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PULSAR Undergraduate Program

PULSAR is an interdisciplinary program for undergraduate students.  The University of Maryland has the largest and most integrated team of language scientists in North America, and PULSAR enables undergraduates to tap into this unique resource, providing them with opportunities beyond those found in their primary major. The program accepts new students each semester. Applications are typically due in October-November for the Spring and March-April for the Fall.

Applications are open to join PULSAR in Spring 2022!

Deadline Friday December 10th, 2021

Apply online here. Please email pulsar@umd.edu with any questions.

You can read more below, find out how to apply, check out the description of PULSAR activities and benefits, or read our FAQ.

Some current and recent PULSAR students

Abby Kameny

Michele Liquori
Hearing and Speech Sciences

Jan Michalowski

Vera Yevsukov
Physiology, Neurobiology; Russian

Sade Evans
Physiology, Neurobiology; Spanish

Rebecca Higgins
Hearing and Speech Sciences

Oliver Bentham
Computer Science

Sarah Elazar
Hearing and Speech Sciences

Mariam Aiyad

Ayesha Hayat
Hearing and Speech Sciences

Emily Gong
Computer Science

Eli Kane

Dani Otarola
Hearing and Speech Sciences

Belan Chimamanka'a

Nadiya Klymenko
Mathematics; Computer Science

Nataliya Stepanova
Mathematics; Linguistics

PULSAR graduate student mentors, Fall 2021:

Lauren Salig

Neuroscience and Cognitive Science


Christina Blomquist

Hearing and Speech Sciences

The PULSAR program develops students’ abilities in integration, communication, discovery, and leadership – skills that are in high demand in today’s society.  It does so by building on a highly successful interdisciplinary graduate program that has run since 2008, and which has already created  a community of 100+ students and faculty from 10 departments.

Members of PULSAR join a broad community of students, researchers, and faculty from areas such as Computer Science, Psychology, Hearing & Speech Sciences, Electrical Engineering, Human Development, Special Education, the iSchool, the School of Public Health, Linguistics, and the School of Languages, Literatures, and Culture.

As members of PULSAR, students have opportunities to build their résumés, develop a relationship with a scientific mentor, and become a member of a strong, collaborative group of peers.  With the PULSAR program, we aim to provide undergraduate students with a breadth of experiences and training that can prepare them for careers in research, technology, education, health, and public policy.

PULSAR is run through the Maryland Language Science Center, which brings together the many different researchers, faculty, and students at the University of Maryland who are interested in the study of language.  Our goals are to understand how human language works, how to replicate this success in machines/technology, and how to help individuals learn language more effectively and recover from language related deficits. UMD’s language science community offers unparalleled opportunities for interdisciplinary training in language.

Language Science draws from diverse fields, including technology-related fields such as computer science (including natural language processing and machine translation), education-related fields such as second-language acquisition, special education, and curriculum development, and health-related fields such as speech/language pathology, audiology, aging, and public health.  It also includes domains that study how the brain works, such as psychology, neuroscience, genetics, biology, and cognitive science, as well as traditional language fields such as linguistics and the study of various languages. This breadth of involvement provides the study of language science with unparalleled connections to a wide range of employment opportunities.

 Find out more or apply online.