Director: Eduard Hovy, Ph.D.
Coordinator: Bonnie Glover Stalls, Ph.D.
Participating Faculty: Michael Arbib, Ph.D.; Robert S. Belvin, Ph.D.; Hagit Borer, Ph.D.; Dani Byrd, Ph.D.; Bonnie Glover Stalls, Ph.D.; Andrew Gordon, Ph.D.; Elena Guerzoni, Ph.D.; Jerry Hobbs, Ph.D.; Eduard Hovy, Ph.D.; Kevin Knight, Ph.D.; Ania Lubowicz, Ph.D.; Daniel Marcu, Ph.D.; Shri Narayanan, Ph.D.; Roumyana Pancheva, Ph.D.; Patrick Pantel, Ph.D.; Barry Schein, Ph.D.; David Traum, Ph.D.; Jean-Roger Vergnaud, Ph.D.; Rachel Walker, Ph.D.; Maria Luisa Zubizarreta, Ph.D.
Participating Researchers: Ulf Hermjakob, Ph.D.; Chin-Yew Lin, Ph.D.
Master of Science in Computational LinguisticsThe computational linguistics master's program trains individuals in computational techniques and linguistic theory as they pertain to Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Human Language Technology (HLT). Drawing on courses and faculty resources from the Computer Science, Linguistics and Electrical Engineering departments, this joint program emphasizes the development of a detailed understanding of the theory and computational practice of NLP and the roles of linguistical theory, machine learning and statistics. Special emphasis is placed on topical research issues as well as on important issues that have shaped this field over the last several decades. The degree emphasizes the development of multilingual capabilities in a variety of areas, with hands-on experience in technologies such as machine translation, information retrieval, information extraction, speech recognition, question answering and document summarization.
Admission RequirementsApplicants for admission must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with a GPA of least 3.0, satisfactory GRE and (for international students) TOEFL test scores. Also required is the ability to program with expertise in a computer language, such as JAVA, C++, PERL, LISP or PROLOG, and proficiency in basic linguistics (phonetics, phonology, syntax and semantics) with experience in data analysis. Strongly recommended is familiarity with machine learning, statistics and advanced knowledge or at least two years of study at the college level of a human language other than the student's native language. Applicants must also submit three letters of recommendation and a one- to two-page statement of purpose.
Degree RequirementsThe master of science degree requires 27 units (equivalent to nine graduate courses), with at least 12 units (4 courses) each in computer science and linguistics, and a final original research project. Although highly motivated students may be able to complete the course work in three semesters, the program is intended to span four semesters, and most students require more time to complete the final project. According to university regulations, a student has up to five years to finish the master's degree.
|Of the 27 course units required, 18 units must be from the core courses consisting of three courses each in computer science and linguistics:|
|CSCI 544||Natural Language Processing||3|
|CSCI 561||Artificial Intelligence||3|
|CSCI 562||Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing||3|
|LING 530||Generative Syntax, or|
|LING 534||Logic and the Theory of Meaning, or|
|LING 548||Lexical Semantics||3|
|LING 585||Computational Linguistics||3|
Up to six core units may be waived with special permission based on previous course work. In consultation with an advisor, students will need to take other courses to fulfill these unit requirements.
Students are expected to enter the program with a background strong enough to enable them to complete the program course work in two years. However, for those students with insufficient experience in a specific area, the following courses are prerequisites for the core courses:
|CSCI 201L||Principles of Software Development||4|
|CSCI 455x||Introduction to Programming Systems Design||4|
|LING 401||Advanced Phonology||4|
|LING 402||Advanced Syntax||4|
|Breadth Requirements and Elective||units|
|Six units must be from a short list of breadth requirements -- one course each in computer science and linguistics -- and 3 units (one course) is an elective.|
The breadth requirement for computer science must be fulfilled by one of the following:
|CSCI 564||Brain Theory and Artificial Intelligence||3|
|CSCI 567||Machine Learning||3|
|CSCI 573||Advanced Artificial Intelligence||3|
|CSCI 599||Special Topics (courses vary; only certain courses qualify, for example, Computational Approaches to Natural Language Dialogue Modeling)||2-4, max 9|
|EE 619||Advanced Topics in Automatic Speech Recognition||3|
The breadth requirement for linguistics must be fulfilled by one course from:
|LING 512||Language Variation and Language Changes||3|
|LING 527||Second Language Acquisition||3|
|LING 530*||Generative Syntax||3|
|LING 533||Language Universals and Typology||3|
|LING 580||General Phonetics||3|
The elective course may be any other relevant course (except directed studies or directed readings) from computer science, linguistics, electrical engineering, statistics, philosophy or neuroscience, selected with an advisor. Please see the course listings for descriptions, prerequisites and additional information.
InternshipsInternships with one of the research groups at USC or at a company are available to students and are encouraged but not required.