- Class Number 6544
- Term Code 3360
- Class Info
- Unit Value 6 units
- Mode of Delivery In Person
- Dr Bethwyn Evans
- Dr Bethwyn Evans
- Class Dates
- Class Start Date 24/07/2023
- Class End Date 27/10/2023
- Census Date 31/08/2023
- Last Date to Enrol 31/07/2023
This course takes as its starting point the fact that all languages change. It explores explanations and motivations for change across different linguistic domains, as well as the ways in which our understanding of language change enables us to reconstruct past linguistic states and make certain cultural inferences. The course introduces students, on a global scale, to cross-linguistic tendencies of language change, the linguistic and socio-cultural factors that underpin language change, and models of language classification. Both traditional and innovative theories and methodologies are shaped by the study of two large language families: Indo-European, encompassing languages from Ireland in western Europe to India and Bangladesh in South Asia; and Austronesian, which spans Asia and the Pacific, from Taiwan to Easter Island. Students will learn about the role of these two language families in past and on-going developments in the field of historical linguistics, and in our understanding of general principles of language change and linguistic reconstruction.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of how and why languages change
- Apply methods of describing linguistic changes and reconstructing earlier stages of language
- Evaluate and apply models for determining genetic relationships between languages
- Demonstrate an understanding of the place of European, Asian and Pacific languages in theories and models of language change
- Undertake guided research in some area of language change
- Critically assess research papers on language change and historical linguistics
The textbook for this course is:
Millar, Robert McColl. 2023. Trask's historical linguistics. Oxon, UK: Routledge. (fourth edition)
This book is available online through the ANU Library.
Most of the required readings are from the course textbook. Course readings not from the textbook are available through the course Wattle site.
Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
- Written comments on individual assessment items
- Verbal comments in classes to the whole class, small groups and to individuals
Student FeedbackANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.
|Week/Session||Summary of Activities||Assessment|
|1||Language continuity and change||Weeks 1 - 2|
|2||Understanding sound change||Weeks 3 - 4|
|3||The Comparative Method in Linguistics||Weeks 5 - 6|
|4||Understanding grammatical and lexical change||Weeks 7 - 8|
|5||Language histories in broader contexts||Week 9 - 12|
|Assessment task||Value||Due Date||Return of assessment||Learning Outcomes|
|Class participation||10 %||*||*||1,2,3,4|
|Analytical Assignment 1||15 %||17/08/2023||24/08/2023||1,2,3|
|Analytical Assignment 2||15 %||31/08/2023||10/09/2023||1,2,3|
|Language Family Critique||25 %||28/09/2023||09/10/2023||1,3,4|
* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details
PoliciesANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:
Assessment RequirementsThe ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.
Moderation of AssessmentMarks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.
As noted above for Class Participation (Assessment Task 1), students are expected to actively participate in the seminar and tutorial classes (3 hours in total) each week. Participating in seminar and tutorial classes means engaging with individual and group exercises and activities that form part of the classes, and contributing to relevant online discussions. The participation mark also includes completion of short online quizzes each week from Week 2, which relate to the weekly reading.
There is no exam for this course.
Assessment Task 1
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4
It is expected that students actively participate in the seminar and tutorial classes (3 hours in total) each week. This includes participating, individually and in groups, in class activities and exercises, contributing to online discussions, and completing a weekly online quiz (from Week 2). See the course Wattle site for more details.
Assessment Task 2
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3
Analytical Assignment 1
An analytical assignment (c. 600 words), which involves historical linguistic analysis of a set of language data based on methods learnt and practised in classes. See course Wattle site for more details, including assignment instructions and assessment criteria.
Assessment Task 3
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3
Analytical Assignment 2
An analytical assignment (c. 600-800 words), which involves historical linguistic analysis of a set of language data based on methods learnt and practised in classes. See course Wattle site for more details, including assignment instructions and assessment criteria.
Assessment Task 4
Learning Outcomes: 1,3,4
Language Family Critique
A 1,500-word critique based on researching and assessing the application of methods and theories of historical linguistics to a particular language family. See the course Wattle site for more details, including critique instructions and assessment criteria.
Assessment Task 5
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4
A 3,000-word research essay that explores a topic relevant to the study of language histories, methods and theories of historical linguistics and/or models of language change. The essay is completed in two stages, with the initial topic proposal and annotated bibliography worth 5%, and the final essay worth 30%. Further information about the research essay, including detailed instructions and topic suggestions, is available from the course Wattle site.
Academic IntegrityAcademic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.
The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. Assessment items for this course are to be submitted electronically. You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of your assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education), submission must be through Turnitin.
Assessment items are to be submitted electronically.
Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for the online quizzes.
Referencing RequirementsAccepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.
For online quizzes, marks and feedback are provided online after the quiz deadline, and further feedback is provided verbally in the associated classes. For participation in class activities and exercises and in online discussions, feedback is provided in the associated classes. For all other assessment items marks and feedback are provided through Turnitin, and additional verbal feedback may be given in associated classes.
Extensions and PenaltiesExtensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.
Resubmission of Assignments
Resubmission of assessment items is not accepted.
Distribution of grades policyAcademic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes. Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.
Support for studentsThe University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).
- ANU Health, safety & wellbeing for medical services, counselling, mental health and spiritual support
- ANU Diversity and inclusion for students with a disability or ongoing or chronic illness
- ANU Dean of Students for confidential, impartial advice and help to resolve problems between students and the academic or administrative areas of the University
- ANU Academic Skills and Learning Centre supports you make your own decisions about how you learn and manage your workload.
- ANU Counselling Centre promotes, supports and enhances mental health and wellbeing within the University student community.
- ANUSA supports and represents undergraduate and ANU College students
- PARSA supports and represents postgraduate and research students
Dr Bethwyn Evans