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Linguistics courses
Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

CAS LX 110

SAY WHAT ? Accents, Dialects, and Society

web A1 Myler TR 12:30-1:45 CAS B20
When people from different regions of the US and from various parts of the English-speaking world meet for the first time, they are immediately struck by differences in the way they speak. For speakers of so-called “non-standard” dialects, this can give rise to insecurity and frustration, and dialect prejudice may lead such speakers to suppress aspects of their native variety (an experience familiar to many American college students). But is there any objective reason to consider non-standard dialects as inferior? What are the implications of dialect diversity for education, civil rights, and other aspects of public policy? How are dialects and their speakers represented in literature, film, humor, music, and other aspects of popular culture? How exactly does English vary across different places and social groups? Where do these accents and dialects come from in the first place? This course, which assumes no previous background in linguistics, investigates these questions from both a linguistic and a more broadly humanistic perspective. [Prereq: None. Students who have already taken CAS LX 250 or any higher-level linguistics course (or are doing so concurrently) are not eligible to take CAS LX 110.]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 250

Introduction to Linguistics

web A1 Barnes TR 2-3:15 KCB 101
S1 Reffel F 9:05-9:55 CAS 310N
S2 Reffel F 10:10-11 CAS 114A
S3 Reffel F 11:15-12:05 CAS 114A
S5 Hanlin F 1:25-2:15 SED 208
S6 Hanlin F 2:30-3:20 SOC B61
S7 Hanlin F 11:15-12:05 KCB 103
S8 Clapp F 1:25-2:15 SED 206
S9 Clapp F 2:30-3:20 CAS 235
Study of the fundamental properties that all languages share, and of how languages differ, with respect to structure (sound system, word formation, syntax), expression of meaning, acquisition, variation, and change; cultural and artistic uses of languages; comparison of oral, written, and signed languages. [Prereq: none]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.
  • Students signing up for CAS LX 250 A1 should also sign up for one of the Friday discussion sections.

CAS LX 301

Phonetics & Phonology: Introduction to Sound Systems

web A1 Barnes TR 11-12:15 CAS 204A
Introduction to the nature and patterning of sounds in human language. Presents articulatory and acoustic phonetics, and basic phonological analysis, focusing on cross-language typology and comparison. Hands-on development of practical skills, including IPA transcription, field techniques, and digital speech analysis. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with GRS LX 601; Previously offered as CAS LX 510 "Phonetics"]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 311

Morphology: Introduction to the Structures and Shapes of Words

web A1 Myler TR 9:30-10:45 CAS 218
Morphology, the study of the internal structure and the shapes of words across languages, straddles the boundary between syntax and phonology. This course covers the major empirical and theoretical issues in the study of morphology, emphasizing links to other components of grammar. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with GRS LX 611; Previously offered as CAS LX 521 "Morphology"]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 321

Syntax: Introduction to Sentential Structure

web A1 Hagstrom TR 12:30-1:45 CAS 204A
Introduction to syntax as an object of inquiry. Students build an increasingly sophisticated model of syntactic knowledge to account for data from English and other languages, constructing and evaluating alternative hypotheses about how sentence structure works. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with GRS LX 621; Previously offered as CAS LX 522 "Syntax I"]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 355

Second Language Acquisition

web A1 Chang MWF 10:10-11 KCB 102
The goal of this course is to provide an overview of findings from the interdisciplinary field of second language acquisition (SLA), especially as they relate to differences between adult and child learners and individual variation among adult learners. The course examines data from many different language pairs, diverse theoretical perspectives on second-language attainment, and a wide range of factors influencing acquisition: language-universal, demographic, experiential, cognitive, social/affective, and environmental. The course also considers the case of third language acquisition as well as pedagogical implications. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with GRS LX 655; Previously offered as CAS LX 542 "Second Language Acquisition"]

CAS LX 372

French Phonetics

web A1 Neidle TR 9:30-10:45 KCB 103
(Conducted in French) Students improve their pronunciation and aural comprehension by applying linguistic principles governing the articulation and distribution of French sounds, liaison, "mute e," and intonation. Written exercises reinforce theoretical points; oral exercises and audio and video recordings allow focus on individual difficulties. Includes readings from literary texts.
[Prereq: vNote that CAS LX 250 can be taken concurrently.]
[Also offered as CAS LF 500]
Enrollment is limited, so that students can receive individual attention :-)

CAS LX 390

Topics in Linguistics: Natural Language Processing and Computational Linguistics

web A1 Hagstrom T 3:30-6:15 CAS 327
Introduction to computational techniques to explore linguistic models and test empirical claims. Serves as an introduction to programming, algorithms, and data structures, focused on modern applications to NLP. Topics include tagging and classification, parsing models, meaning representation, and information extraction. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 or consent of instructor]
[Meets with GRS LX 690; Previously offered as CAS LX 500 "Topics in Linguistics"]

CAS LX 403

Phonological Analysis

web A1 Chang MWF 12:20-1:10 CAS 218
Survey of phonological theory and analysis, with focus on crosslinguistic typology of phonological systems. Phonological reasoning and argumentation skills are developed. Empirical coverage includes contrast, distinctive features, rules and constraints, opacity, tone, syllabification, stress, and interactions with morphology and syntax. [Prereq: CAS LX 301/ GRS LX 601 (or CAS LX 510) or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with GRS LX 703; Previously offered as CAS LX 513 "Phonology"]

CAS LX 432

Intermediate Semantics: The Grammatical Construction of Meaning

web A1 Coppock MWF 3:35-4:25 CAS 233
Introduction to the semantics of natural language at an intermediate level. Topics include (but are not limited to) predication and quantification, scope and anaphora, problems of discourse analysis, various issues at the interface of semantics and pragmatics, and crosslinguistic semantics. [Prereq: CAS LX 331/ GRS LX 631 Semantics & Pragmatics: Introduction to Linguistic Meaning (or CAS LX 502) or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with GRS LX 732; Previously offered as CAS LX 503 "Semantics II"]
Related courses at BU
Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

CAS AN 351

Language, Culture, and Society

A1 Smith-Hefner MWF 11:15-12:05 CAS 216
Introduction to basic concepts, problems, and methods used by anthropologists in the investigation of relationships among language, culture, and society. Topics include language and conceptual systems, language and role, language and social context, and language and thought.

CAS LJ 410

The History of the Japanese Language

A1 Ishikawa MWF 3:35-4:25 CAS 114B
(Conducted in English) Overview of major issues in the history of Japanese: genetic relationships, changes in sound system, word and sentence structures, and pragmatics. Special attention to the process leading to the current writing system. Representative texts used to demonstrate different literary languages. [Prereq: CAS LJ 211.]

CAS PH 160

Reasoning and Argumentation

A1 Webb MWF 9:05-9:55 CAS 211
B1 Bokulich TR 11-11:15 CGS 511
A systematic study of the principles of both deductive and informal reasoning, calculated to enhance students' actual reasoning skills, with an emphasis on reasoning and argumentation in ordinary discourse.

SAR SH 523

Introduction to Speech Science

A1 Stepp MW 12:20-2:05 STH 318
Lecture, laboratory, and demonstrations. Introduction to the basic physics of sound, including the decibel scale, spectral analysis, and sound resonance. Acoustic theory of speech production. Effects of contact on speech acoustics. Suprasegmental characteristics of speech production. Introduction to speech perception. [Prereq: SAR SH 521]

SAR SH 531

Introduction to Communication Disorders

A1 Constantino TR 2-3:15 CAS B25B
Introduction to various speech and language disorders found across linguistically and culturally diverse populations. Characteristics underlying biological systems and methods for evaluation and treating a variety or communication disorders are examined. Exploration of the professions of speech pathology and audiology