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English Linguistics - EDU00010M

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  • Department: Education
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Volha Arkhipenka
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2024-25

Module summary

This is a core module on the MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL).

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 1 2024-25

Module aims

To provide essentials in the study of the structure of English
To provide students with the opportunity to understand the organizing principles that unite the various levels of linguistic analysis
To relate the above to language use in a socio-cultural context
To provide an overview of how the above theories are linked to the processes involved in teaching English as a second/foreign language

Module learning outcomes

Subject content:

  • analyze the structure of English at various levels of description (phonological, morphological and lexical, syntactic, and semantic)
  • apply the knowledge of English linguistics to describe and analyze L2 learner performance data
  • demonstrate a clear understanding and awareness of the structure of the English language and its relationship to the teaching and learning of English in social contexts

Academic and graduate skills

  • formulate arguments and contribute to discussion
  • participate in group work, presentations, peer-teaching activities, tutorials, and problem solving activities
  • demonstrate effective planning and time management
  • word-process, manage files, use e-mail, VLE and the Web

Module content


Phonetics and phonology

This session provides an introduction to English sounds and their categorization (Phonetics), and their systematic occurrences (Phonology) in segments. Students will have the opportunity to learn to identify, describe and transcribe some of the most relevant phonetic contrasts and will learn about features of connected speech.


This session examines word structure and the processes of word formation in English, such as affixation, conversion and compounding. The session also introduces the concept of morpheme, the smallest unit of meaning or grammatical function.

Grammar and syntax

This session offers a brief introduction to modern approaches to English grammar and will examine the relationship between words, phrases, clauses and sentences.


This session explores the meaning of words, covering the various types of meaning relations between words, the semantic roles of words, and how words can be analysed in terms of semantic features.


This session will discuss meaning in context, emphasising the importance of shared knowledge and presupposition in everyday communication. Speech acts, felicity conditions and co-operation between interlocutors will be considered, and, in particular, its effect on politeness.

Text and discourse

This session introduces the concept of language as a resource for social action and inter-action, and the implications of this perspective on the study of language itself. The basic tenets of Text and Discourse will be presented, such as the primacy of naturally occurring language, the importance of participants’ own interpretations, and the structural analysis of discursive practices.


This session will investigate the interplay between language and society and how we vary our language use in different social contexts, using recent research evidence to discuss both methods, interdisciplinary and future avenues for sociolinguistics.

Corpus approaches to language analysis

This session will look at the key concepts associated with corpus linguistics and examine how corpus approaches are being used to help develop our understanding of language and how they in turn can impact on our teaching. This session will act as preparation and link in to the material that will be covered in the final session.

Applying linguistics in the English language classroom

Building on the content discussed in previous weeks, the final session will explore ways in which English Linguistics can be applied to classroom teaching. While each lecture will have emphasised practical implications, the final session we will use examples of teaching materials, resources and tools to illustrate ways in which module content can be used in the teaching of English.


Task Length % of module mark
Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
2 hour closed in person exam
2 hours 100

Special assessment rules


Additional assessment information

The summative assessment for this module is a 48 hour open examination.


Task Length % of module mark
Closed/in-person Exam (Centrally scheduled)
2 hour closed in person exam
2 hours 100

Module feedback

You will receive feedback in a range of ways throughout this module. This will include oral feedback in class and written comments on performance in formative assessments. You will be provided physical written feedback on exam report sheets and you will be invited to a group meeting to discuss and review exam feedback. The feedback is returned to students in line with university policy. Please check the Guide to Assessment, Standards, Marking and Feedback for more information.

Indicative reading

A good introductory text to linguistics is the following:

Yule, G. (2010). The study of language (4th ed.). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.