The English language and linguistics is important in different fields. The market for grammarians and linguists has continued to broaden to areas such as teaching, lexicography, translation, media and language and speech therapy among others. This shift demands a curriculum that caters for the job market needs. It is for this reason that the Department seeks to redefine the role of linguists in academics and language-related fields. It trains professionals in linguists better suited to meet the challenges that linguistic diversity poses for the Kenyan academia and the society at large, today and in the future.

The Department of English and Linguistics is one of the oldest and well established in the country. It believes it is important to train people who are well-grounded in English grammar and linguistics, both general and theoretical. English grammar is the bedrock of all the language skills. Now that the medium of instruction right from mid -primary to the tertiary level is English, a mastery of the grammar of English is imperative. In linguistics, the emphasis is on African languages because much of the literature available is mainly based on Western languages and thus does not account for a lot of the linguistic phenomena evident in African languages. It is, therefore, necessary to expose the students to our languages as well.
There aren’t enough linguists in the market and our graduates would be employed as consultants in language matters, curriculum developers, material developers, policy makers, teachers, tutors, lecturers, researchers, lexicographers, translators and media personnel among others.


  1. To train grammarians and linguists
  2. To expose students to data from different languages, African ones included.
  3. To create a data bank of African linguistic phenomena in all components of language

Entry Requirements

  1. The common regulations for admission to the University shall apply.
  2. In addition to meeting the entry requirements for admission to the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, a candidate shall not have less than a B pass in English in the KCSE or its equivalent.

Course Requirements for B.A. Students
A candidate who combines English with another language e.g. Kiswahili or French shall not be required to take the units of the department of English and Linguistics which concern the general study of language or linguistics in the other language.


Degree Pattern

  1. 3:3:2:2 - A candidate takes three units in English in the first year, for units in the second year, and six units in the third and fourth year.
  1. 3:3:2:1- Three units in the first year, four in the second year, six units in the third year and twelve in the fourth year respectively.
  2. 3:3:2:1- Three units in the first year, four in the second year and twelve units in the third and fourth year respectively.

Courses Offered for Both B.A. and B.ED Students



Core Units
AEN 100: An Introduction to the Study of Language
AEN 101: An Introduction to the Grammar of English
AEN 102 The Use of English for Academic purposes


Core Units
AEN 200: An introduction to Phonetics and Phonology
AEN 201: Description of Modern English
AEN 202: Phonology of English
AEN 203: Morphology, Syntax and Semantics


Core Units
AEN 300: Phonetic and Phonological Analysis
AEN 301: Discourse Analysis
AEN 302: English Grammar and Usage
AEN 303: Second Language Acquisition

Elective Units
AEN 304: Comparative study of Language
AEN 305: Geographical Linguistics
AEN 306: Psycholinguistics
AEN 307: Research Methodology
AEN 308: Advanced study of style and Register in English
AEN 309: Linguistics and the Study of Literature
AEN 310: Origins and Development of English
AEN 311: Language and Speech Disorders
AEN 312: Principles of Text Writing


Core Units
AEN 400: Advanced Theoretical Studies in Grammar
AEN 401: Varieties of English
AEN 402: English Semantics and Pragmatics
AEN 403: Sociolinguistics

Elective Units
AEN 404: Linguistics and Language Teaching
AEN 405: Functional Grammar
AEN 406: Socio-Psychology of Language and Communication
AEN 407: Linguistic Typology and Language Classification
AEN 408: Dialectology
AEN 409: Research Project (2 units)
AEN 410: History of Linguistics


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