This module is designed to prepare students wishing to join a degree course in the Department of Language and Linguistics. It is also a suitable choice for students who simply have an interest in language and it similarly provides a sound academic background for the study of subjects which rely extensively on proficient use of the English language such as Literature, History, Sociology, and Philosophy.


1. To introduce and explain linguistic terms
2. To raise students' awareness of key concepts and issues within the different branches of linguistics and to equip students with the tools to carry out linguistic analyses
3. To broaden students' knowledge of linguistic theory through application of theory

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module students will be expected to be able to:

1. Account for linguistic variation across speech communities;
2. Identify the major means by which words are built and have a sound grasp of basic grammatical description;
3. Classify the speech sounds of English;
4. Account for the developmental stages of first and second language acquisition;
5. Demonstrate knowledge of key linguistic concepts and theories and have the skills to carry out linguistic analyses;
6. Interpret linguistic research and apply it to the study of linguistics.


Autumn term
Language change and variation
The words of English (morphology)
The sounds of English (phonetics)

Spring term
The grammar of English (syntax)
Child first language acquisition
Adult second language acquisition

Summer term
Revision and exam preparation