Courses in Language Sciences


  • Study language from a scientific approach

  • Understand language change

  • Practice methods in linguistic analysis

  • Learn about language structure

  • Introduction to phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, and historical linguistics

ENGL 1504: Introduction to Linguistics

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Charlene Eska


ENGL 1514: Language and Society

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Katie Carmichael

  • Study social patterns of language variation

  • Look at language and region, social class, ethnicity, gender, and style

  • Learn features of different dialects

  • Critical assessment of social evaluations of dialects

  • Focus on American English


ENGL/PSYC 1524: Language and the Mind

Next taught:

  • Study how humans acquire, use, understand, and produce language

  • How do listeners categorize sounds, parse sentences, and access meaning

  • What do brain damage and speech errors can tell us about language

  • Engage in current debates about neo-Wharfianism and the bilingual advantage.


ENGL 2034: Analyzing the Sounds of Language

Next taught: 

  • Examination of the acoustic attributes of vowels and consonants.

  • Learn how to describe and measure pronunciation differences!

  • Basic introduction to using computational software for data processing and visualization.


SPAN 2774: Minority Languages in the Spanish-Speaking Context

Next taught:

  • Examine language policies and practices with regard to minority languages across the Spanish-speaking world

  • Explore issues concerning linguistic rights, such as access to education, economic opportunities, and political status

  • Analyze the implications of restrictions on minority groups' linguistic rights

  • Discuss why some minority-language speakers have been more successful in their language conservation or revitalization efforts than others

  • Taught in English; no knowledge of Spanish needed


ENGL/WGS 3134: Gender in Language

Next taught:

  • Exploration of differences — real and imagined — in the speech of men and women.

  • Examination of how language can reflect and reinforce gender inequality.

  • Linguistic phenomena covered: pitch, vocabulary, sound change, language ideologies, and discourse strategies and types.

  • Heavy focus on writing and research


ENGL/RLCL/SOC 3144: Language and Ethnicity in the United States

Next taught:

  • Study how racial and ethnic identity are expressed through the use of particular dialects or languages.

  • Investigate how language is related to issues of equality, social opportunity, and discrimination.

  • Topics include linguistic profiling, ethnic identity, and the role of languages other than English spoken in the U.S.


HUM/RLCL/COMM 3204: Multicultural Communication

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Komal Dillon

  • Exploration of communication in various cultural groups through the medium of performance.

  • Emphasis on understanding cultural differences and similarities in styles of communication, aesthetics, worldviews, and values.


ENGL/AINS 3304: The Languages of Native America

Next taught:

  • Introduction to the study of the indigenous languages of North America.

  • How is information coded into these languages?

  • Relationships between different indigenous languages of America

  • How is language used in aboriginal societies?

  • The maintenance and preservation of indigenous languages.


SPAN 3494: Introduction to Hispanic Linguistics

Next taught: 

  • Examine linguistic properties of Spanish (e.g., phonetics/phonology, morphology, syntax, pragmatics)

  • Explore the relationship between the Spanish language and cultural practices

  • Connect issues in linguistics to second-language learning

  • Apply knowledge of linguistics to hands-on activities

  • Prerequisite: SPAN 3304


SPAN 3544: Spanish Phonetics and Phonolgy

Next taught: 

  • Examine articulatory descriptions of Spanish vowels and consonants

  • Transcribe speech using the International Phonetic Alphabet

  • Compare the sound systems of Spanish and English

  • Explore phonetic variation that exists throughout the Spanish-speaking world

  • Prerequisite: SPAN 3304


ENGL 4004: Linguistic Discourse Analysis

Next taught: 

  • Learn how to apply tools of linguistic analysis to texts and spoken interactions.

  • Explore multiple approaches to studying spoken and written discourse, including conversation analysis, critical discourse analysis, ethnography of communication, and interactional sociolinguistics.

  • Understand how speakers organize discourse and create meaning through interaction.

  • Receive training in broad and close transcription methods, identifying linguistic categories that apply at the discourse level, and recognizing the stylistic and linguistic differences between genres of talk.


NEUR 4044: Neuroscience Senior Seminar

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Mike Bowers.

Topic changes. Previous topics include:

Language and Communication Disorders.


ENGL 4054: History of the English Language

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Charlene Eska

  • Investigate the development of the English language from its roots

  • Study the Indo-European language family through Old, Middle, and Early Modern English to contemporary dialects

  • Principles of language change will be studied in some depth and applied to English

  • Considerable class time will be devoted to doing historical analysis on linguistic data.


ENGL 4074: English Syntax

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Abby Walker

  • Investigate how syntax works with special attention to Modern English

  • Use the approach of generative linguistics

  • Subjects such as types of words, phrases, and clauses will be studied

  • How sentences can be structured for informational and pragmatic purposes

  • Considerable class time will be devoted to working with language data.


ENGL 4084: Research in the Language Sciences

  • Language Sciences Minor Capstone course

  • Complete your own research project


SPAN 4114: Topics in Spanish Linguistics

Next taught: 

  • Explore a range of topics in Hispanic Linguistics (e.g. sociolinguistics, second-language acquisition, pragmatics, syntax, phonetics, phonology)

  • Fall 2017 topic: Bilingualism in the Spanish-Speaking World

  • Prerequisite: SPAN 3494 or SPAN 3544


PSYC 4134: Language Development

Next taught:

  • Learn about the acquisition of language during infancy and early toddlerhood

  • Concentration on the perception of language-relevant sounds and the production of effective communication

  • We will also cover topics having to do with variability in language learning as a function of culture, hearing status, and clinical impairment.


ENGL 4144: Phonology

Next taught:

  • Examine the systematic organization of sounds in human languages based upon problem-based learning.

  • Analyse syllables and morae, articulatory features, timing of articulatory gestures, and phonological processes that lead to sound change.

  • Assessment of various theoretical and computational approaches to phonology including Articulatory Phonology, Prosodic Phonology, and Optimality Theory.


GER 4334: Special Topics in German Life, Literature, and Language

Topic changes. 


PSYC 4364: Bilingualism & Development

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Vanessa Diaz

  • What is language acquisition like in bilingual children?

  • What factors promote successful language development in bilinguals?

  • What are the positive cognitive effects of bilingualism beyond language?

  • What is it like to be a bilingual adult?

Senior Seminar for Psychology majors.


ENGL 4974: Independent Study

If you are interested in conducting an independent research study, contact one of our faculty!

(may be a different number in different departments).


ENGL 5064: Topics in Linguistics

Next taught: Spring 2019 with Abby Walker

Spring 2019: Codeswitching

Previous topics:

Proper English: The history and implications of Standard English

Language and Place