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The department does not accept applicants for a Master of Arts degree. All graduate work in Linguistics at USC is taken as part of the PhD program, and the MA in Linguistics is intended only as a transitional degree in the process of completing requirements for the PhD.
A student admitted to the graduate program may choose later to earn a terminal MA degree, or may be invited by the department to attempt a terminal degree.
Students pursuing the PhD program in linguistics are required to complete 32 units of course work toward the MA degree. The choice of courses is subject to approval by the Graduate Studies Committee. In addition, students must satisfy one foreign language or research tool requirement. (See Foreign Language/Research Tool Requirement .)
MA Research Paper
In addition to course work and the foreign language/research tool requirement, students are also required to write one research paper the contents of which represent a distinct area. The completed paper must be submitted to the Graduate Studies Committee no later than the student's fourth semester of graduate study by the deadline established for that academic year. Following submission of the research paper, each student will conduct an oral defense of his or her work.