BA Linguistics / Course details

Year of entry: 2020

Course unit details:
Spanish Linguistics

Unit code SPLA20772
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Offered by Spanish, Portuguese and Latin
Available as a free choice unit? Yes

Overview

This course unit covers the fundamentals of Spanish linguistics, with special attention being paid to the sounds, the words and the sentences of Spanish. Relevant comparisons with English are made when appropriate. Dialectal variation as well as the implications of linguistic analysis for the teaching and learning of second languages are also discussed.

Aims

  • To introduce students to the linguistic study of Spanish.
  • To provide students with the basic linguistic tools necessary to describe and analyse linguistic data.
  • To engage students in the analysis of real-world linguistic data.
  • To allow students to establish a connection between theoretical research and pedagogical practice in the language classroom.
  • To enable students to use their knowledge of linguistics to facilitate the process of teaching and learning a language, with special attention to Spanish.
  • To help raise awareness of intra- and inter-language diversity and multilingualism in a global world.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course students will be able to:

(see below for outcomes arranged into knowledge and understanding; intellectual skills; practical skills; and peripheral/transferrable skills)

Syllabus

Week 1

 

Course introduction – Debunking some myths about language; the study of Human Language

 

Week 2

 

The study of Human Language; linguistic tools; basic concepts

 

Week 3

 

The sounds of Spanish I

 

Week 4

 

The sounds of Spanish II

 

Week 5

 

The sounds of Spanish III                                                                                        [Submit Assignment I]

 

Week 6

 

The words of Spanish I

 

Week 7

 

The words of Spanish II                                                                                          [Submit Assignment II]

 

Week 8

 

The sentences of Spanish I

 

Week 9

 

The sentences of Spanish II

 

Week 10

 

The sentences of Spanish III                                                                                 [Submit Assignment III]

 

Week 11

 

Review and practice for the exam

Teaching and learning methods

Theoretical-practical lectures

Seminars

Group assignments

Readings provided in .pdf format on Blackboard

Blackboard

Office hours

Knowledge and understanding

By the end of the semester, you will have:

  • assimilated basic concepts in modern linguistics;
  • acquired the knowledge of the linguistic features of Spanish and the tools necessary to describe and analyse the structure of the Spanish language in terms of its sounds, its words and its sentences, as well as compare the structure of Spanish with that of English;
  • developed critical awareness with regard to the weight of the arguments provided by research to date, as well as the scope and limitations of the different proposals in the field;
  • acquired a foundation that can be applied to related fields such as the teaching and learning of second languages, translation and interpreting and the formal analysis of literary and non-literary texts.

Intellectual skills

The successful completion of this unit will enable you to develop:

  • analytical skills and the ability to deal with abstract concepts;
  • the ability to empirically test abstract ideas in linguistics;
  • argumentation skills;
  • problem-posing and problem-solving skills;
  • the ability to obtain, analyse and organise additional information about relevant topics;
  • critical awareness;
  • creativity and originality of thinking.

Practical skills

By completing this course unit, you will:

  • be able to analyse Spanish data on three different levels (sounds, words and sentences), which will be accomplished via the completion of a number of regular practical assignments;
  • establish relevant comparisons with English, thus improving your knowledge of the structure of English;
  • improve the teaching and learning of foreign/second languages by becoming more linguistically informed.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

This unit will enable you to acquire and/or further develop:

  • information-retrieval skills, including the ability to obtain additional information about relevant topics;
  • the ability to apply analytical skills to everyday problems;
  • oral and written presentation skills;
  • independent research skills (library, electronic databases, internet materials, language samples);
  • the ability to synthesise information;
  • argumentation skills;
  • critical awareness;
  • awareness of linguistic diversity in a global world.

Employability skills

Other

Assessment methods

Assessment task

Length

Weighting within unit

Final exam

Three written group assignments

2 hours

N/A (total: 3,000 words; 1,000 each)

70%

30% (10% each)

 

Feedback methods

 

  • Formative feedback during seminars in class regarding the relevance and coherence of students’ responses/participation in discussion.
  • Formative and summative feedback for group assignments aimed at helping students’ monitor their own progress and foster a guided learning process through theoretical-practical lectures and seminars with structured and supported peer-led learning.
  • Office hours and email consultation throughout the semester.
  • Meetings during office hours to discuss the final paper throughout the semester; annotated paper outline/draft.

 

Recommended reading

 

General

Alvar, M. 2000. Introducción a la lingüística española. Barcelona: Editorial Ariel.

Azevedo, M. 2005. Introducción a la lingüística española. New Jersey: Pearson.

Crain, S., y D. Lillo-Martin. 1999. An Introduction to Linguistic Theory and Language Acquisition. Oxford: Blackwell.

Hualde, J.I., Escobar, A. Olarrea, A. and Travis, C. 2010. Introducción a la lingüística hispánica. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Hulst, H. van der. 2008. A Mind for Language. Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall Hunt.

Pountain, C. 2003. Exploring the Spanish Language. London: Arnold.

Stewart, M. 1999. The Spanish Language Today. London: Routledge.

Villa-García, Julio and Álvaro González-Urzúa. 2016. A conversation on Spanglish. In theLINGUIST@NTNU, National Taiwan Normal University.

Whitley, M.S. 2002. English/Spanish Contrasts: A Course in Spanish Linguistics (2nd ed.). Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press.

 

The sounds of Spanish

Alarcos, E.. 1967. Fonología española. Madrid: Gredos

Hualde, J. I., Escobar, A. Olarrea, A. and Travis, C. 2010. Introducción a la lingüística hispánica. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Hualde, J. I. 2005. The Sounds of Spanish. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Whitley, M.S. 2002. English/Spanish Contrasts: A Course in Spanish Linguistics (2nd ed.). Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press.

 

The words of Spanish

Hualde, J.I., Escobar, A. Olarrea, A. and Travis, C. 2010. Introducción a la lingüística hispánica. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

RAE. 2009. Nueva gramática de la lengua española. Madrid: Espasa.

Wheatley, K. 2006. Sintaxis y morfología de la lengua española. New Jersey: Pearson.

Whitley, M.S.: English/Spanish Contrasts: A Course in Spanish Linguistics (2nd ed.) (Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2002).

 

The sentences of Spanish

Bello, Andrés. 1847 / 1970. Gramática de la lengua castellana. Buenos Aires: Editorial Sopena. 8a edición, corregida y aumentada por Rufino José Cuervo y Niceto Alcalá Zamora.

Bosque, I., and Gutiérrez-Rexach, J. 2009. Fundamentos de sintaxis formal. Madrid: Akal.

Hualde, J. I., Escobar, A. Olarrea, A. and Travis, C. 2010. Introducción a la lingüística hispánica. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

                Larson, R. 2010. Grammar as Science. Cambridge, Massachusetts: The MIT Press.

Scheduled activity hours

Lectures 22
Seminars 11
Independent study hours
Independent study 167

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Julio Villa-Garcia Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Background reading ( » 1 hr. pw)

Preparation for seminars (additional readings, exercises and practical assignments) (» 3 hrs. pw)

Assignment preparation

Revision

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