A historical study of the English language including consideration of its place among the languages of the world and stages of its development such as Old, Middle, and Modern English. The course will address the nature and mechanisms of language change with attention to both linguistic and historical conditions related to language evolution.
Required Textbook (available at University Bookstore):
(on Electronic Reserve at Reinert Alumni Library, http://eres.creighton.edu/eres/courseindex.aspx) (the instructor will supply the password needed to access materials on EReserve). Notice electronic reserve articles are in Adobe Acrobat .pdf format – if you are unable to open them you will need to install in your computer the free Adobe Acrobat Reader software available at: http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html
1) Term Project & Presentation (25%)
Each student will design and complete a term project on any aspect of language, linguistics, or the history and character of the English language. Projects may be conventional academic papers but may also take other forms, including creative work (painting, music, sculpture, film, etc.), documentaries, websites, experiments, field research, or practical studies gathering and analyzing data on current usages of the language in specific contexts (for example: group or regional dialects, slang, origins of words, features of pronunciation, specialized or unusual lexicons, etc.). Projects addressing issues in current phonology (the sound of the language) should make use of audio/video recordings and may also be accompanied by a written paper. In general, students are encouraged to be creative and imaginative and to choose material and media which are interesting and stimulating. Art works are acceptable provided they are relevant and provide insight into some aspect of the language and its current or historical use. Projects may be undertaken individually or in groups (group projects need to be substantial and extensive enough to justify the participation of two or more people). All projects must be approved by the instructor in advance (see Schedule below). All projects must be presented to the class at the end of the term (approx. 5-10 minute presentations, see Schedule below). Students choosing to write a paper may follow MLA, APA, or Chicago format guidelines. Students may also use the instructor's "Guidelines for Papers").2) Two Exams (25 % each)
Students will take two exams covering the materials studied. Exams will include objective, multiple choice, short answer, and problem-solving questions.Questions will be based primarily on the material outlined in the course webnotes and emphasized in the lectures and class discussions. See schedule below for exam dates (Exam 1, Exam 2).3) Participation and Other (25 %)
Class participation, attendance, effort, attentiveness, preparation, responsibility, and, in general, active and constructive involvement in all aspects of the course will also be taken into consideration in the course grade.
GRADING AND OTHER POLICIES
Make-ups/extensions for a missed deadline will only be given in cases of documented serious illness or other valid, non-frivolous excuse such as documented participation in official University academic, service or sports events (it will be up to the instructor to determine and decide on the acceptability of an excuse). Otherwise, students must meet all deadlines specified in the syllabus.
Academic Honesty and Class Conduct Policy
All students in the class are expected to observe the University's guidelines on student conduct as described in the Code of Conduct and Creighton University's Student Handbook (especially the section on "Academic Honesty Policy" dealing with problems of plagiarism, cheating, etc.). All work turned in for credit in this course must be personal and original, produced during the course of the semester and for the specific purposes and according to the guidelines of the given assignments. Any misrepresentations, concealments, or distortions of source, origin, collaboration or authorship of such materials will be considered forms of academic dishonesty and will result in failing the given assignment or, at the discretion of the instructor, the entire course. Problems such as repeated lateness arriving to class (or departing early), inattentiveness, or disruptive behavior may adversely affect attendance and/or the class participation grade. Seriously disruptive behavior can also result, at the discretion of the instructor, in more severe penalties, including failing the course.
An attendance measurement will be calculated equal to the percentage of total class time attended. The course grade may not exceed that percentage (i.e. if a student attended only 75% of the total class time, the course grade may not be higher than 75 or C). Notice also that, at the discretion of the instructor, any student missing more than 30% of the total class time may fail the course.
The University considers a student's Creighton email address the official means of communication with faculty and administrators. All students are responsible for checking their email messages as they might contain important and time-sensitive information relevant to the course, including notifications on changes to reading and other assignments, deadlines, class cancellations or reschedulings, etc. A student who prefers to receive email at a different address must inform the instructor.
All aspects of the course will be graded on a 100-point scale where 90-100 = A, 87-89 = B+, 80-86 = B, 77-79 = C+, 70-76 = C, 60-69 = D, and 0-59 = F. At the discretion of the instructor, a normative curve may be applied to the grades at the end of the term. The course grade will be calculated according to the following formula:
In addition to the reading assigned in the textbook, material in the web outlines linked through the entries below is also required reading and must be done before class. Recommended reading is optional. Exams will be based on material covered up until the class just before the exam.
Wed Jan 10
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Last updated: 04/05/2007