ENLA101-19SU2 (D) Summer Nov 2019 start (Distance)

The English Language

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 11 November 2019
End Date: Sunday, 22 December 2019
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Friday, 15 November 2019
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Friday, 6 December 2019


This course introduces students to the study of the English language, its words, sounds and sentences. It also introduces the conceptual and analytical tools which linguists use to understand how languages are constructed.

This course is designed to introduce you to the study of LINGUISTICS, particularly the linguistics of the English language. The aim of the course is to show you how English works as a system for connecting speech sounds with meaning. Throughout the course, we will be guided by the following over-arching question: when a baby learns English as its first language, what aspects of the linguistic system does it have to master if it is to have a successful conversation? To answer this question, we start with single speech sounds, and then think about how they are combined to make words. Then we consider how words combine to make phrases, and finally we examine the structure of whole sentences.

In the first half of the course, we focus on how English speech is pronounced. How do we move our speech articulators when we produce sounds? How is a Kiwi accent similar to and different from accents from elsewhere? What tools do you need to analyse accent variation properly? In this part of the course you will learn how to use the International Phonetic Alphabet to transcribe how words are pronounced by speakers. In the second half of the course, we focus on the structure of English sentences. As well as practicing how to identify different words types (nouns, verbs, adverbs, etc), you will examine how words are structured into phrases, clauses and sentences, and you will learn how we combine words in different ways to generate new and complex meanings. In this part of the course, you will learn how to conduct a syntactic analysis which can reveal, among other things, underlying ambiguities between sentences.

An important part of the course is that we do not only examine the English language as an academic subject, but also learn how this knowledge can be applied and used across many different fields and careers.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, students will:

1. be able to demonstrate their understanding of the basic technical terms used by linguists to describe the various systems of which languages are composed: sounds, morphemes and words, phrases and clauses.
2. be able to accurately transcribe in broad phonetics a section of written English,
3. be able to demonstrate their understanding of how to analyse the structure of words into syllables and morphemes,
4. be able to demonstrate their understanding of how analyse the structure of sentences into their grammatical constituents.
5. be able to demonstrate their awareness of how the skills learned in the course can be applied in real life contexts


ENGL123, ENGL112, LING111, LING101

Equivalent Courses

Timetable Note

This summer school version of the course a distance learning course. It can be studied from anywhere – there is no need to be physically present on the University of Canterbury campus. The course works like this: there are 3-4 online lectures each week. These are videos, which are uploaded in blocks, so you can watch them whenever is convenient for you in a given week. All online content for the first half of the course will be available in week 1, and all content for the second half of the course will be available in week 3. This should help you plan your workload. There will also be tutorial exercises, designed to help you practice the analytical skills we learn. By completing these tasks, you will develop the skills you need for the course assessments. Help and advice will be given via an online forum for the course, and via email.

Course Coordinator

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences Head of Department

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $761.00

International fee $3,188.00

* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.

Minimum enrolments

This course will not be offered if less than 1 person applies to enrol.

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences.

All ENLA101 Occurrences

  • ENLA101-19S1 (C) Semester One 2019
  • ENLA101-19SU2 (D) Summer Nov 2019 start (Distance)