GERMAN 517 - Principles and Methods of Historical Linguistics
Fall 2020, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is   Hybrid (see other Sections below)
Subject: German (GERMAN)
Department: LSA Germanic Languages & Literatures


Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Graduate standing, or permission of instructor.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:


This course is an introduction to the theories and methods that enable linguists to describe and explain processes of linguistic change and historical relationships among languages. The major topics to be covered are the emergence of language families and means of establishing family relationships; sound change; grammatical change, especially analogy; language change caused by culture contacts; the Comparative Method, through which prehistoric language states can be reconstructed with an impressive degree of accuracy; internal reconstruction, a less powerful but still important method for gaining information about linguistic prehistory; and ways in which the study of current dialect variation offers insights into processes of change.

Course Requirements:

Regular homework assignments (45%), Final exam (45%), Class participation (10%)

Class Format:

Instruction Mode
This is an MC (Hybrid due to COVID) course with lecture and discussion/research components. The lecture component, including group discussions, will be held online and students should attend synchronously. The discussion/research component will be held in-person, in one-on-one meetings with the instructor, every other week. Exceptions to the in-person component will be considered for students needing to attend online only on a case-by-case basis by consent of the instructor. Students who receive consent from the instructor to participate completely online will enroll in the DC (Distance due to COVID) section (section 002) of the course.

Learning Mode
The lecture component for this course will be conducted synchronously during the times listed via Zoom or BlueJeans.

Synchronous Expectations
During the remote lectures, students will be expected to be virtually present at the listed class times. Students who miss a live lecture due to technical issues, illness, or other, will be able to access missed content via recording.


GERMAN 517 - Principles and Methods of Historical Linguistics
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
MW 11:30AM - 1:00PM
002 (LEC)
MW 11:30AM - 1:00PM

Textbooks/Other Materials

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