Capstone Project

The CLA requires students to complete a capstone project in order to earn a BA degree. Students satisfy the capstone requirement in Linguistics by producing a 15-20 page research paper. The capstone paper is written and revised during the Capstone Seminar (LING 4901W) and may build upon previous coursework (e.g. a term paper, squib, group project, or oral presentation). The final paper should demonstrate students' understanding of the mode of inquiry characteristic of Linguistics, in addition to mastery of its core analytical and conceptual tools. 

Capstone project requirements for students in the University of Minnesota Honors Program are different. See the honors section for information.

LING 4901W - Capstone Seminar

LING 4901W is offered on an S-N basis only. By University and College policy, the quality of your paper must be good enough to earn at least a C-, although it is anticipated that most senior linguistics majors will produce higher quality papers for their final projects.

Prerequisites for admission to LING 4901W

  • Linguistics major status
  • Completion of most of the course work for the major
  • Students should demonstrate preparation for the seminar in the form of a detailed outline of their proposed research paper and evidence of qualifications to do the necessary research on the chosen topic.

Sample capstone project titles

The following are some of the capstone papers written by linguistics students in recent years:

  • No Verb is an Island: The secondary effects of verbal semantics, and the semantic effects of secondary verbs
  • Spanish-English Bilingual Effects on Child Phonology: An Optimality Theory Perspective
  • Verbal and Nonverbal Repetition in Storytelling
  • The status of person deixis in ASL
  • Computing scalar implicatures: Do we underestimate children?
  • The use of the subject-pronoun by native speakers of Guatemalan Spanish Abkhaz: A description
  • Berber syllable structure
  • The structure of infinitival verbal complements
  • Triggering V2 in English
  • Challenges related to Korean-English bilingualism