Overview

Tigrinya is one of the major Ethiopian Semitic languages spoken by more than 6 million people in Ethiopia, with almost the same number of speakers in Eritrea. It has a long history of oral and written literature and is closely related to Ge’ez, an ancient Ethiopian language with a long-standing literary tradition. Tigrinya also shares a number of features with other Semitic Languages such as Amharic, Guragigna and Arabic.

Tigrinya started as a Unit by offering Tigrinya as a minor area of study for students majoring in Amharic, English, and other Social Science disciplines.  Then the Unit became a full-fledged degree-offering program in 2008. Since then, four consecutive batches have graduated with BA degrees in Tigrinya.

The Department of Tigrigna was established with the thrust to provide qualified teachers for schools and support the teaching-learning process in the Tigray Region, where it is the official language and a medium of instruction in schools. Since its establishment in 1987 as a minor program in the former Department of Ethiopian Languages and Literature, it provided qualified personnel to schools and other administrative bureaus.

Currently, the Department has completed all the necessary preparations to launch a Master’s program with an eye to engage its staff in extensive research activities and provide students with even higher education.

Graduate Profile

Up on graduation, Tigrigna Language, Literature and Folklore professionals will demonstrate the following competencies:

  • Understanding of linguistic concepts;
  • Ability to use various linguistic and literary theories to explain the workings of human society and social realities in general and Tigray society in particular;
  • Demonstrating ability to apply linguistic and literary theories in independent, group as well as in multi-disciplinary research;
  • Competency in using different research formats in linguistics, literature and folklore for the Tigrigna language;
  • Being conversant  in interpersonal dialogues, and proficiently communicate linguistic and literary  ideas in writing and oral delivery;
  • Being familiar with literary concepts and literary theories;
  • Ability to  analyze, evaluate, and debate on pertinent public language and culture-related policies and decisions at international, national and regional levels;
  • Ability to promote active participation and effective teamwork in solving societal problems while maintaining appropriate professional and ethical standards;
  • Being empathic to advocate on behalf of disadvantaged groups, including minority languages and cultures;
  • Demonstrating familiarity with the theories and practices of folklore;
  • Ability to compose creative fictional and nonfictional literary works;
  • Ability to work on projects with language development strategies:  translation and terminology;
  • Collecting and document folklore materials recognized as ordinary, living and legitimate and not as marginalized relics;
  • Preparing literary materials, working as literary critics, showing the value of various texts of prose and poetry;
  • Gathering, organizing and writing articles for the mass media, brochures, newsletters, speeches, reports and participating in editing activities.

Objectives of the Program

 General Objective

The general objective of Tigrigna Language, Literature and Folklore’s undergraduate program is to train competent students who are well-versed in knowledge, theories, skills, values, attitudes and methodologies in linguistic and literary approaches and thus can contribute in development endeavors of the Ethiopian society at large by offering professional services at local, regional, national, governmental and non-governmental organizations, in addition to being qualified in all aspects of competencies so that they can match the world of work.

 Specific Objectives

The specific objectives of the Tigrigna Language, Literature and Folklore’s undergraduate program are to:

  • produce graduates capable of integrating social science, linguistics and literary theories with research and practice;
  • conduct and document scientific research and produce knowledge on the dynamics and complexities of various cultural phenomena in the country;
  • produce graduates who are well-equipped with language skills to identify the causes and consequences of social problems;
  • produce graduates who are competent in language  policy and program formulation, evaluation and analysis;
  • equip graduates with the requisite professional and communication skills and attitude necessary to work with individuals, diverse groups and communities;
  • produce graduates that have sound understanding, sense of respect and tolerance for cultural diversity.