Prospective Students

Students with an interest in linguistics and/or TESOL should seriously consider applying for admission to San José State University. The LLD faculty has expertise that is recognized nationally and internationally. Our student body is ethnically and linguistically very diverse and our graduate students come with a wide range of experiences. We offer concentrations in computational linguistics and TESOL within the linguistics degree programs, as well as certificates in computational linguistics and TESOL for students majoring in other fields. Our research infrastructure includes a state-of-the-art computer lab and access to language data.

Financial assistance is available in a variety of forms including a limited number of teaching associate positions, graduate assitantships, LDC tutors, and awards.

Applications for admission are submitted to the university, not to the department directly. See the links below for information about how to apply to SJSU:

Graduate applicants: academic transcripts should NOT come to the department directly. Send transcripts to Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations, San José State University, One Washington Square, San José, CA 95192-0017.

In addition to the documents required by Graduate Admissions, applicants should submit two letters of recommendation.  Academic references are preferred, but professional (work) references are acceptable. The letters should be submitted directly to the Department of Linguistics and Language Development. Envelopes should be marked "Letter of recommendation for ..." and the applicant's name. Letters of recommendation may also be submitted electronically; for TESOL applicants, to TESOL Coordinator Dr. Scott Phillabaum (; for MA Linguistics applicants, to Linguistic Coordinator Dr. Julia Swan (

Applicants to the MA programs must hold a Bachelor's degree with a minimum grade-point average of 3.0. International students are expected to take a language proficiency exam. The TOEFL cutoff score for the Internet-based test is 90 (577 on the paper-and-pencil; 235 on the computer-based test). The minimum IELTS score is 7.0, and the minimum Pearson Test score is 68. Note that these scores are higher than the university's minimum scores.

No other tests (e.g. GRE) are required.

International students who have not yet achieved the minimum language proficiency test scores might consider intensive English language study at the SJSU-affiliated language school, International Gateways.