SPN 383N • Introduction to Sociolinguistics
2:00 PM-5:00 PM
Graduate-level introduction to sociolinguistics The course presents an overview of sociolinguistics, addressing the social dimensions of language and the linguistic dimensions of society. As such, the course centers on seminal readings that present the theoretical and methodological foundations of sociolinguistics; these are complemented by selected readings that reflect applications to the study of Spanish-speaking individuals and societies.
Students will be required to read and assimilate the core texts and to think critically on the focus research articles. Several components of the course will be graded, each described in turn. 40% Written assignments (2) Each student will select a set of focus articles for critical response; an acceptable response will satisfy the following criteria: i. Demonstrate that the student has carefully read two focus articles, e.g., by not simply summarizing but focusing on a central theme or point; ii. State clearly the main theme or point(s) of the response, and present ideas, observations, evidence, analyses, etc., that develop or support these. iii. Include a bibliography. 20% Presentations In pairs, students will select a focus article for a fifteen-minute presentation; the presentation should be accompanied by a handout or visual aid. 40% The final project (may take one of three forms). i. An annotated bibliography or a review of the literature focusing on one of the issues touched on in class; ii. A well-articulated proposal for future research; iii. A review of an approved book in the area of sociolinguistics (to be submitted for publication).
The course readings include chapters from sourcebooks in sociolinguistics (quantitative and qualitative; individual and social) and selected journal and compendia articles profiling Spanish-language individuals and societies.