Issues in Linguistic Research

Subject 175-408 (2009)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2009. Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 25.00
Level: 4 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2009:

Semester 1, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 3-hour seminar per week
Total Time Commitment: 3 contact hours/week , 17 additional hours/week. Total of 20 hours per week.
Prerequisites: Admission into 4th year or above in Linguistics and Applied Linguistics or by approval of coordinator.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Dr Rachel Nordlinger


Dr Rachel Nordlinger
Subject Overview: This subject takes a broad and historically based view of some of the great topics that have preoccupied thinkers in linguistics, and how they interrelate, by juxtaposing the history of ideas on each of a dozen topics with relevant contemporary debates. Topics to be covered include defining properties of language; sign and system; arbitrariness versus constraints on the system; the role of typology; the role of formal modelling of language systems; linguistic relativity; synchrony versus diachrony; linguistics as a science; the linguistic system and the community of users; the boundaries of the language system; functionalism, adaptation and evolution of language systems; categories, classical and otherwise; and language, mind and brain.
  • see how the great questions and puzzles of the present are shaped by the historical concerns of the past;
  • understand how developments in one field are built on those of another;
  • read and understand ideas as formulated by their original discoverers sympathetically, but critically;
  • have a broad overview of, and be able to articulate, the great questions in the field of linguistics.
Assessment: 1 x oral presentation written up as a 2,000 word report (30%) Class discussion for three other topics throughout the semester (30%) Essay of 4,000 words due at the end of semester (40%)
Prescribed Texts: A subject reader will be available
  • ()
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • develop their skills in research;
  • develop their skills in critical thinking and analysis.
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: English Language Studies
Linguistics && Applied Linguistics
Linguistics and Applied Linguistics
Linguistics and Applied Linguistics

Download PDF version.