Spring 2020 (tentative)

→ Full list of Linguistics course offerings

Jump to semester:
Spring 2019
(Fall 2019)
(Spring 2020)

Jump to section:
Linguistics courses
Related courses at BU

Show descriptions

Hide descriptions

Linguistics courses
Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

GRS LX 631

Semantics & Pragmatics: Introduction to Linguistic Meaning

A1 Coppock TR 12:30-1:45 TBA
Systematic examination of how meaning is encoded in words and sentences, and how it can emerge from the complexity of the grammar. This course also touches on various aspects of pragmatics—the study of how meaning is shaped by context. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.
Please note that this course cannot be taken for credit towards the MA or PhD program in Linguistics.]
[Meets with CAS LX 331; Previously offered as CAS LX 502 "Semantics I"]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.
  • This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas:
    • The Individual in Community
    • Global Citizenship and Intercultural Literacy
    • Critical Thinking

GRS LX 641


A1 Ngom MWF 9:05-9:55 TBA
Sociolinguistics, broadly construed, is the investigation of relations between linguistic phenomena and human social life. This course covers several recent theoretical approaches to the study of language and society: variational sociolinguistics, ethnography of communication, and international sociolinguistics. Also covered are development of pidgins and creoles, multilingualism, language choice, and other aspects of language and culture. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or AN 351 Language, Culture, and Society; or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with CAS LX 341; Also offered as CAS AN 521]

GRS LX 646

Language Variation and Change

A1 Erker MWF 12:20-1:10 TBA
Why do languages change over time? Who leads and who follows in situations of language change? The course answers these questions by examining the link between language change and linguistic variation, focusing on how synchronic variation leads to diachronic change. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Language or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with CAS LX 346]
  • Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.
  • This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas:
    • Social Inquiry I
    • Teamwork/Collaboration I

GRS LX 665

Variation in Dialects of English

A1 Myler TR 9:30-10:45 TBA
This course explores how dialects of English differ from each other, focusing on grammatical variation in the US, with occasional forays into British dialects. The class will examine grammatical diversity on a number of levels (including accents, dialectal vocabulary, and social factors in language variation), but the main focus will be on studying and accounting for morphosyntactic differences amongst varieties. Students come to appreciate how linguists investigate grammatical diversity scientifically, revealing the complex structure of non-standard dialects. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with CAS LX 365; Also offered as CAS EN 313; Previously offered as CAS LX 530 "Variation in Dialects of English"]

GRS LX 691

Linguistic Field Methods

A1 Barnes TR 11-12:15 TBA
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.]
[Meets with CAS LX 391; Previously offered as CAS LX 501 "Linguistic Field Methods"]

GRS LX 703

Phonological Analysis

A1 Lindsey MWF 1:25-2:15 TBA
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 CAS LX 403; Previously offered as CAS LX 513 "Phonology"]

GRS LX 722

Intermediate Syntax: Modeling Syntactic Knowledge

A1 Hagstrom TR 2-3:15 TBA
Using linguistic data drawn from a wide variety of languages, students develop a precise model of syntactic knowledge through evaluation of hypotheses and arguments. Exploration of major discoveries and phenomena from the linguistic literature. [Prereq: CAS LX 321 / GRS LX 621 Syntax: Introduction to Sentential Structure (or CAS LX 522) or consent of instructor.]
[Meets with CAS LX 422]

GRS LX 736

Advanced Topics in Semantics and Pragmatics: Perspective and Representation

A1 Coppock M 3:30-6:15 TBA
Exploration of how natural languages encode perspective. Phenomena include indexicals (e.g. “I”), expressives (e.g. “damn”), evidentials (e.g. Cheyenne’s reportative marker), shifted indexicals in e.g. Amharic, logophors (e.g. Chinese "ziji"), egophors (e.g. Newari conjunct-marking), and predicates of personal taste (e.g. “tasty”). [Prereq: CAS LX 432/ GRS LX 732 Intermediate Semantics or equivalent (or permission of the instructor)]

GRS LX 795

Quantitative Methods in Linguistics

A1 Erker MWF 10:10-11 TBA
Introduces students to quantitative approaches to linguistic data, including visualization, hypothesis testing, and data modeling. Students will gain proficiency in R, an open-source statistical environment, and learn the logic behind statistical techniques, as well as practical skills for using them. [Prereq: Graduate standing in the Linguistics program, or consent of instructor]

GRS LX 796

Computational Linguistics

A1 Hagstrom
T 3:30-6:15 TBA
Introduction to computational techniques to explore linguistic models and test empirical claims. Serves as an introduction to concepts, algorithms, data structures, and tool libraries. Topics include tagging and classification, parsing models, meaning representation, corpus creation, information extraction. [Prereq: Prereq: CAS LX 250 and CAS CS 112, or consent of instructor]
[Meets with CAS LX 496]
Students who have already taken CAS LX 394/GRS LX 694 are not eligible to take this course.
  • Carries divisional credit for Math and Computer Science in CAS. Note, however, that courses taken toward a major or minor in Linguistics (Humanities) cannot be used for credit toward the Divisional Studies Requirement in a different division.
  • This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas:
    • Quantitative Reasoning II
    • Research & Information Literacy

GRS LX 802

Seminar in Linguistic Research

A1 Barnes R 3:30-4:45 TBA
Advanced graduate students working on their qualifying research papers or thesis present and discuss work in progress. The course is organized thematically based on students' research areas. Readings each week are determined on the basis of the research discussed. 2 cr. per semester.
Related courses at BU
Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room