Spanish Studies, General Linguistics and Literature Theory
Hispanic, English, Catalan, Arabic and French Studies
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We will emphasise topics needed in the further study of this discipline by means of reading assignments, task sheets, workshops and in-class discussion sessions. The course is organised thematically with six parts divided into twenty topics. During this course, you will be required to complete a total of 54 learning activities. There will be a student introductory assignment, eleven reading assignments, a idterm exam, a final exam, a research paper, two class presentations, and a participation grade.
This course introduces and examines the basic concepts of language and linguistics. This course will be of particular interest to you if you are just starting your studies in linguistics. It is intended to provide you with a general understanding and a broader context on the nature of language (and especially popular ideas and misconceptions about language) and help you synthesise and refelct on your linguistic knowledge.
- To make you aware of both the diversity of language systems and their fundamental similarities.
- To give you a reasonable taste of the major subfields of linguistics.
- To assist you in acquiring reference material and in participating in academic discussion in the field concerned.
- To equip you with some tools and techniques for linguistics analysis and to give you some practice in using these to discover the organizing principles of a language.
- To acquaint you with the basic concepts necessary to further pursue linguistic studies, if you wish to.
There are two main goals of this course: 1) to help you understand human language and the roots of modern linguistics; and 2) to help you develop the competence to formulate and carry out a research assignment, relevant for the area, with a high degree of independence and in a critical evaluating way.
Other aims of this course are:
- To lead you to examine your own linguistic beliefs and attitudes and their application to practice.
- To acquaint you with the basic concepts and terminology of the field of linguistics so that you can develop the ability to discuss linguistic questions using linguistic terminology.
PART III. THE DIMENSIONS OF LANGUAGE ANALYSIS
1.- An introduction to phonetics and phonology.
2.- Morphology and syntax: an introduction.
3.- The study of meaning: semantics and pragmatics.
4.- Understanding discourse analysis.
PART IV. INTERDISCIPLINARY FIELDS
1.- Historical Linguistics.
4.- Applied Linguistics.
PART V. RESEARCH PAPER
PART I. BEGINNING LINGUISTICS: AN INTRODUCTION TO THE STUDY OF LANGUAGE
1.- General conceptual goals.
2.- Why study Linguistics.
3.- Popular ideas about language.
- The equality of languages.
- The magic of language.
4.- Prescription vs. Description.
5.- The medium of language: speech, signing and writing.
6.- The languages of the world.
7.- Language and communication.
8.- Understanding linguistic methods.
PART II. AN INTRODUCTION TO THE HISTORY OF LINGUISTICS
1.- Early history.
2.- The Middle Ages and the Renaissance.
3.- Nineteenth-century linguistics.
4.- Twentieth-century linguistics.
Attendance and Participation Policy
Class attendance and participation are essential as most class periods will be spent in discussion of the assigned readings rather than in detailed lecture-type presentations of the readings. Consequently, class participation is an integral part of students’ performance evaluation (see Assessment). Students are expected to attend all classes, to arrive on time, to remain in class for the entire sessions, to come prepare, and to participate in class discussions. If you have trouble with a concept, it is likely that other students are as well, so take advantage of class time to discuss those topics that you feel need clarification and discussion. This will ensure the exchange of ideas and the clarification of puzzling questions. If for some reason you find it necessary to arrive late, you will be responsible for all information, including announcements or changes to the syllabus made during your absence. If you are absent for the entire class session, you are also responsible for all assignments and other announcements made during the class meeting. Every unjustified absence (see section Examination ‘Absences due to illness or other reasons’ below) will lower your final grade. Finally, if you come to class without having prepared your assigned reading for that day, you will not be allowed to participate in that session, and you will be given a failing grade. “I didn’t know what I had to do for today” or “I couldn’t read it because I had problems downloading the file last night” do not constitute a reason for failing to prepare in-class discussions.
Reading assignments, task sheets and workshops handouts will be posted in .pdf format on the Campus Virtual. They will be made available after being distributed in discussion sessions. If, for any reason, you miss a class, you are expected to download and prepare materials before you come to the next class session.
This course requires a considerable amount of reading. Some of the material presented will be relatively complex and may require careful study to be properly understood. You should, therefore, allow yourself enough time to read the material before you come to class. Doing the reading is indispensable for your understanding and your participation in class. Readings will be distributed in class and/or posted in .pdf format on the Campus Virtual sufficiently in advance. You are expected to read each assigned reading at least twice and do the pre-reading and post-reading in order to participate in class discussions. So, do not leave it for the day or evening before an assigned reading is due. In class we will attempt to pull together strands of the readings to show what fundamental issues and positions are represented and help you see the big picture. You must be ready to discuss each assigned reading in class. You may be called at random to answer questions and/or contribute to the discussion in class. Remember that your class work is enhanced by conscientious attendance and intelligent participation individually, in pairs and/or in group, and hurt by visible lack of preparation in class. Your reading assignments and discussion sessions grade will be based on both quality and effort.
The following list of course materials will allow you to review the course content as covered in class during the academic year. The files of this guide are organized by subject from easier to more difficult and from general to particular to help virtual learners understand the material and apply it to real life situations. In order to maximize learning, and in particular for beginners, it is highly recommended to follow the suggested order.
|Course Study Guide||171Kb||Adobe PDF||Download|
The link below comprises the course materials you are required to cover for both the theory and the practical sessions. In total, you are required to complete the following 54 learning activities: course syllabus, student introductory assignment, 11 reading assignments, 22 task sheets, 12 workshops, 6 lecture notes, and 1 research paper guide. If you are just starting your studies in linguistics, I strongly recommend you to follow the order suggested in the Course Study Guide.
RADFORD, Andrew; ATKINSON, Martin; BRITAIN, David; CLAHSEN, Harald y SPENCER, Andrew (1999): Linguistics: An introduction, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
BOTHA, Rudolf P. (1992): Twentieth Century Conceptions of Language. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.
RECOMMENDED SUPPLEMENTARY RESOURCES
As a University of Alicante student, you have access to library resources necessary to complete your coursework. In addition, you can find a number of Internet resources which may be of use to you in this course on the Virtual Campus (‘Enlaces’). Please be aware that Web addresses may change from time to time.
The books listed below are recommended introductory texts to the fields of linguistic study we will be using in Linguistics 8806 (all books are available in the Campus libraries):
FINCH, Geoffrey (2000): Linguistic terms and concepts, Series How to Study. London: Macmillan Press.
FINCH, Geoffrey (1998): How to study Linguistics, London: Macmillan.
CABTREE, Monica y POWERS, Joyce (comp.) (1991): Language Files: Materials for an Introduction to Language, Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 5th ed.
CRYSTAL, DAVID (1987): The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. A good review is: http://dannyreviews.com/h/Language.html.
Research paper. You will write a research paper (around 1,500 words, typed, doubled-spaced, 12 point type), due at the beginning of week 14 (Semester II). The main purpose of the paper will be to find out whether you understood the course material well enough to see the relationship among the data and to create some synthesis in your own mind, rather than to just regurgitate a more or less random collection of ideas. Keep in mind that this is to be an analytical paper, not simply a summary of your reading. No late papers will be accepted without proper medical justification. Further instruction about the paper will be given later in the semester (consult Research Paper Guide).
Class presentations. Each student will do an oral presentation in two topics (maximum 15 minutes per student for the Oral Presentations). Further instruction about the presentations will be given in: Workshop II – Preparing an oral presentation.
Class participation. Class participation involves regular attendance and active participation in group, pairs and classroom discussions. I will rely on you to evaluate your own participation as part of the final, but reserve the right to assign a grade if I feel that your self-assessment is inaccurate.
Special extra-credit (up to 1 extra point):
During the course, you may obtain extra-credit for the course if you participate in online discussions on the Virtual Campus forum (‘Debates’) for this course. Participation is entirely optional and is not required for you to pass this course. If you are interested in participating, please let me know before week 4. A linguistics discussion question/topic will appear in the discussion forum. The forum is to help promote student-to-student discussion; so I will not respond to each posting but will only moderate the discussion if necessary. You will be required to post a 150-200 word opening statement (each discussion question/topic) and then follow-up comments in English (minimum two) reacting to the ideas posted by other students. Those three postings MUST be placed on three different days! Although the tone of your discussion postings can be informal, I will expect them to be on a professional level. As with written assignments, the quality of your discussion postings will be graded on both content (50%) and presentation (50%). Since the purpose of special extra-credit is only to help you improve your final grade, no extra credit will be allowed until the regular work is done and you have passed the course.
Your course grade will be based on the cumulative point total from the following assignments:
0% Student Introductory Assignment (deadline: week 3)
20% Reading assignments and discussion sessions
30% Mid-term exam (date, time and location will be announced at a later date)
30% Final examination (60% if you failed or chose not to sit the mid-term exam)
10% Research paper (deadline: Semester II - week 14)
5% Class presentations (semester II)
5% Class participation
[Note: students only get credit for correct answers. If you feel that I have graded anything incorrectly or improperly, please contact me outside of class, preferably during my office hours. I will be happy to address your concerns]
Late Policy. Late work will not be accepted unless prior arrangements are made with me and you provide a written excuse.
Absences due to illness or other reasons. Health and compassionate concerns must be documented and notified within one week of having missed the class.
Honesty policy. I expect each student to do his/her own work. So, I have “zero tolerance” for cheating, plagiarism, submitting someone else’s work as one’s own, unauthorized collaboration on assignments and papers, using “notes” during exams, submitting work previously submitted for another course, or facilitating acts of academic dishonesty by others. The penalties are severe!
Explanation of assignments
Student Introductory Assignment. The Student Introductory Assignment (SIA) consists of introducing yourself to me by letting me know your unique needs and expectations for this course. It is designed to let me know you are in class and facilitate interaction. It is due in the first class session of week 3. Even though this assignment is not graded, you must complete it and hand it in to me on time.
Final examination. The final will be cumulative for the entire course. It will consist of true/false, multiple choice, short answer, and long answer questions. Dates: November 12, 2009 - May 25, 2010 - September 10, 2010.
THE INTERACTIVE MULTIMEDIA LINGUISTICS FOR BEGINNERS (University of Kassel)
ETHNOLOGUE LANGUAGE FAMILY INDEX Languages of the World - An encyclopedic reference work cataloging all of the world¿s 6,912 known living languages
THE HISTORY OF LINGUISTICS
Evolution of Alphabets by Prof. Robert Fradkin (University of Maryland)
A READER IN NINETEENTH CENTURY HISTORICAL INDO-EUROPEAN LINGUISTICS
HISTORICAL LINGUISTICS EXERCISES
INTERNET RESOURCES FOR LINGUISTICS (Memorial University of Newfoundland)
LINGUISTICS: A BRIEF GUIDE TO INTERNET RESOURCES
VIRTUAL LIBRARY: LINGUISTICS
LINGUISTICS JOURNALS (Linguistic Society of America)
LINGUISTICS JOURNALS AND NEWSLETTERS ON THE WEB (University of Rochester)
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT LINGUISTICS
WHAT IS LINGUISTICS?
LANGUAGE AND LINGUISTICS
WHAT IS LINGUISTICS?
Hamburg Sign Language Notation System, HamNoSys
Leaders of the XXI Century - Markku Jokinen
Spreadthesign.com - The sign language dictionary for the world
How many languages are there in the world? A paper prepared by The Linguistic Society of America
What is sign language? An introduction to sign language prepared by The Linguistic Society of America
Mini-lecture: The truth about sign language
Universidad de Alicante
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Tel: (+34) 96 590 3400Fax: (+34) 96 590 3464