You are here: Home / Graduate / Courses / Linguistics / Past offerings

Fall 2015

SPAN 597C

Field Methods (3) This course will present methods and techniques for field research in linguistics, including ethnographic/anthropological, sociolingistic, and psycholinguistic approaches. Among the topics to be presented are interview techniques, software and hardware for field settings, adapting laboratory methods to varying linguistic ecologies, interpretation of data, and interfacing with other empirical approaches to the study of language. 


Spring 2015

SPAN 596A 

Spanish Mood Variation (3) The goal is to conduct a review of treatments of the Spanish Subjunctive in Grammars spanning the 15th-20th centuries modeled on Poplack et al. (top appear), and to conduct a variationist analysis of a Mexican Spanish speech corpus. 

SPAN 596B 

Variable Use of the Spanish Subjunctive (4) The goal is to conduct a review of treatments of the Spanish subjunctive and grammars spanning the 15th to 20th centuries modeled on Poplack et al. (to appear), and to conduct a variationist analysis of Peninsular Spanish Speech Corpus. 

SPAN 596C 

Language Science (3) Methods and research in language science. 

SPAN 597A 

Language Acquisition and Variation (3) This course focuses on acquisition of variable input with the goal of understanding how children acquire language. 

SPAN 597C (LING 597C) 

Methods in Language Contact Research (3) This course will explore a variety of approaches to the study of language contact, with special emphasis on naturalistic data from bilingual speech communities. 

empirical approaches to the study of language. 


Spring 2017

SPAN 597 

Statistics for Language Scientists (3) The primary goal in this course will be to introduce a range of quantitative techniques used in language science. By the end of the course you should be able to apply these techniques for visualizing and analyzing your own data as well as for evaluating results reported in the literature. The scope of the course encompasses techniques for exploring data, basic hypothesis testing, regression, ANOVA, categorical data analysis, and mixed effects regression. Time permitting we will also explore topics in Bayesian inference. A secondary goal is to learn to conduct these analyses and data manipulation using the open source programming language R.

But statistics, and science, never sits still. Therefore, alongside our practical goals, we will aim for the, arguably more important, goal of learning to think about quantitative data. This includes a critical view of quantitative research in general, questions of measurement, the many decisions involved in model structure and interpretation, the use of alternative methods, and enhancing your ability to extend your knowledge to new techniques independently.

SPAN 597

The psycholinguistic study of code-switching (3) This seminar will provide an in-depth examination of codeswitching, with both historical grounding and a review of contemporary codeswitching work from corpus-based and lab-based perspectives. To begin the course, we will provide a historical overview, focusing on seminal papers in the field, so that students have an understanding of how syntactic constraint-based approaches to codeswitching arose in the literature, in large measure as a means of establishing that codeswitched language was not “a-lingual.” As we explore the issue of constraint-based approaches, we will also carefully examine methodological issues, focusing in particular on the limitations of the data and data collection paradigms that have constituted the basis for the theoretical claims made in the literature. In the next phase of the course we will focus on more recent approaches to codeswitching from a production and processing perspective. Throughout the course, we will attempt to evaluate psycholinguistic research in light of more linguistically informed approaches to the complex array of issues arising in codeswitching.

LING 597 

Code-switching in the lab and in the community (3) The primary goal in this course will be to explore a range of quantitative techniques common in language science, for analyzing continuous and categorical data. By the end of the course you should be able to apply these techniques for visualizing and analyzing your own data as well as for evaluating results reported in the literature. The scope of the course encompasses techniques for exploring data, basic hypothesis testing, regression, ANOVA, categorical data analysis, and mixed effects regression.


Spring 2018

SPAN 597 

Fitting languages together: Theoretical approaches to multilingualism (3) How do you fit two or more languages into one mind? Do bilinguals have two language systems, or just one (or is this a sensible question to ask)? How is multilinguals’ knowledge of language different from that of monolinguals? In this course we will explore a variety of approaches to understanding the nature of multilinguals’ linguistic knowledge and use, relying on a variety of theoretical traditions, sources of data, and multilingual phenomena including second language acquisition, code-switching, language contact, and language processing. We will aim for a synthesis that will help chart a way forward in understanding the way most of the world experiences language—two or more at a time!

SPAN/LING 597 

Contact-induced languages (3) Historical linguistics strives to reconstruct earlier stages of languages, but it is seldom possible to arrive at the “first” form of a language, because past a certain time depth no reliable conclusions can be extrapolated. Under special situations of language contact, however, “new” languages emerge, including pidgins, creoles, anti-creoles, and intertwined languages. This course will examine issues such as: How are contact-induced languages formed? What are the similarities and differences (if any) between these “new” languages and “natural” languages? In contact-induced languages what are the relative contributions of the input languages, linguistic and cognitive universals, and spontaneous emergent traits? What are the characteristics of bilingualism involving a contact-induced language and one or more of its lexifier languages, and how can data from such environments contribute to a broader understanding of bilingualism? What are some viable possibilities for conducting research on contact-induced languages?

SPAN 510 

Romance Phonology (3) 

SPAN 509 

Functional Syntax (3) The objectives of this course are for students to (1) become acquainted with the study of grammatical forms together with their functions, (2) sample approaches in this area (usage-based theory, discourse-based syntax, typology, grammaticalization, construction grammar), and (3) learn skills for carrying out a quantitative syntactic analysis of natural speech data, and developing corresponding argumentation.