Studies & Degrees in Language and Communication Technologies
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Be it education, finance, travel, commerce, health or any other field, communication technologies are becoming central to most strata in life. In fact, since communication and language are so important to all human development, this fact comes as no surprise. However, understanding and correlating languages requires a large database of different languages, words and their varying properties. Some of the most common areas of research in this field include information retrieval, machine translation, formal semantics, question answering, human language understanding and processing, speech recognition and synthesis.
With the importance of communication literally skyrocketing to new heights, it was about time that universities started offering formal courses dedicated to studies in the field. In fact, language and communication technology was taken to a whole new level with the advent of computers. The need for a new conceptual framework for communication gave rise to various new fields such as Computational Linguistics as well as Natural Language Processing etc. Computer models can now analyze various aspects of language such as word structure, phonology, syntax as well as semantics. Applications based on language cannot possibly function with these tools.
Courses in Language and Communication Technology look to meet industry demands by offering an intersection of knowledge of language technology, computer science as well as theoretical and computational linguistics. These courses vary in duration depending on the university or college. However, they are all aimed providing students with training opportunities so they can fulfill the requirements of various companies and industries. Knowledge based on practical exposure is the key to these courses. If this can be achieved, students usually come out better prepared and skilled.
Generally, courses in language and communication technologies include subjects such as Language Technologies and Computer Science. The Language Technologies section will contain a foundational module apart from modules in Computational Syntax and Morphology as well as computational science, discourse and pragmatics. The computer science module may contain modules such as data structures, organization and processing, logic, computability, complexity, form languages and algorithms. You can also opt for advanced modules depending on what is being offered by the college. These modules can be related to topics such as artificial intelligence, computational psychology, Neural Networks, Information Retrieval and speech recognition.
Requirements and Skills
- Students with relevant Bachelor’s degrees in Cognitive Sciences, Language Technology, Linguistics, Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence, Mathematics or any other relevant discipline are free to apply to this course
- Students should be fluent in English or the language of instruction being followed at the university/college
- Good IELTS or TOEFL scores come in handy
- The student must have the drive and motivation to do well in the field
- Some relevant work experience in the field also comes in handy
Taking up academic or educational jobs is one of the most obvious options for students who study Language and Communication Technologies. Apart from this, a lot of IT companies also require personnel with similar qualifications. Other career options for students qualified in the course include management of multilingual information, content management, quality assurance, language strategy and so on.