LING 114 - A World of Words
Section: 001
Term: WN 2018
Subject: Linguistics (LING)
Department: LSA Linguistics
Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

This class will be devoted to the study of words: word histories, children's first words, lawyers' words, dictionary-makers' words, word meanings, the language police's words, teenagers' words, complex words, and words in sentences.

Students who complete this course will have a good grasp of the main ways in which linguists analyze and investigate words in the languages of the world, from linguistic, psychological, legal, political, and social perspectives. For instance: word histories fit into an overall investigation of language change over hundreds or thousands of years; children's cognitive development includes, prominently, learning many thousands of words in their native language(s); using words effectively is a major part of a lawyer's professional activity; lexicographers decide what words to put in a dictionary and how they are to be defined; linguists who specialize in semantics consider word meanings in particular contexts or no contexts; members of the language police want to force everyone to use words in a prescribed way; teenage slang involves new words that non-teenagers often find mysterious; and finally, linguists study the structure of words and the ways in which words are put together into sentences.

Course Requirements:

Grading will be based on (1) participation in class discussions, including at least one presentation in class (30% of the grade); (2) three short research papers (2-4 pages each) (50%); and (3) one in-class examination (20%).

Intended Audience:

No previous background in linguistics is assumed for the class.

LING 114 - A World of Words
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
MW 10:00AM - 11:30AM
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