take anywhere between one to four or more years for a full-time student to complete.
|Degree||Credit Requirements||Typical Program Length|
|Associate Degree||60-70 credits||2 years|
|Bachelor’s Degree||120 credits||4 years|
|Master’s Degree||50-70 credits||1-3 years|
|Doctorate||Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation||At least 4 years|
A bachelor's degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to foreign languages and linguistics, with approximately 37.7% of workers getting one. People currently working in careers related to foreign languages and linguistics tend obtained the following education levels.
|Level of Education||Percentage of Workers|
This of course varies depending on which foreign languages and linguistics career you choose.
A graduate with a degree in this field can enter into many different occupations. You would be well prepared to teach Foreign Language, English, History, or Literature in High School or teach a Foreign Language to adults. You could also continue your education in order to become a University Professor. If education does not interest you, you can work for the government in international relations or become a Foreign Service Officer. Other students may choose to become Anthropologists or Archeologists, Librarians or Museum Curators. Finally, another career choice is to become a translator or interpreter. Well-trained translators and interpreters are in high demand because of growing communication between nations.
Want a job when you graduate with your foreign languages and linguistics degree? Foreign Languages & Linguistics careers are expected to grow 8.5% between 2016 and 2026.
The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to foreign languages and linguistics.
|Occupation Name||Projected Jobs||Expected Growth|
|High School Teachers||1,095,500||7.5%|
|English Language and Literature Professors||92,900||9.8%|
|Interpreters and Translators||80,300||17.7%|
Recently graduated foreign languages and linguistics students earned an average of $31,182 in 2019-2020. Earnings can range from as low as $10,968 to as high as $69,870. As you might expect, salaries for foreign languages and linguistics graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.
Salaries for foreign languages and linguistics graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top highest paying careers foreign languages and linguistics grads often go into.
|Occupation Name||Median Average Salary|
|Foreign Language and Literature Professors||$79,160|
|English Language and Literature Professors||$78,150|
|High School Teachers||$64,340|
With over 7,549 different foreign languages and linguistics degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased foreign languages and linguistics school rankings to help you with this.
|Linguistics & Comparative Literature||8,539|
|American Sign Language||2,724|
|East Asian Languages||2,293|
|Classical Languages & Literature||1,428|
|Related Major||Annual Graduates|
|Liberal Arts / Sciences & Humanities||556,813|
|Visual & Performing Arts||149,215|
|English Language & Literature||54,635|
|Theology & Religious Vocations||27,459|
|Philosophy & Religious Studies||19,993|