Syllabus

English III: Focus on Linguistics

Code
EN2043
Points
30 Credits
Level
First Cycle Level 2
Faculty
School of Language, Literatures and Learning
Subject field
English (ENA)
Group of Subjects
English
Disciplinary Domain
Humanities, 100%
This course can be included in the following main field(s) of study
English1
Progression indicator within (each) main field of study
1G2E
Approved
Approved, 16 March 2015.
This syllabus is valid from 16 March 2015.

Learning Outcomes

The main aim of the course is to facilitate that the students acquire an in-depth knowlege of areas of specialisation in English studies. The course also aims to help students to develop their written and oral skills, as well as to develop and apply linguistic concepts to their analyses of spoken and/or written language.

Modules

1.
Bachelor Degree Thesis in Linguistics, 15 Credits

On completion of the module the student will be able to:

  • demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of one of the areas of English linguistics, including familiarity with current research questions of the area or subject
  • show the ability and skills needed to develop a research question and then independently search for, collect, evaluate and critically interpret and analyze relevant information
  • conduct an independent linguistic study with basic scientific value, some connection to current research, a relevant choice of method or theoretical application, as well as a clear argumentative drive, based on thoroughly carried out linguistic analyses within a limited frame of time
  • orally and in writing, present and argue for his or her own results showing a high level of communicative competence
  • analyse and discuss the scholarly work of others by pointing out strengths as well as weaknesses in the form of constructive response.

2.
Introduction to Linguistic Method, 7.5 Credits

On completion of the module the student will be able to:

  • account for basic types of data used in linguistic research
  • apply basic qualitative and quantitative methods for analysing linguistic data
  • critically discuss the limitations of commonly used methods for answering research questions about language
  • reason on how to interpret linguistic results, including how to evaluate what kind of information a given method can offer and how to estimate the potential range of variables that can affect results in linguistic research
  • critically evaluate linguistic data presented in previous research
  • apply different techniques for presenting both qualitative and quantitative linguistic data in scholarly writing.

3.
Social Variation, Language Contact and Power in English, 7.5 Credits

On completion of the module the student will be able to:

  • identify different factors explaining fundamental patterns of language use, variation and change
  • analyse linguistic interaction using sociolinguistic terminology
  • discuss the notions of language maintenance and death
  • analyse the effects of globalization and language contact involving English
  • discuss power relationships and their effect on language use
  • analyse how language policy and planning affect the use of English in the world
  • apply methods of sociolinguistic analysis (such as, those in ethnographic and variationist sociolinguistics) to instances of English language use
  • demonstrate a high level of spoken and written academic English.

4.
English Corpus Linguistics, 7.5 Credits

On completion of the module the student will be able to:

  • apply core corpus linguistic methods for linguistic research
  • show a raised awareness of how language is used lexically, semantically, grammatically, and pragmatically in authentic communicative contexts
  • show a deeper understanding of variation in the English language, based on variables such as register and spoken/written modes
  • critically evaluate prescriptive language norms from the perspective of usage data
  • account for the main concepts and fundamental ideas in corpus linguistics
  • design and carry out a small-scale research project based on corpus linguistics methods and present it orally and in writing.

Course Content

The course consists of four modules of which the students study three. Modules 1 and 2 are obligatory. The students then studies either module 3 or module 4 depending on availability.

Modules

1.
Bachelor Degree Thesis in Linguistics, 15 Credits

The module includes an overview of the linguistic research process, including the choice of topic, research question, methodology or theoretical approach, search for secondary sources, outline and the actual craft of academic writing. The student then carries out an independent linguistic study of a well-defined and limited problem area which is directly connected to the English language. The study is presented in the form of an independently written essay of about 20-25 pages (5,000-8,500 words). The course also consists of practice in the oral presentation and defence of the student’s own results and arguments, as well as of analyses of other students’ work.

2.
Introduction to Linguistic Method, 7.5 Credits

This module is an introduction to key approaches to the analysis of linguistic data. Students will learn about both qualitative and quantitative methods for analysing English language data. The methods will be applied and critically evaluated throughout the course, through actual data analysis in a workshop setting. Students will also gain some experience annotating or coding linguistic data based on a couple of sample models from the literature. Students will also explore ways of drawing on linguistic data from previous research, such as applying the scientific principle of replicating a study; this involves reviewing guidelines for academic integrity. The focus will be on using already available linguistic data, but there will also be some coverage of methods for collecting one’s own data, in ways which follow guidelines for research ethics. Students will also reflect on ways of presenting linguistic data in scholarly writing, such as a BA degree thesis.

3.
Social Variation, Language Contact and Power in English, 7.5 Credits

The module involves the deeper study of different topics within the sociolinguistics of English. Different factors that explain how people use the English language and methods of studying linguistic interaction are investigated, including power relationships between individuals. Theoretical approaches to the study of the relationship between English and society are discussed as well. The role of English in a global world is discussed, including how it affects other languages, both in terms of how languages are changed through adopting vocabulary from other languages and how languages can be put in danger because of the power of English.

4.
English Corpus Linguistics, 7.5 Credits

In this module, students will practise testing hypotheses about language with real data and, by means of computer-based tools, study how language is actually used. The course offers an introduction to empirical approaches to the study of language, specifically those developed within corpus linguistics. The topics examined will be relevant to areas such as lexicography and semantics; pragmatics and discourse; translation studies; and variation studies. We will examine variation and change across registers, dialects and modes, and evaluate linguistic norms from the perspective of usage data. Students will gain practical experience in using corpora and software for data analysis and for solving their own language queries.

Assessment

The course is examined through seminar participation, written assignments and the independently written thesis. The student’s ability to give and take constructive criticism during the work-in-progress will also be evaluated.

Forms of Study

The forms of study are lectures, seminars, assignments and individual supervision. Modules 2 and 4 also involve oral presentation of a delimited research project at a mini-conference. The thesis is defended and discussed at a thesis defence seminar. All teaching is conducted in English.

Grades

The Swedish grades U - VG

To get the grade of Pass with Distinction on the whole course, the grade of A or B is required for Module 1 and the grade of Pass with Distinction is required for one of the other modules.

Reporting of grades:
Grade for the whole course (U-VG)
Module 1: Bachelor Degree Thesis in Linguistics - 15 cr (A-F) [Obligatory]
Module 2: Introduction to Linguistic Method - 7.5 cr (U-VG) [Obligatory]
Module 3: Social Variation, Language Contact and Power in English - 7.5 cr (U-VG) [Optional]
Module 4: English Corpus Linguistics - 7.5 cr (U-VG) [Optional]

Prerequisites

  • English II 30 credits First cycle level 1 or equivalent knowledge

Other Information

Replaces EN2032.