Welcome to the Summer Institute of Linguistics at the University of North Dakota where  you will be surrounded by the linguistic nerdom you crave while preparing to work with local languages all over the world.

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We specialize in language learning, linguistic research, literacy, language survey, anthropology, and translation. And we have a special program for sign languages. Your classmates and teachers spend the rest of the year all over the world working with different cultures and languages in real life. The program is very intensive, but well worth it—especially since you end the summer with up to 10 semester credits of fully accredited university courses. You get to work with real languages and real language data that you collect yourself. All while enjoying the close-knit SIL-UND community.

Here’s a welcome from our director, Albert Bickford.

contact Albert or the rest of us

what linguists do

So, maybe you’re wondering, “What do linguists do?” Well, we have the best jobs!   Whether we are exploring a language’s grammar for the first time, advocating on behalf of its users, translating from one language to another, or promoting literacy, we are working with unique cultures and languages and people around the globe. Variety, travel, intellectual challenge, stimulation, and witty, perceptive colleagues! Who could ask for more?

why choose SIL-UND?

SIL-UND is during the best two months of the year in North Dakota—early June to early August—one of most pleasant places in the U.S. to spend the summer.  This is perfect for someone pursuing a degree elsewhere or on a teacher’s schedule.  It also means you aren’t gone from home for long.

Another perk is that we are super family-friendly.  We have childcare available that is fun and safe, so you don’t have to leave your family behind—bring them with you!

Our staff work throughout the world most of the year and take the summer to come and share their knowledge.  Their real-life experience and enthusiasm makes them the best teachers. Bonus: they live with us! We can find them practically anytime to talk about school, life, careers… or anything.

We strive to keep costs low.  This means affordable schooling in a topic you love to give you the skills you need to be successful with languages, like you want to be.