LINGS203-19B (HAM)

Language, Society and Culture

15 Points

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Division of Arts Law Psychology & Social Sciences
School of Arts
General and Applied Linguistics

Staff

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Convenor(s)

Lecturer(s)

Administrator(s)

: vanessa.mclean@waikato.ac.nz

Placement Coordinator(s)

Tutor(s)

Student Representative(s)

Lab Technician(s)

Librarian(s)

: anne.ferrier-watson@waikato.ac.nz

You can contact staff by:

  • Calling +64 7 838 4466 select option 1, then enter the extension.
  • Extensions starting with 4, 5, 9 or 3 can also be direct dialled:
    • For extensions starting with 4: dial +64 7 838 extension.
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    • For extensions starting with 3: dial +64 7 2620 + the last 3 digits of the extension e.g. 3123 = +64 7 262 0123.
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Paper Description

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This paper is targeted at students with an introductory level of Anthropology and/or Linguistics. Students will be introduced to relevant theoretical concepts and analytical tools for understanding aspects of the way that language both reflects, and is used to construct social and cultural identity and practices. Students will look at examples of linguistic and anthropological research, and have the opportunity to experience the process of collecting and analyzing related data both in class and through assessment.
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Paper Structure

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  • Section One: Language, Society and Culture

An introduction to the nature of language and its relationship to the human mind and to culture.

  • Section Two: Language and meaning

Investigations into the nature of symbols (semiotics) and meaning (semantics); categorization systems including natural folk taxonomies, colour and kinship terminology, and systems of person, place and time in different languages.

  • Section Three: Investigating language as a cultural practice

Ethical, methodological, and practical issues in language/culture research.
Investigations into the multiple functions of language in interaction, the way that language encodes cultural understandings, and the role language plays in cultural practices.

  • Section Four: Language and prehistory

The methodology and findings of comparative/historical linguistics, with a focus on the Austronesian language family and Proto-Oceanic pre-history.

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Learning Outcomes

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Students who successfully complete the course should be able to:

  • draw on anthropological linguistic understandings to explore in detail the relationship between language, thought, and human behaviour
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  • identify instances of folk classification, and apply understandings of categorisation systems and prototype theory (located within the study of semiotics and semantics) to explore and interpret communicative behaviours among diverse peoples
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  • investigate and recognise differences in the use of language in particular social and cultural contexts, including demonstrating an awareness of diverse systems of time, place and person (located broadly within the study of deixis)
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  • appreciate our anthropological and linguistic research inheritance within the Pacific region, and the impact this has had on knowledge generation
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  • apply basic techniques of language documentation, including grammatical and lexical elicitation, and ethnographic interviewing
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  • employ the Ethnography of Communication frame to make observations about their own linguistic and cultural behaviour
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  • become aware of the relationship between languages and the types of evidence used by researchers to reconstruct prehistory
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  • employ the Comparative Method to analyse and interpret data sets from Pacific languages
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Assessment

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This paper is assessed internally. The final piece of assessment is due during the examination period.
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Assessment Components

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The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0. There is no final exam. The final exam makes up 0% of the overall mark.

The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0 or 0:0, whichever is more favourable for the student. The final exam makes up either 0% or 0% of the overall mark.

Component DescriptionDue Date TimePercentage of overall markSubmission MethodCompulsory
1. Task 1 - Language & Culture
16 Jul 2019
12:00 AM
0
  • In Class: In Lecture
2. Task 2 - Language & Meaning
23 Jul 2019
4:30 PM
0
  • In Class: In Lecture
3. Task 3 - Language & Space
6 Aug 2019
4:30 PM
0
  • In Class: In Lecture
4. Task 4 - Naming
13 Aug 2019
9:00 AM
0
  • In Class: In Lecture
5. Term 1 Portfolio
22 Aug 2019
12:00 AM
50
  • Hand-in: Assignment Box
6. Term 2 Research Report
22 Oct 2019
4:30 PM
40
  • Hand-in: Assignment Box
7. In-Class Test - Comparative Method
11 Oct 2019
11:00 AM
10
  • In Class: In Lecture
Assessment Total:     100    
Failing to complete a compulsory assessment component of a paper will result in an IC grade
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Required and Recommended Readings

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Required Readings

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Students will be assigned readings to accompany the various lecture topics throughout the course. These materials will be listed in the Waikato Reading List for this paper, and available through the library.

Each week, one or two readings will be specified as Required and other readings will be identified as Recommended to support learning.

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Online Support

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There is an online Moodle community for this course. Lecture presentations, in-class and take-home exercises, assessment details, a link to the Waikato Reading List for this paper, important dates, and a link to the Waikato Paper Outline for this paper are all available from this site.
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Workload

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15 points of a full year programme (120 points).
This paper involves three contact hours per week, supported by reading and preparation of formal assessment. In total you should expect to spend up to 10 hours per week working on this paper.
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Linkages to Other Papers

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Prerequisite(s)

Corequisite(s)

Equivalent(s)

Restriction(s)

Restricted papers: LING203

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