TEACHING

Courses
 
SPAN/PORTGSE M35 - Spanish, Portuguese, and the Nature of Language
Description:  Introduction to what is known about the Human Language with an emphasis on Spanish and Portuguese data. We will explore the nature of Language –what it means to know a language, how it differs from other animal systems of communication, and common misconceptions about Language and the field of Linguistics. We will critically examine the different features of language structure –phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics; as well as various psycholinguistic aspects of language, including first and second language acquisition, bilingualism, language loss, language and the brain, and how language interacts with other cognitive domains.
  • Last Class Syllabus (Fall 2022): [pdf]

SPAN 100B - Spanish Syntax
Description:  This course examines basic principles of generative syntax as they apply to specific syntactic structures of English and Spanish primarily. The goals of the course are: (i) to learn basic techniques of syntactic analysis (e.g. constituent analysis, proposing and justifying syntactic structures and movement rules); (ii) to gain a deeper understanding of particular aspects of Spanish syntax. No previous knowledge of (generative) syntax is assumed. Coursework emphasizes argumentation, the ability to construct and work with a formal system, and experimentation. It is taught in Spanish.
  • Last Class Syllabus (Winter 2022): [pdf]

SPAN 160 - Topics in Spanish Linguistics: Child Language Acquisition
Description:  This course is concerned with the question of how children acquire their native language. After laying the theoretical framework, the course explores how children gain competence in different aspects of the language — the sound system (phonetics and phonology), word meaning (lexical semantics), word formation (morphology); and sentence structure (syntax) — on their journey towards adult competence. Beyond general theory, which transcends any one language, there will be a focus on Spanish (and other Romance languages) and English.
The course primarily considers monolingual and typical language development, but also examines “nontypical” circumstances such as acquisition beyond the “critical period”, bilingual and child L2 development, and language disorders.
  • Last Class Syllabus (Fall 2021): [pdf]

SPAN 204A/B - (Spanish) Generative Syntax
 
Description:  This course examines basic principles of generative syntax as they apply to specific syntactic structures of English and Spanish primarily. The goals of the course are: (i) to learn basic techniques of syntactic analysis (e.g. constituent analysis, proposing and justifying syntactic structures and movement rules); (ii) to become acquainted with some of the theoretical principles of syntactic theory; and (iii) to gain a deeper understanding of particular aspects of Spanish syntax. No previous knowledge of (generative) syntax is assumed. Coursework emphasizes syntactic argumentation (with few ad hoc postulations), problem solving, the ability to construct and work with a formal system, and experimentation.
  • Last Class Syllabus (Fall 2022): [pdf]

SPAN 256B - Studies in Spanish Linguistics: First Language Acquisition of Spanish Morphosyntax
 
Description:  This course is designed to introduce students to current acquisition theory and empirical studies (naturalistic and experimental) of Spanish (and Romance)-speaking children's grammatical development. We investigate the more widely studied areas of (morpho‐)syntactic development such as agreement, explicit and null arguments, verb structure, A- and A’‐movement, as well as some issues in semantic/pragmatic development. We explore these topics within the context of more general questions about language development such as the role of (innate) grammatical principles, input frequency and learning, as well as various performance-related and methodological issues. Although the focus is on typically developing monolingual Spanish-speaking children, we also examine bilingual development in relation to some of these topics.
  • Last Class Syllabus (Winter 2022): [pdf]

LING 130 - Language Development
 
Description: This course is concerned with the question of how children naturally acquire their native language. The primary focus is on children’s development of grammatical knowledge and the various stages that they pass through on the way to adult competence. We will look at development in the various components of grammar- phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax and semantics/pragmatics - and we will also discuss some theories of language development. You will be introduced to child language data - what children perceive, say, and comprehend in the course of development - and learn how to analyze that data. We will also look at language acquisition in English and other languages, as well as language development in special populations and circumstances (e.g. bilingualism, children with SLI, acquisition beyond the "critical period").
  • Last Class Syllabus (Fall 2018): [pdf]

LING C140 - Bilingualism and Second Language Acquisition
Description: This course is an introduction to the study of bilingualism, heritage languages, and second/third language (L2/L3) acquisition. The focus of the course will be on understanding the nature of the two simultaneously developing grammars/L2 grammar and the grammatical processes underlying bilingual, L2/L3 acquisition, and heritage languages. We will cover various components of the developing grammars, including phonetics/phonology, morphology, and syntax, and we will consider topics such as age effects/critical period in L2 acquisition, the role of Universal Grammar, input and learning principles, the relation of the L2 (and L3) grammar to the L1 grammar, cognitive and neurolinguistic effects of bilingualism/ L2 acquisition, bilinguals with SLI, heritage speakers, and the grammar and pragmatics of code-switching.

  • Last Class Syllabus (Winter 2019): [pdf]

LING C135 - Neurolinguistics

 

Description: Neurolinguistics is the study of how language is represented in the brain: that is, how and where our brains store our knowledge of the language (or languages) that we speak, understand, read, and write, what happens in our brains as we acquire that knowledge, what happens as we use it in our everyday lives, and what happens when we have a neurological disorder or damage to certain areas of the brain. This class will survey four major topics in Neurolinguistics: 1) Neuroanatomy, hemispheric specialization for language, and techniques to study this; 2) Language processing in the healthy brain from early speech perception to higher level semantic interpretation; 3) A range of acquired and developmental language disorders, including speech sound disorders, aphasias, Specific Language Impairment, and Autism Spectrum Disorder; 4) Other issues of interest such as the Critical Period for first and second language acquisition, Sign Language and the Brain, Bilingualism and the Brain, and Language and Thought.

  • Last Class Syllabus (Spring 2019): [pdf]