In keeping with the Department's focus on languages and civilizations, each member of the SALC faculty is expert in at least one of the major languages of South Asia as well as in disciplines and approaches relevant to the study of the civilizations of South Asia. Some members of the faculty have joint or multiple appointments in other departments or schools, and all of them work extensively with students in other programs in addition to teaching and advising graduate students within the Department.

Graduate students in the Department are working towards the PhD degree with research focusing on a wide range of topics in the study of South Asian languages and civilizations. Past students who have completed the doctoral program teach in universities across the world. Undergraduate students may pursue a major in South Asian Languages and Literatures through the Department's undergraduate program.