Spring 2016

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Linguistics courses
Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

CAS LX 250

Introduction to Linguistics

web A1 Chang TR 11-12:30 LSE B01
S1 Dickinson F 9-10 CAS 225
S2 Dickinson F 10-11 STH 317
S3 Scott F 11-12 COM 210
S4 Robinson F 9-10 CAS 324
S5 Scott F 1-2 KCB 201
S6 Scott F 2-3 KCB 201
S8 Robinson F 11-12 SED 208
S9 Dickinson F 1-2 KCB 103
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 406

The Linguistics of Contemporary English

web A1 Alrenga TR 9:30-11 KCB 103
Systematic introduction to the linguistic analysis of modern English (phonology, morphology, syntax) from the perspective of generative grammar. Other topics include: English and its West Germanic relatives, non-standard varieties and the development of standard English, varieties of World Englishes. [Note that this will count as a course in the linguistic analysis of a specific language for purposes of satisfying requirements for the Linguistics major.] Also offered as CAS EN 514. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]

CAS LX 500

Topics in Linguistics: Crosslinguistic Perspectives on Language Acquisition

web A1 Hagstrom TR 2-3:30 SOC B65
Exploration, within the framework of generative grammar, of how similarities and differences in the acquisition patterns of syntax, semantics, and morphology across typologically diverse languages provide key evidence about the essential nature of first and second language acquisition. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 or consent of instructor]

CAS LX 501

Linguistic Field Methods

web A1 Myler MWF 9-10 COM 212
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 TR 12:30-2 CAS 322
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 510


web A1 Barnes MWF 11-12 CAS 116
Introduction to phonetic and phonological theory at an elementary level. Transcription and production of sounds, International Phonetic Alphabet, the anatomy and physiology of speech, speech acoustics, phonological rules, analysis of data from a variety of languages. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 521


web A1 Myler MWF 12-1 CAS 116
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 522

Syntax I

web A1 Hagstrom TR 3:30-5 CAS 116
Introduction to the logical structure and organization of language, and to generative theory. Application of principles of syntactic analysis to students' own and other languages through data-oriented problems from different language types. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.

CAS LX 525


web A1 Barnes MWF 2-3 CAS 214
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 545


web A1 Chang TR 2-3:30 CAS 324
The psycholinguistics and sociolinguistics of life with two languages. Topics include bilingual language use, processing, acquisition, organization; effects of bilingualism on cognition and development; the bilingual brain; the bilingual speech community; bilingual education; bilingualism in the media and public eye. [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 1-2 PLS 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 EN 514

Topics: The Linguistics of Contemporary English

web A1 Alrenga TR 9:30-11 KCB 103
[see CAS LX 406] [Prereq: CAS LX 250]

CAS EN 516

History of the English Language II

A1 Appleford TR 11-12:30 SED 212
Everyone who uses English has reason to wonder about its idiosyncrasies and its history. How can words with such different spellings as “eight” and “ate” be pronounced alike? Why do we say “a twenty foot” pole, rather than “twenty feet”? And why is it “feet” rather than “foots”? What did Shakespeare’s spoken language sound like? What happened to the word “thou”? What is an Anglo-Saxon rune (∑∏∑) and how do you read it? This course will address everyone’s curiosity about these and other features of the English language through analysis of medieval and early modern literary texts, noting especially changes in pronunciation, syntax, spelling, and vocabulary. We will also explore the pre- and early print culture of England, locating these early forms of English in relation to the material forms onto and into which they were written; students will learn to read and analyze not only handwritten scrolls, manuscripts and early printed books but also other media including sword belts, jewels, illuminated manuscripts, goblets, stone cross monuments, pregnancy girdles, barrow tombs and king’s coffins. We will also give some thought to constructed and fictional languages that draw on medieval British languages, such as JRR Tolkien’s Orkish, Elvish, and Mannish. No previous knowledge of linguistics or medieval literature required. Fulfills English major Pre-1800 Literature requirement.

CAS EN 518

Linguistic Problems in TESOL

A1 Zlateva M 12-3 PSY B55
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 503

The Structure of French: Phonology

web A1 Neidle MWF 10-11 KCB 104
(Conducted in French) The sound system of standard French, with exploration of dialect variation in France, Canada, and other Francophone regions of the world. Questions about mental representation of linguistic information, processes of word formation, and language variation and change. Students discover linguistic regularities through frequent problem sets.
  • Learn how different sounds are produced, and how they fit into the overall phonological system of the French language.
  • Discover ways in which your own pronunciation of French may deviate from that of native speakers, to improve your pronunciation.
  • Explore the kinds of phonological changes have occurred in the evolution of French, as well as the kinds of phonological differences that account for dialectal variations.
  • Reflect upon questions concerning the mental representation of linguistic information, and formulate and evaluate arguments in favor of specific hypotheses.
[Prereq: CAS LF 303 and CAS LX 250 or equivalent, or permission of instructor. Note: CAS LX 250 can be taken concurrently.]
See testimonials.

CAS LG 315

Introduction to German Linguistics

A1 Waters TR 2-3:30 STH 636
(Conducted in English) Introduction to major subfields of German linguistics: phonetics/phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, historical linguistics, regional variation, and sociolinguistic aspects such as gender and English influence. Includes familiarization with Middle High German. Course also aims to improve students’ German pronunciation and awareness of grammar. [Prereq: CAS LG 211 or equivalent proficiency]

CAS PH 160

Reasoning and Argumentation

A1 Webb MWF 9-10 CAS 211
B1 Anderson TR 3:30-5 CAS B12
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 203
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 am SAR 300
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 ]

SAR SH 524

Language Acquisition

A1 Hughes TR 9:30-11 SAR 102
This course will focus on first language acquisition in infancy and childhood. We will cover the progression of language development in each of the traditional areas of linguistic analysis: phonology, semantics, syntax, and pragmatics. The course will be focused on experimental research in typical language acquisition and on different theories that strive to explain the underlying cognitive and linguistic mechanisms at work in an early learner.

SED DE 672

Structure of American Sign Language

A1 Caselli M 4-7 CAS 203
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.]