LING 690: Generative Phonology

LING 690-DL2: Generative Phonology
(Fall 2020)

04:30 PM to 07:10 PM R


View in the schedule of classes

Section Information for Fall 2020

"In practice, the analysis of phonological universals turns out to be a rather simple-minded and blunt enterprise."

(Steiner, George. 1975. After Babel . London: Oxford University Press. pg. 96.)

The above quote typifies the viewpoint of someone who is not even marginally aware of generative grammar and current phonological theory. In this class we will challenge this viewpoint and discover that phonological theory is an exciting and dynamic field of study. The search for phonological universals provides us with important insights not just about the human mouth, but also about the human mind.

The world is full of sounds, and we use just a small subset of these for human language. But even though different languages like English and Zulu and Chinese use different sets of sounds, they share many more sound patterns than what we may first believe. This course is an introduction to the theoretical study of sound systems. The focus of the class is on the analysis of phonological data within a linguistically principled framework. Students will practice solving phonological problems from a wide variety of languages. We will explore the nature of this shared knowledge that all humans have about their language sound systems.


LING 690 DL1 is a distance education section that meets synchronously. Students should expect to be online during the days and times scheduled.

Course Information from the University Catalog

Credits: 3

Sound systems of English and other languages from the perspective of phonological theory. Topics include articulatory phonetics, distinctive features, nature of phonological representations and processes, rule ordering, abstractness, role of external evidence, and nonlinear phonology. May not be repeated for credit.
Registration Restrictions:

Enrollment limited to students with a class of Advanced to Candidacy, Graduate, Non-Degree or Senior Plus.

Enrollment is limited to Graduate, Non-Degree or Undergraduate level students.

Students in a Non-Degree Undergraduate degree may not enroll.

Schedule Type: Lecture
This course is graded on the Graduate Regular scale.

The University Catalog is the authoritative source for information on courses. The Schedule of Classes is the authoritative source for information on classes scheduled for this semester. See the Schedule for the most up-to-date information and see Patriot web to register for classes.