Scheda programma d'esame
Anno accademico2022/23
PeriodoSecondo semestre

Learning outcomes

This course will provide students with the foundations of Linguistics. Students will be familiar with the primary levels of linguistic analysis: phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. Students will be able to observe language from both a synchronic and a diachronic perspective. Students will then learn the basics of other subfields of Linguistics, such as discourse analysis, neurolinguistics, language acquisition, and computational linguistics. Finally, students will acquire knowledge about the variation of language through space and society.

Assessment criteria of knowledge

Assessment to monitor progress will be carried out in the form of three tests during the course. Such test will contribute to the final evaluation.


Students will be able to use the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) to transcribe words from English or any other language. Students will analyze the structure of words and the syntax of English texts. They will understand the dynamics of language change and the social and geographical factors that affect language variation. They will be able to challenge some traditional misconceptions concerning language and will learn how Linguistics can help diversity and inclusion. Finally, they will be familiar with the practical applications of Linguistics in today’s world.

Assessment criteria of skills

Students will carry out practical exercises.


Students will improve their analytical skills and their critical thinking. 

Students will be able to observe language from a scientific perspective. 

Students will be able to analyze language from a phonetic, phonological, morphological, syntactic, and pragmatic perspective.





Prerequisites for further study


Teaching methods

Frontal lectures. All data will be shown through PowerPoint or the blackboard. Active student participation will be encouraged. Students will be involved in classroom activities to put theory into practice and train their analytical and critical thinking skills.

  1. Introduction to language and Linguistics
  2. From traditional grammar to linguistic typology
  3. The sounds of languages: phonetics 1
  4. The sounds of languages: phonetics 2
  5. The sounds of languages: phonology
  6. Morphology 1
  7. Morphology 2
  8. Training on phonetics, phonology, and morphology
  9. First intermediate test. Syntax 1
  10. Syntax 2
  11. Semantics
  12. Writing systems
  13. Historical linguistics 1
  14. Historical linguistics 2
  15. Language and culture
  16. Sign languages
  17. Neurolinguistics
  18. Second intermediate test. Animal communication; the origins of human language
  19. Language contact; language planning and artificial languages; forensic linguistics
  20. Regional variation in language
  21. Social variation in language
  22. Pragmatics
  23. Discourse Analysis
  24. First Language Acquisition
  25. Second Language Acquisition; bilingualism and multilingualism
  26. Third intermediate test. Computational linguistics
  27. Wrap-up

Reading list:


Yule, George 2020. The study of Language. 7th edn. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Dawson, Hope C. & Michael Phelan (eds.) 2016. Language files 12: Materials for an introduction to language and linguistics. Columbus: The Ohio State University Press.

Genetti, Carol (ed.) 2014. How languages work: An introduction to language and linguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Parkvall, Mikael 2006. The limits of language: Almost everything you didn’t know you didn’t know about language and languages. London: Battlebridge.


N.B. These books are indicated for reference only: students need NOT buy them.

All necessary learning materials will be provided via Moodle.

Non-attending students info

Non-attending students need to contact the instructor.

Assessment methods

Three intermediate tests during the course will precede the final oral examination. 70% attendance is needed to be admitted to the final oral examination. The evaluation will be determined as follows: (i) interest and participation during lectures (20%); (ii) intermediate tests (21%); (iii) final oral examination (59%).

Work placement



This course will be held in English. The course is for students of the International Programme in Humanities and Erasmus students who want to study General Linguistics in English. Students who need 6 CFU will only attend the first 18 lectures. Students who need 9 CFU will attend all lectures.

The course will begin on February 21 

Lecture schedule:

Tuesdays, 8,30-10, Room Pao B2

Wednesdays, 16-17,30, Room Guid G1

Fridays, 12-13,30, Room Pao E1

Final oral examination schedule:

First session: June 6 at 9 am (Room R7, Palazzo Ricci)

Second session: June 26 at 9 am (Room R7, Palazzo Ricci)

Third session: July 17 at 9 am (Room R7, Palazzo Ricci)

Autumn session: August 30 at 9 am (Room Pao-C1, Via Paoli 15)

Exam Committee: Ciucci (chair), Lai (2nd member), Cerri (3rd member), Rovai (substitute)

Ultimo aggiornamento 30/04/2023 14:06