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LINGUIST 3LA3 Second Language Acquisition (C01)

Academic Year: Fall 2018

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: D

Instructor: Dr. Wendy D'Angelo


Office: Togo Salmon Hall 504

Phone: 905-525-9140 x 24780

Office Hours: Thursday 12:30-1:30 (Please email for appointment)

Course Objectives:

This course offers insight into questions about the learning of additional languages. It introduces the main theoretical approaches and empirical methods in second language acquisition (SLA) research. Topics will include features of language learners and their learning processes (e.g. age, cross-linguistic influences), individual influences on language development (e.g. motivation, aptitude) and social dimensions (e.g. identity). Students will be encouraged to reflect critically on their own experiences as language learners and on the experiences of others drawn upon in the text and in supporting materials.

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

1. Explain and apply basic concepts and issues in the field of second language acquisition (SLA)

2. Recognize and describe some key SLA theories and related methodological approaches

3. Evaluate/Apply SLA research collaboratively through small scale instructor guided tasks throughout the course and through a final collaborative project

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

Hummel, Kristen M.,  Introducing Second Language Acquisition: Perspectives and Practices. West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons, 2014.

Method of Assessment:

Tests (x3): 70% [Sept 27, Nov 1, Nov 22]

Group Exercises (x 3):10% [Sept 25, Oct 30, Nov 20] 

Mini Reflections (x8): 10%

Final Project [collaborative] (x1): 10% [due on December 10]

Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

In the event of missed classes, please catch up on notes with a classmate. You should have the contact information of at least two peers in your class. Lecture slides are provided on Avenue. If you miss a lecture, please catch up on missed work by reaching out to a classmate, reading the lecture slides on Avenue and reading the assigned sections of the textbook as outlined on the syllabus. 

Mini Reflections: Students are permitted to miss one mini reflection without penalty. Please submit an MSAF for any additional missed reflections. NB: Students shall not submit one MSAF for multiple pieces of work). 

Tests: Please see your academic advisor in the event of a missed test. An electronic MSAF will not suffice for missed tests where no prior accommodations have been sought by the student (i.e., SAS/religious observance). Arrangements will be made for a make up test once permission has been granted to the student. 

Group Exercises: Please submit an MSAF for one missed group work assignment. Students who miss a group work assignment shall submit an assignment on a similar topic assigned by the instructor once permission has been granted.

Final Project due on Monday December 10th: Late submissions are subject to a 10% penalty per calendar day (weekday or weekend) up to a maximum of three days after which the assignment will no longer be accepted.


SAS and Religious Observances:

Time extensions without penalty are provided only to students with documentation from SAS or with accommodation for religious observances.

SAS documentation must be presented to the instructor from SAS before the assignment/test in question is due. As such, students using SAS should have their accommodations in place at the onset of the course. Accommodation will not be granted without digital documentation from SAS. SAS students who need extra time on tests/assignments/ alternative dates must arrange for these accommodations within a reasonable time (no more than 5 days from the original date of the assignment) through SAS and book to write in the SAS testing centre. 

Requests for accommodation for religious observance must be presented to the instructor in writing (via email) by no later than Monday September 10, 2018. A two day maximum extension shall be granted on the basis of religious observance.

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:


Tuesday (50 min)

Thursday (1hr 40 min)



Chapters 1 (Intro) and 2

Chapters 1 (Intro) and 2


Chapter 3

Chapter 3


Chapter 4

Chapter 4


Group Exercise 1 (Ch. 2,3,4)

TEST 1 (Ch. 2,3,4)



Chapter 5

Chapter 5






Chapter 6

Chapter 6


Chapter 7


Chapter 7



Group Exercise 2 (Ch. 5,6,7)


TEST 2 (Ch. 5,6,7)




Chapter 8

Chapter 8



Chapter 9

Chapter 9 



Group Exercise 3 (Ch. 8,9)

TEST 3 (Ch. 8,9)


Start work on final project in class - topics provided by instructor today

Continue work on final project in class



Guest Lecture 

(Bonus Marks available)

No classes

Exam period begins today

Other Course Information:

The instructor reserves the right to alter this document.