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Living Language: Science and Society

The first University-wide course in Language Sciences, Living Language:  Science and Society, will be offered in September, 2018.  It will be cross-listed as APSC 402, ASTU 402, FRST 402, LFS 402, LLED 402, and PHAR 402, and taught by Professors Janet Werker (Psychology) and Mark Turin (Anthropology, First Nations and Endangered Languages).

This course will allow students to examine what they have learned in their major field of study and consider (1) how language has made possible the development of that area of study and (2) how they can use a more advanced knowledge of language to guide their own work in that area.

Through language, humans:

  • establish complex social and political networks
  • record our past and plan our future
  • capture and expand our imaginations through poetry, narrative, and literature
  • create and sanctify moral and ethical principles
  • discover, formalize, and apply the laws of the sciences
  • establish formal descriptive and classification systems of the world around us
  • build advanced technologies
  • develop, expand, and examine our concepts

By giving students the opportunity to think deeply and broadly about the relation between language and themselves, the Language Sciences Initiative will enhance their futures at work, in their families, and in their communities.