About the Program
The Designated Emphasis (DE) in Indigenous Language Revitalization enables interested graduate students already enrolled in UC Berkeley PhD programs to specialize and obtain certification in language revitalization while pursuing a doctoral degree in their home departments. The DE in Indigenous Language Revitalization is not an independent degree-granting program. Students admitted to the program's DE and who complete its requirements will receive a notation to that effect on their doctoral degrees.
The DE in Indigenous Language Revitalization creates an interdisciplinary course of study, drawing together an intellectual cohort that will equip graduate students from various departments with knowledge of the methods, histories, and goals of Indigenous language revitalization and reclamation. The DE emphasizes interdisciplinary coursework and hands-on experience (through practicum or fieldwork credits) that center on the critical methods and histories of the attempted eradication, the persistence, and the revitalization of Indigenous languages in the context of colonization. While the content of the DE primarily focuses on Indigenous contexts in the Americas, it is relevant to Indigenous settings globally.
The DE draws upon and extends the unique resources available at Berkeley. The Linguistics Department has long been a leader in the study of Indigenous languages of the Americas (and throughout the world, e.g. in Africa and Southeast Asia), also supporting resources such as the Survey of California and Other Indian Languages and the California Language Archive. It has also been a leader in language revitalization. Indigenous community members and speakers teach and study at Berkeley and/or collaborate with Berkeley researchers. Community-driven language work is highly valued and supported. This rich intellectual heritage is the cornerstone of a DE that specifically trains and signals expertise in the area of Indigenous language revitalization. In Native American Studies and Education, courses and faculty research have long addressed the historical and cultural contexts of language loss; educational policies related to language; and the epistemological and cultural values of Indigenous languages. A critical mass of faculty and graduate students with shared interests in Indigenous language revitalization are working in linguistics, education, Native American studies, classics, music, romance languages, environmental sciences, biology, and anthropology.
Graduate students are invited to apply to the DE after completion of their first year at Berkeley. The application consists of the following:
- A completed DE application form
- A short statement (up 500 words) describing the applicant's interest in the DE and how it fits into his or her graduate studies and research goals
- An unofficial transcript of coursework at Berkeley
A current C.V.
A brief letter from the applicant's faculty advisor endorsing participation in the DE, sent under separate cover
All materials should be sent as email attachments to Johnny Morales Arellano (email@example.com). Applications are due each year on November 2, and the Executive Committee meets to review the applications and make admissions decisions shortly thereafter.
For further information regarding admission to graduate programs at UC Berkeley, please see the Graduate Division's Admissions website.
Designated Emphasis Requirements
Each student is required to take LINGUIS 251/LINGUIS C251A/EDUC C251A. This course draws components from each of the three core departments, focusing on historical contexts for language loss and challenges for revitalization; specific methods and theories for working with linguistic materials and collaborating with indigenous communities and speakers; and examining the results of language revitalization in cultural, linguistic, political and aesthetic terms. The course must be taken for a grade. (Another course can replace LINGUIS 251/LINGUIS C251A/EDUC 251 in special circumstances approved by the DE Head Graduate Adviser.)
Each student in the DE must take one elective course (that is not in the student’s home department), chosen from the following list of courses:
|Archaeology of the Americas: Archaeology of North America
|Archaeology of the Americas: California Archaeology
|Pacific Cultures: Archaeology of the South Pacific
|California Historical Anthropology
|Ethnography of the Maya
|Fundamentals of Anthropological Theory
|Fundamentals of Anthropological Theory
|Seminars in Linguistic Anthropology: Fundamentals of Language in Context
|Education and Migration: Indigeneity in Yucatan and Its Diaspora
|Native American Education: Critical Issues and Possibilities
|Language, Race, and Power in Education
|Theoretical Issues in the Study of Literacy
|Narrative across Learning Contexts
|Perspectives on Classroom Discourse
|ETH STD 250
|Research Seminar: Selected Issues and Topics
|Introduction to Linguistic Science
|Language Revitalization: Theory and Practice
|American Indian Languages
|Advanced Field Methods
|Advanced Field Methods
|Native American Studies
|Seminar on Advanced Topics in Native American Studies
With approval from the DE Head Graduate Adviser, a student may fulfill the elective requirement through another course (including courses at Stanford or UC Davis as appropriate) or through a 299 Reading and Conference course. Students should note that some of the courses above have prerequisites which would also have to be satisfied.
Each student in the DE must complete a field project ("practicum") related to language revitalization, a hands-on project, under the supervision of a DE faculty member. This may be carried out through a structured program, including, but not limited to, the American Indian Language Development Institute; the Breath of Life Institute in Berkeley or Washington, D.C.; and the Northwest Indian Languages Institute. A field project can also be organized directly in collaboration with speakers, teachers, or language activists; tribal language programs; other governmental language programs; or other entities. The practicum should involve work equivalent to 2–4 semester units (45-90 hours) as approved by the DE Head Graduate Adviser.
Qualifying Exam and Dissertation
The student’s PhD Qualifying Exam Committee and Dissertation Committee must include at least one member of the Indigenous Language Revitalization Graduate Group core faculty. The dissertation project must address or engage with issues or methods in language revitalization in some substantive manner, from some academic perspective. The representative DE committee member will evaluate the substance of the material.
Graduate Group/DE in Indigenous Language Revitilization
1203 Dwinelle Hall