Beyond the BA

Explore the many career options open to you with your degree in Linguistics or Speech Sciences.

Career Options

If someone says they are a “linguist” as a profession, chances are they mean an academic, and specifically someone who teaches and does research in linguistics at the university level. There are also some industry jobs labelled as “linguists,” most often with respect to computational linguistics. In order to pursue these paths, graduate studies (at least a Master’s degree) are required.

However, there are lots of other jobs out there that are related to linguistics! Another especially common track for many of our graduates is to pursue a career as a Speech-Language Pathologist or an Audiologist. Again, these are specialized careers that require at least a Master’s degree after the BA.

Beyond these two tracks, there’s an almost unlimited number of other options. Unfortunately, many job titles tend to be idiosyncratic to particular jobs or companies, so it can be a bit hard to find them. Some tips for getting started even thinking about your options include:

Sample Job Titles

Accent coachData analyst / scientistFreelance translator and editorLibrarianStandards engineer
Agency owner & executive editorDirector of conversation designHigh school teacherLinguistic project manager at a language tech companyStudy abroad facilitator
Behaviour interventionistDigital archivistHumanitarian aid workerMarketing content specialistText analyst
Client services managerDeveloper AdvocateInterpreterMedia language researcherThink tank researcher
Communications consultant / professional / specialistDirector of Education and Professional PracticeInternet LinguistMuseum curatorUniversity course coordinator
Community outreach coordinatorEditor and copywriterJournalistPR consultantUser experience (UX) researcher
Computational linguistEducational assistantLanguage creatorProduct managerTranscriptionist
Copywriter and brand strategistEducational development lecturerLanguage revitalization program directorSchool linguistResearch coordinator
Customer success managerEnglish as a second / foreign language teacherLearning scientistSoftware engineerMetadata specialist
CEO of a Software as a Service CompanyExhibition content managerLexicographerSpeech language pathologistTechnical writer
Sample of job titles, mostly ones given by participants in the interview series in Gawne & Cabraal (2023) / on Superlinguo. See links on the resources page.


It may be helpful in your job search and career planning to think about and identify the skills that you have that will help you find the right job for you.

We’ve listed skills that are often looked for in jobs relating to linguistics. Some of these are pretty discipline-specific, and it’s helpful to realize that you’re getting these skills as part of your BA training. Others are much more ‘transferable’ across lots of disciplines, but are also ones that you may have specifically honed during your courses.

This is not a comprehensive list, but neither would anybody be expected to demonstrate all of these skills! More discussion of these skills can be found in the research articles on the resources page.

  • linguistic meta-awareness
  • language analysis
  • language use analysis
  • language documentation
  • language acquisition
  • transcription
  • translation
  • phonetics/phonology
  • syntactic analysis
  • sociolinguistic analysis
  • semantics
  • specific language knowledge (e.g. of French, Mandarin, Swahili, etc.)

  • project management
  • research design
  • data organization
  • data analysis
  • quantitative / statistical methods
  • qualitative analysis
  • version control

  • annotation
  • programming (esp. Python)
  • machine learning

  • general communication
  • cross-cultural communication
  • interpersonal skills
  • teaching others
  • presentation skills
  • professional writing
  • ability to learn
  • flexibility
  • enthusiasm
  • creativity
  • innovation
  • attention to detail
  • organization
  • analytical ability
  • problem solving
  • ability to work in a fast-paced setting
  • working under pressure
  • ability to work independently
  • being resourceful
  • social media
  • document management
  • Word / Excel and their equivalents


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