Spring 2011

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Linguistics courses
Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

CAS LX 250

Introduction to Linguistics

A1 Neidle TR 11-12:30 LSE B01
S1 Bang F 9-10 GCB 201
S2 Laidman F 10-11 GCB 201
S3 Bang F 11-12 GCB 201
S4 Laidman F 12-1 GCB 201
S5 Laidman F 1-2 GCB 201
S6 Bang F 2-3 GCB 201
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]
  • Students signing up for CAS LX 250 A1 should also sign up for one of the Friday discussion sections.
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.
  • This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas:
    • Scientific Inquiry I
    • Global Citizenship and Intercultural Literacy
    • Critical Thinking

CAS LX 501

Linguistic Field Methods

web A1 M.C. O'Connor TR 9:30-11 KCB 201
An in-depth investigation of the phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and lexicon of an African or other non-Indo-European language. Weekly sessions with language consultant. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]

CAS LX 502

Semantics I

web A1 Alrenga MWF 2-3 CAS 314
B1 Hagstrom MWF 2-3 STO 143
Semantics is the study of linguistic meaning. In this course, we will examine meaning from a variety of perspectives, including: how it is encoded in words and sentences, how native speakers interpret language, and how truth and falsehood can emerge from the complexity of the grammar. We will also touch on various aspects of pragmatics - the function of meaning in a communicative setting. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 521


web A1 Baronian MWF 12-1 KCB 107
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.]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 525


web A1 Barnes TR 11-12:30 KCB 102
Exploration of the melodic and rhythmic aspects of the languages of the world. Emphasis on theoretical and experimental approaches to cross-linguistic typology. Specific topics include: syllables and syllable-weight, rhythm and speech timing; stress and metrics; tone and intonation. [Prereq: CAS LX 510 Phonetics or consent of instructor.]

CAS LX 535

Historical and Comparative Linguistics

web A1 Barnes TR 2-3:30 KCB 107
Introduction to language change and the methodology of historical linguistic analysis, using data from a wide array of languages. Investigates genetic relatedness among languages, language comparison, historical reconstruction, and patterns and principles of change in phonology, morphology, syntax, and semantics. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 540

Acquisition of Syntax

web A1 Hagstrom TR 12:30-2 KCB 104
A general introduction to the study of first and second language acquisition within the framework of generative grammar, focused on the development of syntax. Topics include: the development of syntactic structure, verb movement, finiteness, null subjects, binding, and questions. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
Related courses at BU
Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

CAS AN 524

Seminar: Language and Culture Contacts in Contemporary Africa

A1 Ngom MWF 2-3 KCB 102
Concepts and theoretical approaches to study language variation and change in sociolinguistics/linguistic anthropology. This course examines internal and external factors that trigger language variations and changes and the social attitudes associated with them. The nexus between diachronic and synchronic changes will also be reanalyzed in light of the Labovian variationist model. While the course will focus on language variations and changes in Africa, it will draw from existing literature to provide students with a strong foundation on the scholarship in the field of contact linguistics, language variation and change, types of variations, the relationships between these variations and gender, ethnicity, religion, youth culture, and globalization. It will conclude by introducing students to the new field of forensic linguistics (the interface between language, crime and law). Using actual cases from the US and Europe, the use of linguistic features as evidence in criminal investigations, in authorship disputes, and in asylum cases will be examined. The course will consist of lectures and class discussions, practical exercises dealing with issues on language variation and change and their various implications in the 21st century. The course will provide students with the tools necessary to plan and execute studies on language variation and change in the world's speech communities. [Prereq: CAS AN 351 or consent of instructor]

CAS AR 208

Lost Languages and Decipherments

A1 Danti TR 2-3:30 CAS 316
An overview of the archaeology of writing focusing on modern decipherments of ancient texts. Related topics include characteristics of the world's major language families, the nature of linguistic change, and the origin and history of the alphabet.

CAS EN 518

Linguistic Problems in TESOL

A1 Zlateva MWF 9-10 CAS B06B
Application of linguistic concepts to the teaching of English as a foreign language. Includes description of contemporary English grammatical structures that pose problems for learners and teachers. [Prereq: consent of instructor.]

CAS LF 504

History of the French Language

web A1 Baronian MWF 10-11 KCB 201
(Conducted in French) Prosodic, phonetic, and morphosyntactic changes from Classical Latin to Modern French, highlighting the common roots between French and other Romance languages. Lexical influences (Gaulish, Frankish, etc.). Comparative linguistic study of texts in Old or Middle French. Sociopolitical events in the history of the French language. Standardization, linguistic unification of France after the Revolution, and the worldwide spread of the language.

Changements prosodiques, phonétiques, et morphosyntaxiques du latin classique au français moderne, mettant en relief les racines communes qui unissent le français aux autres langues romanes. Influences lexicales (gaulois, francique, etc.). Comparaison linguistique de textes en ancien ou moyen français. Evénements sociopolitiques dans l'histoire de la langue. Standardisation, unification linguistique de la France après la Révolution, et diffusion du français dans le monde.
[Prereq: CAS LF 303 and CAS LX 250 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.]

CAS LS 504

History of the Spanish Language

A1 Zaderenko MWF 12-1 CAS 233
(Conducted in Spanish) Study of the structure of sounds, general concepts of language change, and specific phonological, morphological and syntactic changes in the history of Spanish. Begins with the modern language and proceeds to successively earlier stages; includes reading of representative medieval and dialectal texts. [Prereq: CAS LS 350 plus two CAS LS 400-level literature courses]
  • This course can satisfy requirements for both the Spanish and the Spanish & Linguistics majors; it can also satisfy the Linguistics major requirement for a course in the linguistic analysis of a specific language, as well as counting toward both the Spanish and Linguistics minors. See http://www.bu.edu/linguistics/UG/spanling.html for further details.

CAS PH 160

Reasoning and Argumentation

A1 Webb MWF 12-1 CAS 211
B1 Liebesman TR 12:30-2 CAS 313
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.

CAS PH 360


A1 Floyd TR 11-12:30 CAS 324
Study of the basics of modern logic, including propositional logic, quantifiers, identity and functions, completeness and incompleteness. A special emphasis is placed on strategies of deductive reasoning. [Prereq: one philosophy course or sophomore standing.]
[Meets with GRS PH 633]

SAR SH 505

Introduction to Phonological Disorders

A1 Strand TR 8-9:30 SAR 104
This course provides an overview of current models of normal and disordered phonological development. Students examine and practice evidenced-based principles and practical applications of assessment, analysis, diagnosis, and remediation approaches and procedures to facilitate critical thinking and problem-solving abilities to apply to working with individuals with a variety of phonological disorders. [Prereq: SAR SH 521 and SH 524 ]

SED DE 672

Structure of American Sign Language

A1 Perry T 4-7 PSY B40
Structural linguistic study of specific aspects of phonology, morphology, syntax, and lexicology in ASL. Concepts of language variation, dialect, creolization, and bilingualism. [Prereq: SED LS 560 or CAS LX 250.]