Departmental Scholars Program in Linguistics

The Departmental Scholar Program (DSP) in Linguistics is a unique opportunity only available to current UCLA undergraduate students in a major housed by the Department of Linguistics.

Nomination as a Departmental Scholar is an honor that carries practical benefits– it allows exceptional seniors to pursue the bachelor’s and master’s degrees consecutively by simplifying the graduate application process and grants students access to graduate-level classes and research under the direct supervision of UCLA’s distinguished faculty. Additionally, the DSP provides undergraduates with the opportunity to earn a Master’s degree in just one year through the UCLA Department of Linguistics which does not offer a terminal Master’s Degree to outside applicants.

DSP applications are first reviewed by the department’s faculty and then the department will nominate students to the Dean of the Division of Honors and the Dean of Graduate Division for admission to the program. Upon approval from these two entities, the student is formally admitted to the DSP. 

The Department of Linguistics accepts applications for this program once per academic year and students are to apply the year they plan to complete their B.A. requirements in either the Spring or Summer term (Fall or Winter graduates are ineligible). Departmental Scholars begin taking graduate-level courses for the M.A. in the following Fall quarter alongside the new cohort of Ph.D. students. They are required to satisfy all of the M.A. requirements, including the Historical Linguistics requirement, which they can satisfy by taking 110 either as an undergraduate or a Departmental Scholar. To view the Linguistics DSP requirement checklist please click here.

        2024 Deadline: April 5th, 11:59 pm (PST)

All application materials must be sent to the Graduate Student Affairs Officer via email to

Eligibility for Admission

For the general program requirements, please visit the DSP page on the UCLA Honors Program website.

Students seeking nomination to Linguistics’ Departmental Scholar Program must meet the following minimum criteria by the start of the Fall quarter for which they have applied:

  • Completion of 24 courses (96 quarter units) at UCLA or the equivalent at a similar institution
  • A 3.5 overall grade point average
  • A 3.5 overall grade point average in a Linguistics major
  • Completion of Linguistics 103, 120A, 120B, 120C, and TWO of the following: 165A, 165B, 165C, and 185A. It’s recommended that applicants take ALL THREE of the following classes: 165A, 165B, 165C.
    *If students who took 102/119A want to apply for DSP, they should take 165A before applying to DSP. Then, during their DSP year, they should prepare to pass the Phonetics exam, especially the production part.
  • ALL B.A. requirements MUST be completed prior to beginning the Fall quarter of the DSP year (Spring or Summer)
  • Must be a regularly enrolled UCLA student at the time of nomination (Spring quarter of their senior year of B.A.)
The Application

The Linguistics DSP application consists of:

  • A completed Departmental Scholar Nomination Form
  • Two letters of recommendation from two UCLA Linguistics faculty members (LoRs should be sent to SAO directly by faculty)
  • A short statement of purpose commenting on your research interests and motivation to become the Departmental Scholar
    (The statement of purpose should also touch on your immediate and long-range goals in the field)

Departmental Scholars are not required to take the GRE. However, students planning to apply in the future to other programs or universities for graduate school should consider taking the GRE general test.

All application materials must be sent to the Graduate SAO via email at by the deadline listed above.

After consulting with the department, for additional information on and counseling for the Departmental Scholar Program, please  email to book an appointment with Honors Counselor, Angel Perez.