Language Structure and Acquisition

Learning Activities.

Complete the following questions, either on this or a separate document, and submit it to the link provided on Blackboard in Week 8 Learning Activities.

Short Answer

1. List and define the five basic elements of language. (20 points)

2. Translate the following passage from IPA into standard English. (20 points)

3. Choose one of the linguistic or acquisitioned theories that we’ve studied in class (or related topics, something that a classmate presented on in Week 6), describe it in detail, and discuss its relevance to the course material. For example, describe and briefly analyze the famous debate between Noam Chomsky and B. F. Skinner over behaviorism and innateness. Please do not write about the topic on which you also presented. (20 points)

4. Discuss the importance of linguistic knowledge as it may make an impact on the use of language in your chosen (or projected) profession. Consider all forms of language use (listening, speaking, reading and writing) in your response. For example, if you are going into teaching or currently a teacher, why is it important for you to understand the way language is used, acquired, learned, etc.? (20 points)


In two essays of 1-2 pages each, answer the following questions.

1. What is it that we “learn” when we learn a language? Consider primary and/or second language acquisition and consider non-verbal forms of language such as ASL. You may wish to discuss studies with other animals, such as Bonobo Chimpanzees, who, some scientists claim, may be able to “learn” a language. Computer programs that replicate or produce speech, “ talk” to each other, etc., also constitute a valid subject. Is language unique to human beings? Explain what you mean by this. (35 points)

2. How is language related to culture and identity? Consider a variety of areas of language that are culturally inflected or which give evidence to linguistic and cultural markers. What are the implications for those who teach or communicate with with second language learners and speakers? The implications for the second language speakers and learners themselves? Your essay should include at least one example of language use related to cultural identity. (35 points)

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