Linguistics is an interdisciplinary field which deals with language and its characteristics from the perspective of specific languages or language families as well as of the variety of linguistic structures and their underlying cognitive motivations in general. Both perspectives are interrelated. The M.A. Linguistics is a consecutive programme with a research-oriented profile. Students are required to choose between eight specialisations, one of which is a focus on African Languages and Linguistics, which is offered by the Department of Anthropology and African Studies.
At the core of the M.A. “Linguistik – Schwerpunkt Afrikanistik” (Linguistics with a specialisation in African Languages and Linguistics) is the study of the differences and commonalities of the structures of African languages, which has a functional-descriptive as well as typological outlook. As a discipline with a special interest in languages with little or no written language documents, African Languages and Linguistics relies heavily on field research, comprising different methods of the acquisition and analysis of linguistic data, including the employment of typological questionnaires.