Master of Applied Linguistics and Exegesis

The Master of Applied Linguistics and Exegesis (MLE) is a specialized graduate degree program that trains students in the techniques of applied linguistics and interpretation of biblical texts for effective cross-cultural communication and ministry. Graduates will be prepared to produce the following: scientific descriptions of languages and cultures, literature and materials for literacy instruction, and translation of the Bible. This program is offered by ACTS Seminaries in cooperation with the Canada Institute of Linguistics on the campus of Trinity Western University. Faculty involved in this program have extensive hands-on experience in applied linguistics, computer applications, literacy, community development, and Bible translation in languages around the world.

The Bottom Line

How long is the program?
2-2.5 years

How many semester hours?
54 total sem hrs

What is the current cost?
$470/sem hr

How much does an average semester cost?
$4230 (9 sem hrs)

How much financial aid Is available?
ACTS offers financial aid based on need.
CanIL offers an entrance scholarship of $3000.
CanIL offers an average of $1500/sem for students enrolled in 3 or more CanIL linguistic courses.
CanIL offers church matching grants of up to $6000/yr for students enrolled in 3 or more CanIL linguistic courses each semester of a full academic year.
There are also work programs available to select students.

Program Requirements

Each student is assigned an advisor for assistance in course selection. It is recommended that all students enter the program in the 9-week Summer at CanIL program which helps meet other course prerequisites. MLE students should note that while the courses listed below have LING department extensions, ACTS cross-lists these courses with a 3 letter LIN department extension.

Prerequisite Courses (4 courses, 12 sem. hours)

LING-210 Language and Society 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring, Summer

This course focuses on the interaction between language and the social context within which it is used. Topics include: regional and social dialects; multilingualism; language attitudes and their impact on national and personal identity; linguistic politeness; the maintenance, shift, loss, and spread of languages; and the impact of modern technology. Applications to gender and education are explored in depth.

This course can alternatively be taken in an online format. Refer to Language and Society ONLINE.

LING-210 Language and Society – ONLINE VERSION 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring, Summer

This online course focuses on the interaction between language and the social context within which it is used. Topics include: regional and social dialects; multilingualism; language attitudes and their impact on national and personal identity; linguistic politeness; the maintenance, shift, loss, and spread of languages; and the impact of modern technology. Applications to gender and education are explored in depth.

This course can alternatively be taken in the standard classroom format.

LING-310 Articulatory Phonetics 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring, Summer

This course provides a theoretical and practical introduction to the broad range of human speech sounds that are found in the languages of the world. Through practice inside and outside of the classroom, students will learn to recognize and produce the various sounds, transcribe them with phonetic symbols, and describe how they are produced. Attention will also be given to other phonetic details such as tone, intonation, stress, and duration.

LING-330 Phonological Analysis 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring, Summer

Theory of language sound systems, principles of analysis of sound systems, and principles of forming an orthography. Opportunity will be given to apply these principles to a wide range of natural language data.

Co-requisites:

LING 310 Articulatory Phonetics

LING-360 Morphosyntax I 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Summer

This course deals with theories of grammar and principles of language analysis: morphology, syntax, stems, words, phrases and sentences. Problem solving with data from a variety of languages is a major part of the course.

Co-requisites:

LING 310 Articulatory Phonetics

LING 330 Phonological Analysis

Core Courses (13 courses, 36 sem. hours)

Advanced Exegesis 3 Sem. Hours

Typically this is a BNT or BOT course which is taken after Intro Greek/Hebrew and Hermeneutics with the intent of applying exegetical principles. There is some flexibility with respect to this course.

BIB-500 Intro to Bible 2 Sem. Hours Fall, Summer

An introduction to biblical studies in the seminary setting, designed to deepen the student’s overall understanding of the biblical literature and to provide an orientation to the disciplines of graduate-level biblical research. The course includes an overview of the documents of Christian Scripture, considering structure, content, major themes, literary forms, chronology, 1st century historical-cultural setting, composition, and canonical interrelationship. It also exposes the student to key issues and prominent schools of thought in biblical research, and seeks to enhance the student’s own competence in the skills of biblical study.

BIB-505 Biblical Hermeneutics 3 Sem. Hours Spring, Summer

This course focuses on the development of a systematic approach to the interpretation of Scripture. Although reference is made to various interpretative systems and strategies, special attention is given to the historical-grammatical method. The predominant literary genres of the Bible are examined and relevant principles of interpretation highlighted. Emphasis is placed on understanding the original, intended meaning of Scripture in its canonical context as the basis upon which to prepare expositions and make appropriate contemporary applications.

Prerequisite: BIE 500 or equivalent.

BOT/BNT-501 Hebrew I / Greek I 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Summer

BOT-501: This course constitutes the first half of an introduction to the elements of Hebrew grammar, with an emphasis on morphology, phonology, parsing, vocabulary building, reading, and translation of simple sentences.

BNT-501: The student is introduced to the basic features of New Testament Greek, including grammar, vocabulary, and oral reading. The result is the ability to read the simpler portions of the New Testament with the aid of a Greek Lexicon.

BOT/BNT-502 Hebrew II / Greek II 3 Sem. Hours Spring, Summer

BOT-502: This course constitutes the second half of an introduction to the elements of Hebrew grammar, and includes coverage of the remaining paradigms, development of parsing skills, and an introduction to the basics of syntax. By the end of the course, the student should be able to translate selected portions of the Hebrew Bible with the aid of a lexicon and to parse regular verb forms.

BNT-502: The student continues in the basic features of NT Greek, with emphasis on some of the more complex aspects of Greek grammar. Vocabulary development and reading practice will be emphasized. As a result the student will gain proficiency in reading the Greek Testament and will be prepared for exegetical study.

CHOOSE from ONE of these five courses (click here for the list) 3 Sem. Hours

Note: For further details, including sem. hours, semesters offered, and course descriptions see these courses in the Electives list below.

LIN-581 Anthropological Linguistics: Ethnography

LIN-571 Training Across Cultures

LIN-583 Language Programs Design & Management

LIN-593 Semantics & Pragmatics

LIN-691 Discourse Analysis

LING-560 Morphosyntax II 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Summer

This course explores the rich variety of syntactic and semantic structures found in human language, deepening the students’ understanding of syntactic phenomena addressed in the prerequisite course (360). The topics are examined within the framework of a current theory of Syntax.

Prerequisites:

LING 360 Morphosyntax I

LING-570 Language and Culture Acquisition 3 Sem. Hours Fall

This course introduces students to theories of second language and second culture acquisition. Students develop and evaluate self-directed strategies based on personal learning styles. Practical experience in the above topics is gained by working with a speaker of a non-Indo-European language.
NB: LING 560 and 580 are recommended in the same semester.

LING-580 Field Methods: Data Management & Analysis 3 Sem. Hours Fall

Practical methodology for managing, analyzing and describing language data. Working with a native speaker of a non-Indo-European language, students gain experience in the ethics of fieldwork, techniques of data collection and recording, analysis using the scientific method and the use of linguistic software.
Please note that LING LING 361 and LING 362 can be used as a prerequisite instead of LING 360 Grammatical Analysis.
NB: LING 560 is recommended in the same semester.

Prerequisites:

LING 210 Language and Society

LING 310 Articulatory Phonetics

LING 330 Phonological Analysis

LING 360 Grammatical Analysis

LING-585 Principles of Translation 3 Sem. Hours Spring, Summer

This course covers the process of translating from a source language to a target language. Students will develop skill in understanding a message as originally communicated in one language and cultural setting, and in communicating essentially that message in a very different language and culture. Discussion includes source language, target language, and cross-language transfer, with particular attention to the translation of Scripture.

Prerequisites:

LING-LIN 560 Morphosyntax II

LING-LIN 570 Language and Culture Acquisition

LING-LIN 580 Field Methods: Data Management & Analysis

RES 500 Research Strategies 2 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring, Summer
THS-540 Intro to Theology 2 Sem. Hours Spring, Summer

An introduction to the study of theology, this course provides an overview of major theological themes and issues, set in the context of a brief survey of the historical development of Christian doctrine. We will discuss the basis, purpose, and essential language of theology together with its place and importance in the life of the church. Designed especially (though not exclusively) for students who have no background in formal theological study, this class lays a foundation for other theological courses in the ACTS curriculum.

THS-571 Introduction to Believers Church Theology 3 Sem. Hours Spring, Summer

This Course introduces the student to Believers’ Church theology. It begins with a study of the nature and necessity of doing theology in the contemporary world with primary attention given to the authority of God’s self-disclosure in Scripture, as well as discussions regarding hermeneutical issues from within a Believers’ Church perspective. The subject matter then concludes with a consideration of the nature, ministry, and mission of the church in the world.

Prerequisite: THS 540 or its equivalent.

Elective Ling Courses (4-6 courses, 12-18 sem. hours)

LING-555 Historical and Comparative Linguistics 3 Sem. Hours Fall

This course introduces students to language change. It considers how and why languages change and the role of language contact. It also presents different theories and methodologies useful for historical and comparative linguistic investigation. Through a series of guided assignments, students will investigate a number of related existing languages from a non-Indo-European language family and reconstruct significant elements of the phonology, morphology, and lexicon of the proto-language.

LING-566 Principles of Sociolinguistic Survey 3 Sem. Hours Summer

This course introduces the students to the rudiments of linguistic and sociolinguistic survey. The focus is on purpose-driven language survey design and appropriate subsequent reporting of the findings. Consideration is given to current issues in social science research such as the ethics of sampling, and statistical significance of sample populations.

Co-requisites:

LING 210 Language and Society

LING 310 Articulatory Phonetics

LING-571 Training Across Cultures 3 Sem. Hours Spring

This course provides linguists, translators and literacy trainers with principles of adult learning to increase their knowledge, skills and attitudes as effective trainers of adults in cross-cultural settings. Students will interact with literature in adult education; describe how these principles might apply cross-culturally; practice teaching using these methods; then analyze and compare approaches used in other cultures with practical application to training across cultures. While the focus is for training linguists, the principles can be applied to training adults in a wide variety of training situations.

LING-575 Scripture Engagement 3 Sem. Hours Summer

This course focuses on literature use as the goal of a language development project. The course is designed to create an early awareness of the interrelated parameters of literature use, its timing in language development planning, and the logistics of promotion and distribution. Topics covered include: culture variation and cross-cultural communication, the role of religion in culture, literacy strategies, promotion and distribution methods and strategies, and the role of non-print media. A few workshop sessions may be planned upon request for those already involved in a language program. Participants with sufficient field data and/or experience may work on their own data/projects for the class assignments, in consultation with the instructor.

LING-576 Acoustic Phonetics 3 Sem. Hours Fall

This course introduces students to fundamental principles of acoustics that are relevant to the study of human speech sounds. Students will gain a basic understanding of properties of speech sound waves and learn how to investigate these properties instrumentally using acoustic analysis software. There will be extensive practice interpreting acoustic displays such as waveform graphs, fundamental frequency graphs, and spectrograms. A major focus of the course is the effective use of these displays as an aid to correctly transcribing speech sounds and understanding their phonetic properties in the context of descriptive phonetic and/or phonological fieldwork. Significant attention is also given to the complex interrelationships among acoustic, articulatory, and perceptual correlates of speech sounds.

LING-581 Anthropological Linguistics: Ethnography 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring, Summer

This course introduces crucial concepts in anthropology and ethnography to linguists. It focuses on cross-cultural communication with an emphasis on participant observation as an effective methodology for such research. Students will collect and analyze data related to topics such as oral traditions, kinship, and social structure. They will be introduced to various tools for ethno-semantic analysis, including analysis of cultural themes and worldview, semantic domain analysis, and taxonomic analysis. Pre-requisite: LING 210 Language and Society or equivalent introduction to sociolinguistics.

Prerequisites:

LING 210 Language and Society

LING-582 Issues in Community Literacy 3 Sem. Hours Spring

The issues in community literacy work that are covered in this course include various program issues such as introducing literacy in an oral community, motivation for literacy, capacity building and sustainability, training of personnel and evaluation of the program, and using participatory approaches in all aspects of the program.

Co-requisites:

LING-LIN 584 Principles in Literacy

LING-583 Language Programs Design & Management 3 Sem. Hours Spring

This course covers principles involved in the introduction of literacy to ethno-linguistic minority groups. It includes orthography design, consideration of socio-historical issues, strategies for literacy programs, stimulation of local authorship, reading theory and instructional methodologies, and a literacy tutorial practicum. Under certain conditions a term paper may be substituted for the practicum.

LING-583 Language Programs Design & Management – ONLINE VERSION 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Summer

This course investigates the sociolinguistic and background factors upon which a language development program for speakers of vernacular languages may be based. Students learn to work with local people and agencies in designing and implementing a program to effectively meet the needs of specific language groups.

Prerequisites:

LING 210 Language and Society

LING-584 Principles of Literacy 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Summer

This course covers principles involved in the introduction of literacy to ethno-linguistic minority groups. It includes orthography design, consideration of socio-historical issues, strategies for literacy programs, stimulation of local authorship, reading theory and instructional methodologies, and a literacy tutorial practicum. Under certain conditions a term paper may be substituted for the practicum.

LING-586 Advanced Phonological Analysis 3 Sem. Hours Spring

An overview of current phonological theory with an emphasis on those theories that make a significant contribution towards the development of practical orthographies. In particular, students are introduced to Stratal Optimality Theory, which they apply to the analysis of problematic data from a number of different languages. The course also emphasizes descriptive linguistics and students are taught how to integrate insights from phonological theory into phonological descriptions. Minimum grades of B- are required for LING 310 and LING 330 (program prerequisites).

LING-587 Lexicography 3 Sem. Hours Spring

This course provides a theoretical and practical basis for analyzing the semantics of the lexicon, managing a lexical database and producing dictionaries for a variety of audiences including the local community, translators and linguists.

Prerequisites:

LING-LIN 580 Field Methods: Data Management & Analysis

 

LING-588 Literacy Materials Development 3 Sem Hours Spring

This course teaches students how to prepare basic pedagogical materials and early readers in languages that may not have a long written tradition. Special emphasis is given to teaching techniques for involving the local language community in the production of these materials.

Co-requisites:

LING-LIN 584 Principles in Literacy

LING-593 Semantics and Pragmatics – ONLINE ONLY 3 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring

This course provides students with the theoretical tools with which to study meaning at the word and sentence levels, and to explain how people interpret utterances in context. Students will study various models of semantics and pragmatics, and learn how to apply different approaches to the study of meaning in natural language.

This is course is only offered in ONLINE format.

LING-599 Philosophical Perspectives in Linguistics 3 Sem. Hours Fall

This course will examine the philosophical basis of human language and communication, with special attention to issues relating to semantics, discourse, lexicon, metaphor, and translation–all the areas that deal with meaning creation. There will be a critical review of some major schools of thought within philosophy of language and hermeneutics. These will be examined in light of current insights in textlinguistics, cognitive linguistics, and integrational linguistics.

LING-650 Survey of Linguistic Theories 3 Sem. Hours Spring

This course introduces students to a wide range of linguistic theories. Students read and discuss original works written from various perspectives and gain in the process a clearer appreciation for the range of views that exist concerning the nature of human language and its syntactic, semantic, phonological, and discourse properties.

Prerequisites:

LING-LIN 560 Morphosyntax II

LING-LIN 586 Advanced Phonological Analysis

LING-660 Topics in Morphology & Syntax 3 Sem. Hours Spring

An article based course providing an in-depth exploration of current issues in the linguistic subfields of Morphology and Syntax. The types of topics addressed include: wordhood, clitics, grammatical relations, voice, valence, transitivity, noun incorporation, control constructions, raising, reflexivity & reciprocalization, complementation, evidentiality, secondary predication, and iconicity & economy. Students apply the acquired knowledge in producing a major paper.

Prerequisites:

LING-LIN 560 Morphosyntax II

LING-680 Advanced Field Methods: Analysis and Writing 3 Sem. Hours Fall

In this course, students transcribe, organize and analyze data from a non-Indo-European language and prepare a written description of phonological, morphosyntactic, or discourse features of the language. The course focuses on applying effective fieldwork methodologies and on developing the ability to write good linguistic descriptions that conform to established practices in the field of linguistics.

Prerequisites:

LING-LIN 586 Advanced Phonological Analysis

LING-LIN 580 Field Methods: Data Management & Analysis

LING-LIN 560 Morphosyntax II

LING-688 Tone Analysis 3 Sem. Hours Spring

This course introduces students to a methodology for tone analysis, focusing on the analysis of one field language and incorporating the insights of current theoretical approaches. They will also learn how to apply insights from the analysis of a tone system to developing practical orthographies.

Prerequisites:

LING-LIN 586 Advanced Phonological Analysis

LING-691 Discourse Analysis 3 Sem. Hours Fall

This course focuses on the question of how speakers of a given language effectively accomplish their communicative goals through the strategic use and shaping of language in both written and oral discourse. Students learn to identify different discourse genres, to chart texts for analysis, to discern hierarchical units within the macrostructure of a text, and to describe features of cohesion and participant reference, as well as identifying strategies in language for establishing the relative prominence of various streams of information. Special attention is paid to the interaction between alternate syntactic forms and their varying pragmatic functions in context.

Prerequisites:

LING-LIN 560 Morphosyntax II

LING-LIN 580 Field Methods

Graduating Tracks (1-3 courses, 0-6 sem. hours)

LIN-696 MLE Comprehensive Exam 0 Sem. Hours Fall, Spring, Summer

In order to graduate, students who pursue the non-thesis option must receive a grade of P (Pass) on written comprehensive exams.

MLE-803 Thesis Seminar 1 Sem. Hour Fall

The student is introduced to the world of academic scholarship, research, writing, and teaching. This objective is situated within a more general attempt to help students discern and prepare for their own contribution to the ministry of Christian scholarship. The course explores broad epistemological issues that shape research within the Christian worldview; it considers other specific issues and methodologies related to research writing in the field of specialization; and it helps students prepare for teaching in an educational setting. Students are challenged to develop skills of persuasion in the academic context, and to build a personal philosophy of scholarly ministry. In addition, the course prepares students for the specific task of researching, writing, and defending a graduate thesis.

MLE-831 Linguistics Thesis I 2 Sem. Hour Fall, Spring, Summer

The student works on their thesis under the direction of an advisor. Prerequisite: MLE 803 Thesis Seminar and a Program Committee-approved thesis proposal.

MLE-832 Linguistics Thesis II 3 Sem. Hour Fall, Spring, Summer

The student works on their thesis under the direction of an advisor. Prerequisite: MLE 831.

Fee: $150

 

MLE-834 Continuing Status 0 Sem. Hour Fall, Spring, Summer

The student works on their thesis under the direction of an advisor. Course enrollment tracks the student’s continuing status in the program and must be enrolled in until final thesis completion. Prerequisite: MLE 833.

Fee: $450/semester