LT5431 - Functional Approaches to Syntax

Offering Academic Unit
Department of Linguistics and Translation
Credit Units
Course Duration
One Semester
Course Offering Term*:
Semester B 2019/20

* The offering term is subject to change without prior notice
Course Aims

This course is designed to give a general survey of current syntactic theories, with a special emphasis on functional approaches to syntax. It aims to explore the differences between ‘formal’ and ‘functional’ paradigms for syntactic analysis, with a thorough discussion of their 1) theoretical premises, 2) research concerns, 3) data collection 4) analytical methodology, and 5) explanatory principles. The class will gradually prepare students to master the functional theories from more assessable to more challenging approaches. The class will first lay a foundation by focusing on the form-function associations manifested in the English grammar and then progress to introduce a variety of functional explanatory mechanisms with illustrations from a wide range of languages. The ultimate goal of this class is to familiarize students with a wide spectrum of contemporary syntactic theories that take grammar as coding devices for coherent communication. “Syntax codes what people do the most.” – T. Givon.

Assessment (Indicative only, please check the detailed course information)

Continuous Assessment: 100%
Detailed Course Information


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Department of Linguistics and Translation