Issues in Syntax

The American College of Greece

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Issues in Syntax

  • Host University

    The American College of Greece

  • Location

    Athens, Greece

  • Area of Study

    English, Linguistics

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    WP 1010 Introduction to Academic Writing
    WP 1111 Integrated Academic Writing and Ethics
    EN 2213 The Structure of the English Language
    EN 2216 Introduction to Language 

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • US Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Introduction to key issues of syntactic description of English and syntactic theory and argumentation through analysis of natural language data, testing of hypotheses and evaluation of results.

    This course introduces students to the study of sentence structure. Looking at data from a wide range of languages, we will examine key issues in syntax, such as constituency structure, phrase structure rules and movement. Relevant theoretical work will be outlined and discussed and students will have the opportunity to analyse and relate data to theory in a principled manner.They will also be encouraged to evaluate theoretical claims in the light of the observations drawn. As such, students will become familiar with the empirical method and will learn the important role of description in supporting and testing theoretical claims.

    Upon successful completion of this course, the student should be able to:
    1. Analyze and interpret data from English and other languages;
    2. Explain the complexity of structure and justify counterexamples;
    3. Construct phrase-structure markers, the purpose of which is to provide a comprehensive representation of syntactic constituency and operations;
    4. Describe, evaluate and explain the basic theoretical constructs underlying formal linguistic theory;
    5. Develop critical thinking and problem solving skills through: i) analysis and explanation of cross-linguistic data as well as, ii) familiarization with relevant field-related literature;
    6. Evaluate and discuss orally (a) pre-approved article(s).

    In congruence with the teaching and learning strategy of the college, the following tools are used:
    • Lectures, class discussions, workshop-style pair work and group work during class meetings; 
    • Formative exercises and online learning tasks through the Blackboard online tools designed to help students acquire confidence and benefit from independent study;
    • Additional print and audiovisual educational material posted on the Blackboard course template;
    • Timely instructor feedback on assignments;
    • Other relevant educational material placed on reserve in the library;
    • Individualized assistance during office hours for further discussion of lecture material, additional reading, assignments and examinations;
    • Close collaboration with the Library and SASS to encourage students’ effective use of academic support services. 


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