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LINGUIST 1AA3 Intro: Ling II

Academic Year: Fall 2015

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Dr. Magda Stroinska


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 501

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 27067


Office Hours: Monday & Wednesday 3:45-4:30PM

Course Objectives:

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

  • analyze the sentence structures of English and of other languages
  • evaluate evidence for various structural analyses of sentences
  • understand the systematic ways in which languages assign meaning to words and sentences
  • recognize the primary social factors that contribute to language variation 


Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

  • O'Grady, W. and J. Archibald. Contemporary Linguistic Analysis: An Introduction. Toronto: Pearson, 2016 (8th edition).
  • Merrells, T. and A. Moro. Study Guide to accompany Contemporary Linguistic Analysis. Toronto: Pearson, 2016 (8th edition).
  • Avenue to Learn.

Method of Assessment:

Ten weekly quizzes 20%

Completed on Avenue by 11:59 p.m. each Wednesday beginning September 16.                                                                        Each quiz is worth 2.5%. Your grade is calculated from your best eight of ten scores.

Midterm Test            35%

A 45-minute test written during the scheduled lecture period on Wednesday, October 21.

Final exam                45%

Scheduled by the Registrar during Exam Period.  The final exam includes material from the entire semester.  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:

Quizzes:  Quizzes may not be completed after the weekly due date.  MSAFs are not accepted for quizzes.

Missed Midterm: Midterm exams for which the instructor receives an MSAF or other medical document (via the office of the Dean of your Faculty) have their value added to the value 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

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 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 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 – 5     Syntax: The Structure of Sentences (Chapter 5)

Weeks 6 - 8     Semantics:  How Languages Mean Things (Chapter 6)

Week 9 – 10     Classification of Languages and Aboriginal Languages of Canada (Chapter 7 & 9)

Week 11           Language Acquisition: How Children & Adults Learn Language (Chapters 10 & 11)

Week 12          Language in Social Contexts (Chapter 14)

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