Programme Description for ISCL BA-Studies

The B.A. study in International Studies in Computational Linguistics (ISCL) starts at the beginning of the winter semester and lasts for six semesters (3 years). These three years include the B.A. Thesis and final exams.

The first part of the programme concerns itself with the fundamentals of Applied and Theoretical Computational Linguistics and lasts for two years (4 semesters).

The following courses are obligatory for all students majoring in Computational Linguistics and will be taught during this segment of study:

  • Data Structures and Algorithms for Computational Linguists
  • Introduction to Computational Linguistics
  • Introduction to Mathematics for Linguists
  • Parsing
  • Text Technology and Quanitative Methods
  • Grammar Formalisms for Computational Linguistics
     oder
    Formal Languages and Grammar Formalisms
  • Three programming courses

Additionally, students are required to take courses for the General Linguistics minor.

The qualification exam concludes the foundation period.

During their main study period (5th and 6th semesters) students will be given the option to specialise in either Theoretical or Applied Computational Linguistics. 

During the fifth semester, students may apply for a semester abroad, either as part of a foreign exchange programme or for an internship.

To complete this study period, students are required to take part in two thematically different main seminars in Computational Linguistics, and a Software Internship.

Possible courses, for the main course of study are:

  • Computer Lexicography
  • Information Retrieval
  • Logic
  • Machine Translation
  • Mathematical Methods
  • Quantitative Methods
  • Text Technology

The Software Internship can be taken at the SfS or at another company of the student's choice, as long as it has been approved beforehand. The internship should span at least 160 hours of programming, and interns are required to submit a full report describing their work and to hold a presentation on their topic.

At the end of their B.A. studies, students should have acquired the following qualifications:

  • An understanding of the most important concepts of language and grammar theories and their respective characterisation techniques
  • An understanding of the terminology used in Computational Linguistics, as well as of the techniques and methods used to implement linguistic analyses in applications      
  • An understanding of the basic concepts of Computational Linguistics
  • Competence in linguistic models and familiarity with data types, grammars and abstract machines
  • Knowledge of a modern programming language and familiarity with at least one additional programming language
  • Extensive knowledge in either Theoretical or Applied Computational Linguistics

To complete their B.A., students have to submit a B.A. thesis (maximum 25 pages), in addition to an oral or written exam in their chosen subject. Students have the freedom to pick their preferred method of examination.

For more details, see the Study Plan.

Language of Instruction

During the first two semesters all courses, lab sessions, and lectures will be taught in English.

Exams can be taken in either German on English.

Course Grading

All courses are graded in accordance with the regulations of the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).

The final BA grade will be calculated from the courses. The weight of each course grade is dependent on the number of credits each course counts for. 

B.A. Examinations

Orientation Exam:

At the end of the second semester, students have to prove that they have completed the necessary credits for their first year in the B.A. programme. This can be done by submitting the certificates they received for each course.

Qualification Exam

At the end of the fourth semester, students have to prove that they have successfully completed the foundation period of the B.A. programme. Students' performances will be reviewed in a thirty minute consultation with their studies advisor, where they will discuss their possible choice of advanced B.A. level courses.

Final Exam

The B.A. Final Exam consists of three parts: The B.A. thesis, the oral or written exam at the conclusion of a major course, and the software internship.

You will find detailed exam regulations in the program statutes.