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Is linguistics a science? Please explain with examples.

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Linguistics is a science because it is systematic, employs study, observation, and experimentation, and seeks to determine the nature and principles of language.

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Let's begin by defining “science.” According to the Collins dictionary, science is “systematized knowledge derived from observation, study, and experimentation carried on to determine the nature or principles of what is being studied.” Under this definition, linguistics, the study of language, is certainly a science, for it is 1) systematic; 2) based on study, observation, and experimentation; and 3) focused on determining the nature and principles of its object of study. We'll examine each of these characteristics in turn.

First, linguistics is systematic. Linguists examine the various elements of language in an orderly, precise, well-regulated manner. Some key elements include sounds and sound systems (phonetics and phonology), the forms and structures of words (morphology), the relationships between words in phrases and sentences (syntax), the meanings of language (semantics), the use of language in context (pragmatics), the role of language in human development and function (psycholinguistics), and the development of language over time (historical linguistics).

These systematic examinations draw their data from the observation of language, both spoken and written. Linguists study speakers directly as well as historical and contemporary texts to create hypotheses about language, to uncover evidence that supports (or refutes) these hypotheses, and to draw conclusions. Some linguists even conduct experiments when, for instance, they study how language develops in children or when they examine linguistic patterns. In these activities, linguistics is very much like other sciences.

Ultimately, linguists seek to discover the nature and principles of language. They want to find out what language is, how it works, why it has meaning, how it changes and develops, how it is used, and how it affects and is affected by the human beings who use it. New discoveries and theories are constantly shifting the picture of language as linguists practice their science and learn more and more about the ways humans communicate.

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Linguistics is a science. It is the scientific study of language. The term "linguistics" was first used in the mid-nineteenth century. It is an extremely broad field which encompasses grammar, phonology, and semantics. Before the mid-nineteenth century, the field was known as philology.

Comparative philologists, such as Sir William Jones (1746–1794), laid the foundation for what would become comparative historical linguistics. They discovered that Sanskrit resembles Greek and Latin in its influence on the development of languages and that languages often have a common source. (For instance, the five Romance languages are derived from Latin.)

Language acquisition theories are part of linguistics. Audiolingualism, popular in the 1950s and and 1960s, was based on behaviorism—habit formation. Accuracy, drills, and repetition are part of this teaching method. Noam Chomsky, an erudite scholar, refuted Audiolingualism. Chomsky claimed that children are born with a "universal grammar" and that habit formation is not central to language learning. As a language teacher myself, I make more use of the practical techniques of Audiolingualism than Chomsky's abstract theories.

Aspiring language teachers often study applied linguistics. This subfield is concerned with language teaching—including bilingual education in public schools.

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Linguistics, often defined as the study of language and the structures that make up language, can definitely be understood as a science. The word "science" has different definitions, and the one that might work best in the case of this question is Merriam-Webster's definition of science as "a department of systemized knowledge as an object of study."

The study of linguistics is made up of the various systems and branches of linguistics that can be examined by a linguist. Phonology, morphology, semantics, and syntax are all examples of linguistic systems, while branches of study include but are not limited to sociolinguistics, comparative linguistics, and even computational linguistics. Linguists also study phonetics, which concerns the complex interplay of sounds in language that are used when humans attempt to communicate with one another. Grammar is another example of a meaningful topic within the study of the science of linguistics.

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The term “science” is broad and poorly defined. Because of this, many things fall under the broad umbrella of science. Science is the study of a specific field using the scientific method, which uses data gathering and testing of a hypothesis to reach a conclusion about the subject at hand.

In these ways, then, linguistics can be seen as a science. Linguistics is the study of language or human communication. People who study this field use a form of the scientific method. They form hypotheses based on the historical usage of words and phrases or based on people’s reactions to language, and they put them to various tests. Because the field is somewhat different than hard sciences, the tests typically involve researching history or interviewing individuals to find data supporting their hypothesis. But, yes, in those ways, linguistics is a science.

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The definition of science, according to Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary is:

knowledge about the structure and behavior of the natural and physical world, based on facts that you can prove, for example by experiments

Science is subjects about the natural and physical world that are empirically to explain how it works and what its effects are.  Linguistics is the study of the natural and physical phenomenon of human language.  Therefore, it classifies as a science.

Linguists generally study how words are formed, how they sound, and why they are used.  They study the larynx, the tongue, the vocal cords, and the diaphragm, all of which are interconnected and used when we speak.  They take special note of nasal tone, inflection, diction, and clarity.  They are especially interested in regional dialects and colloquialisms, and are so good at what they do that they can listen to a person speak and tell immediately where they're from.

An example proving that linguistics is a science is that most colleges and universities around the country offer majors in various branches of Linguistics.  According to, linguistics is a valuable tool to help establish, strengthen, and understand how man communicates and why language is so important.

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