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APLNG 597 Mixed Methods Cross-Cultural Comparisons

This course covers theory and method in conducting cross-cultural comparisons, with an emphasis on the principled integration of qualitative and quantitative approaches at successive stages of research design, data collection, and analysis.  After reading several examples of mixed methods cross-cultural studies from across the social science disciplines (education, health sciences, sociology, anthropology, and cross-cultural psychology), we carefully examine how specific qualitative methods can be paired with specific quantitative methods to maximize insight into local cultural logics and group level dynamics. Particular attention will be paid to language issues in data collection, translation of instruments and interviews, and the language(s) of data analysis.

APLNG 593 Experimental Methods in Language Research

In the research track of the curriculum this course provides the basic introduction to experimental, quantitative research.  (Companion courses in qualitative methods are also offered regularly by the department).  In this vein the course introduces the student in step-by-step fashion to the range of data elicitation methods commonly used in applied linguistics and second language acquisition, the design and development of a research project, beginning with the identification of a research question, then considering a variety of research methods in applied linguistics, sampling issues, effective research designs, and basic statistical skills.  In addition to regular exercises focused on data elicitation techniques, students choose some research question that interests them  and then design a research proposal that tests some aspect of this question.  The latter third of the course is devoted to the basic statistical knowledge necessary to appreciate the quantitative literature in applied linguistics and to design a quantitative project.  No knowledge of particular statistical packages is necessary.


APLNG 583 Language Assessment

This course is designed as both a theoretical treatment of language testing and a practical “hands-on” introduction to developing and using language tests. The course lays the theoretical foundation for language testing on current conceptions of language proficiency as communicative ability and on classical and modern psychometric techniques. Practical applications explore how to select, develop, administer, and analyze both norm-referenced and criterion-referenced instruments in both research and teaching. Students will also have practice in interpreting and reporting scores.


APLNG 512   Language and Lifespan Development

In this course we examine the psychology of the language learner from a developmental perspective.   Specifically, we will examine the psychosocial and cognitive factors that influence second language acquisition from late adolescence through adulthood.   Such factors include learner aptitude, motivation, personality, cognitive and emotional maturation, learning styles, identity development, cultural beliefs, etc.  The focus is on language learners across the lifespan in both formal settings (such as language classrooms) and informal settings (associated with sojourning and immigration).   We will also consider the mechanisms and circumstances of first- and second- language attrition in both younger and older multilinguals.


APLNG 210 The Ecology of Global English

Having developed since the fifth century in the British Isles, English has now become a global language. This course addresses three questions: What are the factors that account for the spread of English across the globe?  How has English developed and changed as a result of this growth?  What are the sounds and meanings of these many Englishes?  After acquiring some basic tools of linguistic analysis—including a basic introduction to phonology, morphology, syntax, lexis, and pragmatics, students will examine 12 varieties of spoken English ranging from varieties spoken in “inner circle” countries such as Great Britain (Received British, Scots), the USA (General, Southern, African American vernacular), Australia (Standard Australian English); varieties spoken in “outer circle” countries such as South Asia (Philippine, Indian, Sri Lankan Englishes) and Africa (Nigerian and Black South African English); and varieties spoken in “expanding circle” countries (Hong Kong English and Chinese English).


APLNG 083 The Language and Culture of American Medicine

The practice of medicine is its own culture and involves its own language.  Clinical practice includes particular ways of speaking (e.g. describing the body, taking a history, communicating a diagnosis, presenting a treatment plan), writing (e.g. charting, prescribing, reporting to insurers), and hearing and telling stories (interpreting the patient’s narrative, presenting a clinical case).  In essence, medical vocabulary and medical discourse mediate a unique cultural world with its own logic and semiotics. This course takes modern medicine as a unique culture in American society and examines it via key concepts from linguistic anthropology and sociolinguistics. In learning and applying these concepts, students work with video and textual materials from clinical medicine, medical research, and the larger arena of public policy and public health.

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