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.
  • Class Syllabus (Fall 2019): [pdf]

  • Teaching materials (Fall 2019): Course website [Enrolled students only

SPAN 204B - Generative Syntax
Description:  This course will examine 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, and the ability to construct and work with a formal system
  • Class Syllabus (Fall 2019): [pdf]

  • Teaching materials (Fall 2019): Course website [Enrolled students only

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").
  • Class Syllabus (Fall 2018): [pdf]

  • Section Syllabus (Fall 2018): [pdf]

  • Teaching materials (Fall 2018): Course website [Enrolled students only

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.

  • Class Syllabus (Winter 2019): [pdf]

  • Section Syllabus (Winter 2019): [pdf]

  • Teaching materials (Winter 2019): Course website [Enrolled students only

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.

  • Class Syllabus (Spring 2019): [pdf]

  • Section Syllabus (Spring 2019): [pdf]

  • Teaching materials (Spring 2019): Course website [Enrolled students only




UCLA Department of Spanish & Portuguese
5310 Rolfe Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1532


© 2019 by Victoria Mateu.