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LINGUIST 1A03 Introduction to Linguistics I

Academic Year: Fall 2017

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Dr. Catherine Anderson

Email: canders@mcmaster.ca

Office: Togo Salmon Hall 503

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 26241


Office Hours: Tuesdays 3:30 in the MDCL lobby; Fridays 11:00-12:00 in TSH-503

Course Objectives:

This course involves blended learning, which means that some of the course activities take place on-line within Avenue. In addition to the two weekly scheduled class periods, students should plan to spend about two additional hours each week completing activities on-line.

 By the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • begin to understand the fundamental ways of thinking in Linguistics
  • explain how humans produce speech sounds
  • transcribe the sounds of Canadian English and other languages using the International Phonetic Alphabet
  • use data from a variety of languages to analyze how speech sounds are organized
  • analyze how words are formed in English and other languages

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

O'Grady, W. and J. Archibald. Contemporary Linguistic Analysis: An Introduction. Toronto: Pearson.
Either the 7th edition or 8th edition is acceptable.

Merrells, T. and A. Moro. Study Guide to accompany Contemporary Linguistic Analysis. Toronto: Pearson. (optional)

iClicker response device (optional)

These books are all also used in Linguistics 1AA3.

Method of Assessment:

Ten weekly quizzes 24% Completed on Avenue each Wednesday-Thursday. Your grade is calculated from your best eight quiz scores.
Two written assignments 12% Submitted on Avenue on Friday September 29 and Friday November 17.
Midterm test 16% A 45-minute test including multiple-choice and written answers, written during the regularly scheduled class on Thursday October 19.
Final exam 48% A two-hour exam scheduled by the Registrar during Exam Period. The final exam includes material from the entire semester, in both multiple-choice and written- answer questions. The weight of the final exam may be partially reduced by accruing bonus points; consult Avenue for details about the bonus points. 










Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

Assignments: If you miss the Friday deadline for a written assignment, you may submit it to Avenue by 4:30 pm on the following Monday for 50% of the value of the assignment. If you submit an MSAF or other medical document (via your Faculty's Academic Advisors) for a written assignment, contact Dr. Anderson to arrange an alternate due date.

Quizzes: You may complete your quiz at any time during the 24-hour quiz period but not once the quiz period ends. Because the quiz portion of your grade is calculated on the best eight of ten quizzes, there is no penalty for missing one or two quizzes. MSAFs are not accepted for quizzes.

Midterm Test: If you submit an MSAF or other medical document (via your Faculty's Academic Advisors), you will have the option of writing an alternate test scheduled by the instructor, or of adding the 16% value of the test to the weight of the final exam.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at www.mcmaster.ca/academicintegrity

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at mcmaster.ca/msaf/. If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail sas@mcmaster.ca. For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:

Weeks 1 & 2 Introducing Linguistics: The Science of Language (Chapter 1) 
Weeks 2 - 5 Phonetics: The Sounds of Language (Chapter 2)
Weeks 6 - 10 Phonology: The Organization of Sounds (Chapter 3)
Weeks 11 & 12 Morphology: The Structure of Words (Chapter 4)






These dates are an estimate. Consult Avenue for a detailed schedule of topics, assignments, exercises, and specific readings.

Other Course Information:

In this course we will be using Avenue2Learn. Students should be aware that, when they access the electronic components of this course, private information such as first and last names, user names for the McMaster e-mail accounts, and program affiliation may become apparent to all other students in the same course. The available information is dependent on the technology used. Continuation in this course will be deemed consent to this disclosure. If you have any questions or concerns about such disclosure please discuss this with the course instructor.