Module options for level 3

by Jeanette Sakel

Students at level 2 will recently have received a Blackboard update about the module options fair, which takes place on Friday 7.3. from 2-4 in the afternoon – in 1R 26 (R-block is the modern building near the halls/centre for Sports where the Architecture Programme is located). 1R26 is right next to the downstairs café).

This event is your opportunity to meet the lectures and module leaders at level 3 in one space, and get to know the modules. You will, for example, be able to ask about assessment, and talk to current level 3 students to hear what they think about the modules they are studying. You will also be able to quiz Anna about the Language Project (i.e. the Undergraduate Dissertation), and look at a few examples of previous dissertations.

I would strongly encourage all of you to attend this fair. Also, it is a good idea to come well prepared. The following list and information about modules is also available to you via the webpage, but I’m listing it here for your convenience (please note that the Project Module sign-up sheet is not included).

Students on English Language and Linguistics have to choose 4 modules; students on English and English Language have to choose 2 modules (the remaining two modules will be on the “English” side):

UPLQ9L-30-3 Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages
UPNN35-30-3 Language Project (A brief project proposal form has to be submitted)
UPNQ9V-30-3 Creative Writing and the Self
UPNQ9P-30-3 Critical Discourse Analysis
UPNQ9Q-30-3 Language contact and bilingualism
UPNQ9N-30-3 The Cultural History of the English Language
UPNQ9W-30-3 Gender, (im)politeness and Power in Language

You must accept that if one module is under-subscribed, it may not run, in which case you will be assigned to an alternative module.

English Language & Linguistics Level 3 Module Descriptions

UPLQ9L-30-3 Teaching of English to speakers of other languages (TESOL)

Module leader: Rebecca Fong

Please note that this module requires full attendance of classes. The module materials consist of a dossier and detailed notes on Blackboard, yet these will only make sense when attending classes. The module does not use PowerPoint slides.

This module provides demonstrable skills for final year students who are thinking of going on to various forms of teaching after graduation. It explores the theory and practice of teaching English, particularly in the 1-1 context, with a concentration on the applied.

The module is divided into two halves. TB1 involves a significant language awareness component. Students use their language and linguistics skills to re-evaluate and “re-package” language from the point of view of “the teacher”. Here students analyse the form and function of a range of grammatical and lexico-grammatical concepts including tense and aspect, conditionals, passives, modal verbs, use of articles, phrasal verbs, and reported speech. Students will also learn to develop lesson plans using appropriate teaching and learning materials.

In TB2, students gain a practical understanding of all aspects of phonology for teaching purposes and develop their ability to teach vocabulary, the 4 skills and academic English. Learner needs and motivation will also be examined, as well as aspects of syllabus design and testing. Issues of classroom management will be addressed throughout the year. Students, as “trainee teachers” will be involved in working with a real non-native student, whom they find, to produce a “language learner profile” and deliver a 1-1 needs-related, tailor-made lesson to them.

Throughout the year, participants in this module will be expected to participate fully in input and discussions and to read widely, in their own time, from the TESOL literature. This is a vocational module which is very much applied, and as such attendance is absolutely fundamental to success on the module. Teaching will be done by demonstration and modelling, rather than by lecture and powerpoint.

Several graduates of this course have gone directly into TESOL teaching jobs around the world and others have completed externally-validated courses such as the RSA Cert TEFLA, Trinity TESOL, PGCE and then gone into employment. The course provides input, practice and assessment of TESOL in a 1-1 context, and university module validation of TESOL. It does not provide the external, publicly-recognised RSA/Trinity certificate. Completion of this module will, however, aid anyone wishing to go on and study on the RSA Certificate in potentially gaining a very good mark.

Assessment: Essay of 3000 words (70%) (Learner Profile) and a one and half hour exam (30%) (Grammar).

Pre Requisite:          None

UPNN35-30-3 Language Project                 

Module leader: Anna Piasecki

This 30 credit module gives you the opportunity to either develop and carry out an empirical research study of your choice, or to critically reflect on a work-based experience with an additional work-related project.. Possible topics are, for example, analyses of advertisements, gendered talk, the language of magazines and newspapers, issues in bilingualism or in teaching English as a second or foreign language. In addition, the project provides you with the opportunity to practice using computational tools whenever applicable.

All projects will be supervised by a designated member of staff, whose expertise will most likely fall into the chosen topic area. In addition, you will be offered monthly workshops and group-sessions during TB1. These are set up to help you structure your project, engage in discussions with others working in similar areas and to monitor your progress.

Assessment: At the end of TB1 you will submit a 500 word topic proposal (10%). At the end of TB2 you will hand in either (a) an extended essay, based on a research project of 9000 words; or (b) a report about a topic in Language and Linguistics, linked to your work experience (6000 words), alongside a self-reflective diary and evaluation of this work experience (in terms of language; 3000 words). Both word counts exclude appendices and references (90%)

Please complete the project proposal form attached at the end of this document and submit it to the module leader (Anna Piasecki) by Friday 11th of April 2014.

Pre Requisites:        None

UPNQ9V-30-3 Creative Writing and the Self

Module leader: Catherine Rosenberg

This module will be of interest to students who wish to explore the potential of creative writing for their own self development.  We will focus in particular on personal identity, and on how we realise ourselves through our behaviour and discourse.  As part of this, we will explore the concept of narrative identity, a term used to refer to the stories people construct and tell about themselves to define who they are for themselves and for others.  There will be a significant element of personal reflection and opportunities to engage in creative writing and thinking.

You will also have the opportunity for a detailed exploration of the way in which you yourself use narrative: you will be asked to record one of your own stories in a small group of your own choice and then for your coursework you will analyse this from different angles: what have you said, and how have you communicated this?  This unique opportunity to carry out narrative analysis of your own story frequently results in students seeing their stories in a different way and reaching a better understanding of themselves and their story in the process.  The module should appeal to those who are interested in exploring their creative writing skills and self expression through discussion and writing. 

Assessment: A one and a half hour seen examination on theoretical aspects of the module (25%) and a single piece of written coursework of 4500 words in which students record, transcribe and analyse a personal narrative (75%).

Pre Requisites: None

UPNQ9P-30-3 Critical Discourse Analysis

Module leader: Jonathan Charteris-Black

This module introduces students to some critical and discourse theories that account for relationships between the linguistic features of texts and the social and cultural contexts of their production. It illustrates the role of language in ideologically motivated representation of groups in texts – especially those concerning social issues such as immigration, gender, political persuasion and leadership, environmental issues and religion.

The emphasis will be combining some of the theoretical approaches in critical and cultural theory that have originated in European scholarship with the more empirical tradition for text analysis that has developed in Anglo-American linguistics. Students will attempt to evaluate some of the different methods that have been developed for the critical analysis of ideologies and power relations for which there is linguistic evidence in texts. The module will consider how some existing approaches to text analysis such as text patterns; genre analysis, classical rhetorical approaches and metaphor analysis may be adapted to provide a more ‘critical’ perspective.

Assessment:  a three hour examination  (40%) and an essay of approximately 3,500 words (60%).

Pre-requisites: None


UPNQ9N-30-3 The Cultural History of the English Language

Module leader: Richard Coates

This module examines the relation between the various dialects of English over a period of a thousand years, the relation between English and competitor languages in the British Isles, the role of English as a second language and as an imperial language, and the position of English in relation to the great cultural movements of the second millennium. It also covers sociolinguistic aspects of literacy and education, and provides an understanding of the changes which English has undergone in the light of general theories of language change.

The module covers themes, notably language standardization, which should be of special interest to students considering a career in education or publishing, as well as to those are keen on understanding the roles of language in history and cultural change.

Assessment:  an essay of approximately 2000 words (25%) and one 2-hour exam (25%) at the end of TB1; an essay of approximately 3000 words (50%) at the end of TB2.

Pre Requisites:   None

UPNQ9Q-30-3 Language contact and bilingualism

Module Leader: Jeanette Sakel

This module looks at the sociolinguistics of language contact and bilingualism. We will also discuss some structural changes to languages in contact, and analyse the way bilinguals’ speech differs from that of monolinguals. The first part of the module (TB1) introduces the key terms in this area of study and TB2 goes into more detail with specific scenarios and practical issues surrounding language contact and bilingualism.

We will study different types of outcomes of contact (code switching, lexical borrowing, grammatical borrowing, etc.) and contact situations (linguistic areas, pidgins, creoles, mixed languages), as well as the processes involved when languages ‘meet’, such as in second language acquisition and language attrition.

The module is practically oriented, and you will spend some time conducting a small-scale empirical study into a relevant phenomenon (there will be a list of possible topics, but you can also tailor your own in discussion with the module leader). There is amble space for peer-support, group discussions and practical applications of the skills acquired in the module.

Assessment: an essay of 3,000 words 40% TB1   a three-hour exam 60% TB2.

Pre Requisites: None


UPNQ9W-30-3 Gender, (im)politeness and Power in Language

Module leader: Kate Beeching

The aim of this module is to examine gender, (im)politeness and power focusing on the role discourse plays here. It offers a comprehensive approach to the study of discourse bringing together three central concepts and drawing on cutting edge research. The focus in on contemporary developments but this will be set against important earlier contributions to the field. The module will also provide the students with the necessary skills for analysing discourse and to this end a number of theoretical frameworks including Post-Structuralist discourse analysis, Conversation Analysis, Critical Discourse Analysis and Ethnography of Speaking will be discussed. We will look at talk in different public and private contexts and at the different ways this may be constructed, perceived and indexed as ‘gendered’ or ‘(im)polite’. The interrelationship with the concept of power and power asymmetries will also be explored. We pay particular attention to the context of interactions.

Assessment: a one-hour exam 25% TB1   an essay of 4,000 words 75% TB2.

Pre Requisites: None


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