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LINGUIST List 16.2676

Fri Sep 16 2005

FYI: Roger W. Shuy; New Master's Lang & Communication

Editor for this issue: Svetlana Aksenova <svetlanalinguistlist.org>

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        1.    ann sawyer, Roger W. Shuy in Online Chat November 7
        2.    Samantha Candon, New Master's Degree in Language and Communication

Message 1: Roger W. Shuy in Online Chat November 7
Date: 12-Sep-2005
From: ann sawyer <sawyerlinguistlist.org>
Subject: Roger W. Shuy in Online Chat November 7

Announcing online chat with Roger W. Shuy, forensic linguistics expert,
professor, and author of numerous books including his latest "Creating
Language Crimes: How Law Enforcement Uses (and Misuses) Language." He will join
us in an online chat on Nov 7, 2005, 7 PM Pacific (GMT -7).The topic of the chat
is the evolution of language. For more details, please see


The event is free. All are invited.

Wordsmith.org - the magic of words

Linguistic Field(s): Forensic Linguistics
Message 2: New Master's Degree in Language and Communication
Date: 13-Sep-2005
From: Samantha Candon <sd8georgetown.edu>
Subject: New Master's Degree in Language and Communication

The Linguistics Department at Georgetown University will offer a Master of
Arts Degree in Language and Communication; anticipated starting date is
Fall 2006. The MALC will prepare students to use linguistics, especially
the areas of discourse analysis (including narrative analysis and cross
cultural communication) sociolinguistics, and pragmatics in the workforce.
We envision a broad range of applications of the MALC in fields such as
human resources, mediation and arbitration, technical and scientific
writing, management, international communication, diversity training,
counseling, advertising, marketing, usability testing, public relations,
and media/ public opinion research. We will offer broad training in the
analysis of language and communication, with possible foci on the following:

Language and health care: analysis/training/consulting in
doctor/patient communications; health writing; Discourse of medicine,
science and health; narratives of illness and identity change; linguistic
accommodation between expert and client; language of agency and responsibility

Language and Law: teaching legal writing (training international
lawyers to become 'fluent' writers in American legal genres), interpreting
the complex language of statutes and contracts; analyzing ambiguity and
presuppositions (e.g., in testimony or in cross-examination); elucidation
of attitudes toward language in legal proceedings; linguistic analysis (of
dialect features, writing or speaking style) in criminal investigations

Language and Business: the role of culture, gender, age, ethnicity, and
social class in office communication and commerical transactions; group
dynamics in meetings; processes of negotiation and decision-making;
managing and interpreting focus groups; the dynamics of interviewing;
marketing/branding commercial and social products

The study of how we use language to communicate in ways that interact with,
and change, the external world, are studied in three subfields within
Linguistics: Sociolinguistics, Discourse analysis, Pragmatics.

Sociolinguistics is concerned with language in social and cultural
context, especially how people with different social identities (e.g.
gender, age, race, ethnicity, class) speak and how their speech changes in
different situations. Some of the issues addressed are how dialects (ways
of pronouncing words, choice of words, patterns of words) cluster together
to form personal styles of speech; why people from different communities or
cultures can misunderstand what is meant, said and done based on the
different ways they use language.

Discourse analysis focuses on language use 'above' the sentence (in
text) and 'beyond' the sentence (in context). This perspective analyzes
texts and contexts from a wide array of sites in everyday life, ranging,
for example, from informal conversations among friends to doctor/patient
interactions, office documents (memos, minutes), and televised political
debates. Some of the issues addressed are the following: how texts build
cohesion (the word and meaning relationships that 'hold' a text together)
and coherence (the overall unity, topic, and message); how texts that tell
a story (a narrative) differ from those that describe something, provide an
explanation or list a set of instructions.

Pragmatics focuses on how speakers use language to present information
and how hearers draw inferences from what is said about the speaker's
communicative intention. Some of the issues addressed are how particular
ways of speaking (including the choice of words, sentence forms, and
prosody (intonation, rhythm, pitch)) convey subtle features of messages;
how language conveys 'who did what, when, where, why, and how;' how we use
language to accomplish 'speech acts' (e.g. apologies, declarations,
requests, threats) that bring us closer together or take us further apart.

The MALC will provide students with general skills in sociolinguistics,
discourse analysis and pragmatics and teach them how to use these skills to
resolve concrete problems in workplace settings, institutions and
professions that depend largely upon language to accomplish their goals.
The foundation for the skills will be acquired through 4 Required courses;
the use of the skills will be developed through Electives (see courses below).

The MALC has two different options for completion:

8 courses (24 credits) plus Master's Thesis
10 courses (30 credits)

Students will take 8- 10 courses depending on which option is pursued.
Other than the first required course, there is flexibility in all course


Ling 401 General Linguistics
3 additional courses
Possibilities include: Ling 383 Language and social life; Ling 481
Speech acts; Ling 482 Pragmatics; Ling 483 Discourse: Narrative; Ling 484
Discourse: Conversation; Ling 496 Cross/Intercultural communication; Ling
571 Sociolinguistic Field Methods


4- 6 courses (depending on Master's Thesis option)
Possibilities include: Ling 367 Computational Tools for Linguists; Ling
385 Multimodal discourse; Ling 447American Dialects; Ling 468 Corpus
Linguistics; Ling 487 Linguistics in the professions; Ling 499 Language and
the internet; Ling 552 Linguistics and writing; Ling 580 Approaches to
discourse analysis; Ling 582 Variation analysis; Ling 583 Ethnography of
communication; Ling 584 Statistics for Linguists; Ling 680 Language and
law; Ling 682 Language and aging; Ling 684 Language and gender; Ling 687
Language and clinical practice; Ling 688 Language and the media

Students may complete the course work for the MALC (depending on choice of
curricular option and number of courses per semester) in one academic year.

Although the MALC has no language requirement, students wishing to enhance
their skills in a language other than English are able to audit
undergraduate language courses (with the proviso that they attend regularly
and participate as active class members).

In addition to courses, we will provide at least one workshop and lecture
per semester in areas relevant to the interests of the current MALC
students. We will guarantee that some of the many talks in our regular
Department of Linguistics Speaker Series are on topics interesting and
accessible to the MALC students. All students may also use the resources of
the MBNA Career Center (http://careerweb.georgetown.edu/) for career
counseling and advice, to pursue internships, and to search for
post-graduate employment.

Linguistic Field(s): Discourse Analysis

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