Image of a teal coloured puzzle

Linguistics Olympiad for schools

School pupils of all ages and abilities can compete to solve linguistic data problems in the national Linguistics Olympiad

Linguistics is the scientific study of language and its structure. But not many people know much about it since it is not being taught in schools.

Even if pupils may be interested in linguistics, they don’t get the chance to study until University. That’s where the Linguistics Olympiad comes in.

Linguistic puzzles in schools

Professor Graeme Trousdale is a member of the Committee for Linguistics in Education, which aims to build bridges between linguistics and schools.

They set up the UK Linguistics Olympiad in 2009.  The Linguistics Olympiad is a school-based competition, like the Maths Challenge, involving puzzles in language and linguistics. It’s also completely free for schools to take part. Each year, several thousand school pupils take part in UK Linguistics Olympiad and at least one team enters into the International Linguistics Olympiad.

Everybody wants people who are good at dealing with data and thinking about data and analysing it – that’s what linguistics is about

Professor Graeme Trousdale,
Professor of Cognitive Linguistics at the University of Edinburgh

Get involved

Visit the UKLO website to try out past problems and find out how you can get involved:

The UK Linguistics Olympiad

Related links

Linguistics Olympiad | University of Edinburgh

Linguistics for everyone | Forward Thinking

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