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Linguistics: Implications for Teachers

The purpose of this course is to present the theoretical foundations of language and its implications for the classroom. It is an introduction to the systematic study of language and the way language works. The focus is on five basic linguistic areas: phonetics and phonology (sounds and sound patterning), morphology (form of words), syntax (arrangement of words), and semantics (meaning), with special emphasis on the English language, and pragmatics (the use of language). By breaking language into its components, the processes that take place in language acquisition and language learning will become clearer. Concrete examples will portray what linguists and children acquiring a language ("little" linguists) do, emphasizing the complexity, variety, and regularity of language. Other related linguistic areas (language universals, body language, and discourse analysis) will also be addressed. As part of this course, working as a linguist in the field will be required.