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2020/21 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

LING3310 Interactional Linguistics

20 creditsClass Size: 23

Module manager: Dr Leendert Plug
Email: l.plug@leeds.ac.uk

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2020/21

Pre-requisite qualifications

Students are required to have completed one of the following modules, or equivalent:
- MODL1060 Language: Structure and Sound
- ENGL1021 Analysing English
Students who have not completed MODL1060 Language: Structure and Sound should be prepared to do some additional reading to familiarise themselves with linguistic concepts built on in this module. Chapters 1 to 6 of Genetti’s How languages work: An introduction to language and linguistics (Cambridge University Press, 2014) are a good starting point.

This module is mutually exclusive with

LING2420Interactional Linguistics

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module introduces students to the study of language as it is used in verbal interaction. Mainstream linguistics has long focused on the analysis of language competence in speakers and listeners doing simple language tasks. To fully understand how language works, we must also understand how it is used in everyday interaction. This module takes its cues from the sociological discipline of Conversation Analysis in viewing interactions as sequences of utterances that are highly organised and subject to implicit rules. This module covers ways in which these sequences are constructed ― how interlocutors take turns to talk, how they formulate their turns to demonstrate their understanding of prior turns, how they resolve interactional difficulties such as disagreements, and so on ― and how linguistic and phonetic features play a role in this construction. Students will be confronted with data from English and other languages, and do original interactional linguistic research on English or foreign language material that they record themselves. Students are expected to have been introduced to linguistics on a Level 1 module in linguistics or English language before enrolling on this module.

Objectives

This module aims to:
(1) acquaint students with the main issues that the discipline of interactional linguistics seeks to address: what are the linguistic building blocks of spoken interaction, and how do interactants use linguistic and phonetic resources to achieve interactional aims?
(2) cover core conversation-analytic concepts relating to turn-taking, sequence organisation, preference, repair and topic organisation, from a linguistic perspective
(3) introduce students to recent research through lectures surveying case studies of interactional linguistic phenomena
(4) consider the extent to which findings on interactional linguistic phenomena observed in English generalise to other language, and consider what these phenomena tell us about language processing and acquisition
(5) develop students' analysis skills through the transcription and analysis of interactional data, independently as well as in group sessions
(6) develop students' communication and research skills through an assessed project involving the recording, transcription and analysis of a short conversation

Learning outcomes
On completing this module, students should be able to demonstrate:
(1) a thorough understanding of the main issues addressed in interactional linguistic research
(2) a strong command of core conversation-analytic concepts relating to turn-taking, sequence organisation, preference, repair and topic organisation, and an ability to apply these concepts in analyses of interactional data
(3) a clear understanding of recent research findings in interactional linguistics
(4) a clear understanding of how findings on interactional linguistic phenomena observed in English generalise to other language, and of what these phenomena tell us about language processing and acquisition
(5) practical analysis skills, including skills in transcribing spontaneous language data
(6) an ability to conduct a small research project involving the recording, transcription and analysis of a short conversation, and to communicate its results effectively


Syllabus

This module comprises a lecture programme and a practical programme, running in parallel. The first half of the lecture programme covers core conversation-analytic concepts and discusses how they relate to traditional linguistic categories. The second half discusses a number of case studies in detail, based on published research literature, and explores implications of interactional linguistic research for our understanding of how language processing and development work. The first half of the practical programme provides students with an opportunity to practice applying the concepts introduced in the lectures to selected data fragments, in guided exercises. One early practical session is also devoted to guidance about the independent research project that students undertake. The second half of the practical programme revolves around the collective analysis of fragments of data provided by students themselves; these ‘data sessions’ allow students to practice making observations on interactional data, and begin to formulate analyses in a supported environment.

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Workshop51.005.00
Lecture101.0010.00
Seminar51.005.00
Private study hours180.00
Total Contact hours20.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

Students are expected to devote 180 hours of private study time to this module, with the following suggested breakdown:
• Preparation for lectures (reading): (10x4=) 40 hours
• Preparation for workshops (practical analysis): (5x4=) 20 hours
• Preparation for seminars (practical analysis): (5x4=) 20 hours
• Preparation of the transcription and analysis assignments: 30 hours
• Data recording and preparation of the analysis report: 70 hours

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Students are given informal feedback and individual help during 'workshop' sessions where relevant, and they receive written feedback on a formative transcription exercise if they complete it. They also receive written feedback on the first assessed assignment. The instructions for the research project are disseminated and discussed early on in the module and students are invited to bring their project data to the seminars. Students are given informal feedback on their seminar contributions and guidance on how to develop their analysis for the purpose of the final assessed report.

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information


Coursework
Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Report2,500-word analysis report70.00
AssignmentData set(s) with questions30.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 10/08/2020 08:41:34

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