Languages of Australia and the Pacific

University of Newcastle

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Languages of Australia and the Pacific

  • Host University

    University of Newcastle

  • Location

    Newcastle, Australia

  • Area of Study

    Australian Culture, Finnish, Indigenous Languages, Indigenous Studies, Linguistics, Maori, Multicultural Studies, Pacific Studies

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    LING1111 and LING1112

  • 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

  • Host University Units

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    This course explores the indigenous languages, language families, and language types found in Australia, New Guinea, island southeast Asia and the Pacific. It introduces the basic principles of linguistic typology, using languages of the Australia-Pacific region to illustrate general typological phenomena, and explores the structural nature of the languages of the Australia-Pacific region. Students will learn and practise methods of typological analysis.
    1. Describe the distribution of the indigenous language families and language types of Australia and the Pacific region.
    2. Describe the key concepts and principles of linguistic typology.
    3. Describe the main typological characteristics of the indigenous language types of Australia and the Pacific region.
    4. Apply principles of typological analysis
    The course explores the indigenous languages of Australia, New Guinea, island southeast Asia and the Pacific. Topics include:
    • Phylogenetic and geographic distribution of the Australian, Austronesian and Papuan language families
    • Word order typology, including clause order, genitive noun order, and right-headed vs left-headed typology
    • Noun typology, including noun classes and nominal classification systems, and possession
    • The typology of tense, aspect, modality and evidentiality
    • The typological characteristics of Australian Aboriginal languages
    • The typological characteristics of Austronesian languages
    • The typological characteristics of Papuan languages
    • Case studies of one Australian, one Austronesian, and one Papuan language
    • Language endangerment in Australia and the Pacific
    • Linguistic fieldwork and documentation practice in Australia and the Pacific
    Report: Research Project Report / Essay
    Presentation: Oral Presentation of Research Proposal
    Written Assignment: Written Assignments

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.