dictionary entry up close for bilingualism

Basic Certificate in the Interdisciplinary Study of Bilingualism

The Department of Linguistics and Asian/Middle Eastern Languages offers a basic certificate in the interdisciplinary study of bilingualism. The certificate provides students with an interdisciplinary understanding of bilingualism, drawing on developments in various academic areas to include the intersection of multilingual development and language disorders, language policy and planning, language variation in sociocultural contexts, multilingual/bilingual language acquisition, and teacher education. Grounded in a linguistic perspective of bilingualism, the certificate offers students the choice to pursue expertise in bilingualism studies in a number of directions, based both on the students’ prior educational expertise and future career trajectories.

Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the individual and social dimensions of bilingualism.
  2. Explain concepts relevant to bilingual and multilingual language development.
  3. Analyze the intersection of socio-cultural features such as gender, ethnicity, and status in language use and choice across various domains of use.
  4. Apply knowledge of bilingual (and multilingual) language development and language use (such as code-switching) to areas such as effective pedagogical practices for educating bilingual (multilingual) learners, clinical assessments and interventions of bilingual children, or language policies and language maintenance.
  5. Conduct basic research studies exploring questions relevant to bilingual (and multilingual) language development and societal multilingualism.
  6. Identify problems of social justice in multilingual workplaces and suggest solutions to ameliorate these problems.

The Basic Certificate requires a minimum of 13-15 units.

Courses and areas:

  • Linguistics 553
  • 3 units selected from Linguistics 420, 501, Spanish 448, Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences 300
  • 3 units selected from Anthropology 410, Language, Culture, and Society 300, Linguistics 551, Spanish 462
  • 3 units selected from American Indian Studies 460 [or Anthropology 460 or Linguistics 460], Dual Language Education 416, 515, Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences 514
  • 1-3 units selected from Linguistics 457, 499, 597, Speech Language Hearing Sciences 499, 595

Students must obtain a grade of C (2.0) or better in each of the certificate courses.

Transfer credit is sometimes possible for one equivalent course (or, rarely, two equivalent courses) taken elsewhere. All applications for transfer credit are evaluated individually by the Certificate Program. No academic credit for course work is granted for work experience. 

(1) Fill out the Certificate Enrollment Form and send to [email protected]

(2) Register and pay for the certificate. You can register, and pay for, courses for the certificate in any of three ways:

  1. as an undergraduate candidate for a bachelor's degree, taking the courses as electives. Information regarding fees can be found at the following web site: https://bfa.sdsu.edu/financial/student/tuition.

  2. as a graduate candidate for a master's degree, taking the courses as electives. Additional information is available at: https://admissions.sdsu.edu/graduate.

  3. through the SDSU Global Campus ("Open University"). Additional information is available at: https://ces.sdsu.edu/open-university.

For alternatives 1-2, you must have been admitted to San Diego State University through the regular application process. For alternative 3, no application or acceptance procedure is necessary; the SDSU Global Campus is the division of the university open to the general public. (Note: the course work and all Certificate requirements are the same regardless of the way you register and pay for them, and there is no difference between Certificates earned by individuals registering through Global Campus and those earned by individuals registering as admitted students.)

After completion of the coursework for the certificate, students should contact Darlene Bych ([email protected]) and provide an unofficial transcript showing that relevant coursework has been completed.

Contact Us

Gregory Keating, Program Advisor
Email: [email protected] | Phone: (619) 594-8688 | Office: SHW 201

Darlene Bych, Certificate Program Coordinator
Email: [email protected] | Phone: (619) 594-1915 | Office: SHW 215


Important Links

SDSU Catalog | Class Schedule