LING217-19S1 (C) Semester One 2019

Sentence Structure

15 points
18 Feb 2019 - 23 Jun 2019


This course offers you the opportunity to discover the principles behind the way in which speakers of a language combine words into phrases and sentences. We will take a scientific look at utterances you encounter in everyday life, and you will learn to use tree diagrams to represent the structural patterns you find.

This course provides an introduction to grammatical phenomena in both morphology (word structure) and syntax (sentence structure). Both types of structure are essential parts of how languages encode meaning. The goal of the course is to understand the range of structural mechanisms that languages employ and the interaction between morphological and syntactic structure. Different empirical methods for uncovering grammatical structure are compared: introspection, corpus data, psycholinguistic experiments, and patterns from language acquisition.

Learning Outcomes

  • Through their experiences with this course, students will be able to:
  • work both independently and collaboratively to identify patterns in language data
  • collect and then analyze real-world language data
  • understand arguments based on the analysis and comparison of data
  • communicate their findings effectively and support their arguments with empirical data
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

      Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.


LING101 or LING111 or ENGL123 or ENGL112


LING201, LING206, LING211

Timetable 2019

Students must attend one activity from each section.

Lecture A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Wednesday 14:00 - 16:00 Rehua 008 Computer Lab 18 Feb - 7 Apr
29 Apr - 2 Jun
Lecture B
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Friday 09:00 - 10:00 F1 Lectorial 18 Feb - 7 Apr
29 Apr - 2 Jun

Course Coordinator

Jonathan Dunn


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Quizzes 25% Weeks 1-2 (before class)
Attendance 15% Weeks 1-12 (in class)
Mid-term project 25% Week 8
Final project 35% Week 12

Textbooks / Resources

Required Texts

Carstairs-McCarthy, Andrew,1945-; An introduction to English morphology :words and their structure; Edinburgh University Press, 2002 (2nd edition - published 2018).

Miller, J. E.1942-; An introduction to English syntax; Edinburgh University Press, 2001 (2nd edition, published 2008).

This is the only edition of the text that you can buy new. You are also welcome to use the 2nd edition of this book (published in 2007), which was the set text in previous years, and thus may still be available secondhand.

Both textbooks are available from the UC library.

Course links

Library portal
The course outline is available on LEARN (only for students enrolled in this course).

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.

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences.

All LING217 Occurrences

  • LING217-19S1 (C) Semester One 2019