Explore Our History

CanIL in the Past

Originally named Canada Summer Institute of Linguistics, CanIL began as a department of Wycliffe Bible Translators, in the summer of 1985 at Trinity Western University. In the early 1990’s, Fall and Spring semesters were added to provide a one-year pre-field training package. No longer just a summer program, the name was changed to Canada Institute of Linguistics. In the late 1990’s, student enrolment hours increased exponentially. CanIL officially became the newly formed Linguistics Department for TWU and began offering a BA in Linguistics and a TESL Certificate program. A Master’s in Applied Linguistics & Exegesis was offered through ACTS Seminaries, also located on the TWU campus. At the time, the offices, classrooms, library and computer lab of CanIL were all housed in a 3,000 square foot portable building.

CanIL Today

In 2000, CanIL incorporated separately from Wycliffe Bible Translators. In 2003, the CanIL Harvest Centre was built on the Trinity Western University campus. The three-storey building provided 32,000 square feet of space for rising enrolment, with large well-equipped classrooms, extensive computer labs, a spacious dining area with a common kitchen area, and numerous offices. A goal of the CanIL leadership and stakeholders has been to make it possible for students to complete their education debt-free. CanIL offers numerous bursaries, awards, matching grants, scholarships, and paid work experience programs. Students who take advantage of these funds are able to cover all of their tuition costs and even some of their living expenses. As a result, many CanIL graduates are freed from the burden of debt and able to pursue their chosen career paths. CanIL has been offering quality linguistic and literacy training in Canada since 1985. Our programs have been steadily growing as more students from all over the world are drawn to our highly experienced faculty. CanIL alumni have successfully gone to serve language communities in more than 40 countries. They do linguistic research, literacy development, language survey, orthography development, language software development, Bible translation, teaching English as a learned language, and many other linguistic and cross-cultural activities.
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