Faculty of Arts


Introduction to Linguistics


Course overview

LINGUISTICS 100 is your introduction to the major subfields of Linguistics: phonetics and phonology, morphology, syntax and semantics and the scientific methodology used to describe them.

The human capacity for language makes us unique in the animal world. Linguists seek to explain what exactly "language" is, what its properties are and which of them are universal. 

Linguistics as a discipline is a relatively recent phenomenon, but records show that our capacity for language has occupied the thoughts of scholars for thousands of years. Like the ancients, modern linguists also want to know how language developed, how it has evolved and why only humans?

Specialists in the various subfields of Linguistics deal with these questions on a daily basis. However, unlike the ancients, linguists apply scientific principles to data to compare and weigh evidence, draw conclusions, formulate and refute theories.

Note though that general linguistic knowledge is not the preserve of academia. In fact it has a wide range of applications outside the academic environment in areas as diverse as speech therapy, artificial speech synthesis, constructed languages, language forensics, law interpretation, language teaching, writing, editing and publishing.


Coursework + exam

Availability 2021

Semester 1, repeated Semester 2


Lecturer(s) Dr Keith Montgomery


Fromkin, V et al. An Introduction to Language (8th or 9th ed.), Melbourne: Cengage Learning. 2013.


Coursework + exam


LINGUIST 100: 15.0 points



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