Language Matters

The ability to use language is a unique and complex aspect of being human. Develop a strong foundation in linguistic analysis and think critically about language use, development, variation and change. You will learn from faculty with diverse interests that include Indigenous languages of North America, language development and the documentation and description of linguistic form and function.


Our students benefit from the individualized attention of award-winning faculty.


of our classes offer hands-on activities


languages spoken in the world


  • doctor Mizuki Miyashita
    Supporting the Blackfoot Language

    Dr. Mizuki Miyashita leads the Blackfoot Language Group as they produce materials for linguistics research and language teaching for the endangered Blackfoot language indigenous to Montana. The study and preservation of language is at the core of linguistics.

  • colang group photo
    CoLang 2022

    The UM Linguistics Program has been selected to host the Institute on Collaborating Language Research (CoLang) 2022. The institute offers cutting-edge workshops on language documentation and revitalization bringing together community language activists, linguists and students from Montana, the U.S. and around the world.

  • tribal stakeholders
    Connecting with Tribal Stakeholders

    UM linguistics faculty and students are engaged in the Collaborative Language Planning Project (CLPP). CLPP offers meetings and workshops for language workers, activists and stakeholders from the tribal colleges of Montana to discuss and share ideas to improve and enhance local language activities.

Video: Understanding Similarities, Appreciating Differences

Dr. Leora Bar-el discusses how languages define what it means to be human by exposing patterns of difference and commonality.