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The Study of Language – Part I: Why study it? P. Sebastian.

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1 The Study of Language – Part I: Why study it? P. Sebastian

2 Why study linguistics? 1.It’s what makes us distinctly human. 2.The more you know the more effective you are. 3.It’s interesting. 4.A well-educated person should know something about language. 5.“The study of language is ultimately the study of the mind.”

3 Aspects of Language Development Learn language Learn through language Learn about language

4 Deductive vs. Inductive Approaches Rule instruction vs. linguistic investigation

5 Linguistic Investigation Eu tenho os livros. Posso ter os bilhetes por favor? O gato correu para a casa. Eu conheci o professor hoje. Você tem as mochilas? What do the words o, a, os, and as mean in Portuguese and what are their functions? What determines their usage?

6 As regras definite-articles.html definite-articles.html

7 More investigations! ks.%20%0ACan%20I%20get%20the%20tickets%20please%3F% 20%0AThe%20cat%20ran%20to%20the%20house.%20%0AI%2 0met%20the%20teacher%20today.%20%0ADo%20you%20hav e%20the%20backpacks%3F ks.%20%0ACan%20I%20get%20the%20tickets%20please%3F% 20%0AThe%20cat%20ran%20to%20the%20house.%20%0AI%2 0met%20the%20teacher%20today.%20%0ADo%20you%20hav e%20the%20backpacks%3F

8 The Human Language 3:00-4:25 – Language is made up of rules that we must follow in order to communicate. There are violations of grammar rules that prevent meaning and there are those that simply distort it. 9:15-10:20 – Sounds, words, sentences (Language Productivity) 28:45-30:30 – “Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.” 30:30-35:00 Universal Grammar, differences and similarities between languages In what ways are human languages similar? 38:00-39:50 – Grammar of Warlpiri (inflective with suffixes to denote function of words) 44:00-45:00 - How effective is language? What is a spiral? Draw a picture of “it’s not going to rain” 50:00 – Displacement though abstraction (talking about future/past etc.)

9 The Study of Language – Part II: What it is and what it ain’t P. Sebastian

10 Why study language – Language Files It’s what makes us distinctly human It is evidence of our thoughts, ideas, and feelings It reflects identity Design tools for language instruction, design computers that can interact with humans using language, and treat people with language disorders

11 Some important concepts Linguistic competence vs. Linguistic performance The speech communication chain p. 7 Are there other models of speech communication? Try talking to each other at the same time.

12 What you know when you know a language Phonetic system Sounds production Phonological system Possible sound combinations Pterodactyl, fsap, libg Spaff, blig, splunch Word endings Morphological system Word parts Syntactical system I will pick the package up at eight o’clock. Package up pick at o’clock will the eight I. Semantic system Pragmatic system

13 What you don’t (necessarily) know when you know a language How to write Grammar (prescriptive) Linguistics vs. applied linguistics How do prescriptive rules that do not describe natural language use survive?

14 Descriptive vs. Prescriptive

15 Descriptive and Prescriptive Rules Handouts & 3 groups: come up with some descriptive rules for the grammar in the text provided.

16 Prescriptive grammar Advantages Efficient for large amounts of information or information too complex to discover on your own Allows for cognitive application (processing) Good for learners who don’t have exposure to context Provides a standard reference point Limitations Less authentic Detached from culture *(different between L1 and L2 acquisition) Doesn’t improve fluency in language Not as powerful, lessons are not retained as long

17 Descriptive grammar Advantages *See previous slide and think backwards Allows learner to follow personal interests/curiosities Motivating/exciting/inte resting Removes stigmas biases Allows learner to create their own context Using comparisons and contrasts Flexible to pace of learner Limitations Onerous (time- consuming and such) Lacks clear structure Often complex Requires more prep Assessment is a beast Norm-referencing is complicated

18 What is Language? “Knowing how, when and why to say what to whom.” Standards for Foreign Language Learning Which linguistic areas do associate with each part of this sentence?

19 The Study of Language – Part III: Design Features P. Sebastian

20 9 Ideas About Language -H. Daniels 1.Children learn their native language swiftly, efficiently, and largely without instruction 2.Language operates by rules 3.All languages have three major components: a sound system, a vocabulary, and a system of grammar 4.Everyone speaks a dialect (a variety of a particular language which has a certain set of lexical, phonological, and grammatical rules that distinguishes it from other dialects) 5.Speakers of all languages employ a range of styles and a set of subdialectes or jargons 6.Language change is normal (simplification and regularization p 29) 7.Languages are intimately related to the societies and individuals who use them (language and culture p. 31) 8.Value judgments about different languages or dialects are matters of taste 9.Writing is derivative of speech (fish = ghoti p. 34)

21 Natural vs. Constructed Language “The distinction between constructed languages and natural languages is that constructed languages are not the sort of system that a child can acquire naturally.”

22 Hockett’s Design Features of Language Some guy on Youtube Wikipedia Features unique to human language: Discreteness Moveable parts Displacement Talking about things not present Productivity Moving the moveable parts to create novel utterances

23 Arbitrary or Iconic?

24 The Onomatopoeia Animal sounds in other languages

25 Discussion Questions and other Activities #25 on p. 33 Act. 26

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