Introduction to Linguistics
4.5 (271 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
2,087 students enrolled

Introduction to Linguistics

Learn the general properties that all languages in the entire world have.
4.5 (271 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
2,087 students enrolled
Created by Trevor Block
Last updated 2/2018
English [Auto-generated]
Current price: $27.99 Original price: $39.99 Discount: 30% off
5 hours left at this price!
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This course includes
  • 5 hours on-demand video
  • 6 articles
  • 5 downloadable resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
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What you'll learn
  • Understand the fundamentals of language
  • Understand sentence structure and word order of various languages.
  • Classify words into nouns, verbs, adjectives, prepositions, quantifiers, and adverbs.
  • Draw syntactic trees for simple sentences.
  • Understand the difference between entailment, implicature, presupposition, and contradiction.
  • Understand Gricean Maxims and when they are utilized or broken in conversation.
  • Identify the thematic role of words in a sentence.
  • Understand what affixes do and how they can change the meaning of words.
  • Identify morphological processes in languages across the world.
  • Understand the properties of vowels and consonants.
  • Read and write the International Phonetic Alphabet.
  • Understand how sounds interact with each other.
  • Use the features of sounds to create rules about how sounds change in different environments.
  • Attain the toolbox required to learn languages a little bit easier.
  • You will not need any background in linguistics to understand the content in this course.

In this course, we look at the five major pillars of analytic linguistics. These five pillars tell us about the general properties of language and help us talk about the similarities and differences in languages. 

The primary focus of the course will be teaching you the tools in our language toolbox using English. However, we will also look at different languages, such as Japanese, Marshalese, Khmer, Tagalog, and a few others.

The course primarily consists of videos, but I've included a couple practice exams that you can use to demonstrate your mastery of the course. 

Even if you're not interested in demonstrating mastery, the content provided is incredibly interesting for those who wish to learn languages in the future. The tools you learn here will help you understand that not all languages have the same sets of rules and features, and that you can use that knowledge to help you learn other languages even faster! We discuss how you make sounds, how you put sounds together, word orders, conjugation, and more!

Who this course is for:
  • This course is meant for anyone with an interest in language, languages, or the general properties of language. This is not a course that will teach you languages, however, you will learn bits and pieces of other languages through examples of the various processes we discuss in the course.
Course content
Expand all 23 lectures 04:50:28
+ Syllabus and Overview
2 lectures 13:23

The syllabus is attached.


We go over the general idea of each section in the entire course.

Preview 13:20
+ Syntax
3 lectures 56:25

We look at word order in languages, what grammar is, and how we use rules to generate sentences.

Word Order, Grammar, and Phrase Structure Rules

We look at nouns, verbs, adjectives, prepositions, and more, as well as what constituency is.

Word Classes and Constituency

We look at how we put trees together to make sentences, as well as adjuncts, complements, and specifiers.

Adjuncts, Complements, Specifiers, and Trees
+ Semantics
3 lectures 48:58

We look at semantic notions, such as ambiguity, entailment, paraphrase, and contradiction.

Ambiguity, Entailment, Paraphrase, and Contradictions

We look at the four maxims of speech, as well as implicature and presupposition.

Gricean Maxims, Implicature, and Presupposition

All words have thematic roles, so we learn to identify them.

Thematic Roles
+ Morphology
3 lectures 43:06

We distinguish between free and bound morphemes, and then have a discussion about affixes.

Free Morphemes, Bound Morphemes, and Affixes

We discuss the differences between derivational and inflectional morphemes, then take a look at other morphological processes.

Derivational Morphemes, Inflectional Morphemes, and other processes.

We look at different processes that govern word creation.

Word Creation
+ Phonetics
3 lectures 53:55
Consonants: Production and Transcription
Vowels: Production and Transcription
+ Phonology
4 lectures 01:14:27

We look at what phonemes are, show allophonic variation, and then discuss minimal pairs and complementary distribution.

Minimal Pairs, Phonemes, and Allophones

We look at syllable structure and the sonority hierarchy.

Syllables and Sonority Hierarchy.

We discuss phonological features.

Phonological Features

We look at phonological rules and how we derive them.

Phonological Rules and Derivation
+ Exams
4 lectures 00:09

The exam 1 is attached in the resource section.

Exam 1 - Morphology, Syntax, and Semantics

The solutions to exam 1 are attached in the resource section.

Exam 1 Solutions

The exam 2 is attached in the resource section.

Exam 2 - Phonetics and Phonology

The solutions to exam 2 are attached in the resource section.

Exam 2 Solutions
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