V: Applied Linguistics

Dr. Matthias Hofmann / Dr. Paul Onanuga
B_AA__3, B_EE__3, SELAEn3, B_InEn3, M_In__1, M_In__3, Erasmus
Thursday, 07:30–9:00, 2/D221(C24.221)

This lecture covers all major areas of applied linguistics, esp. sociolinguistics, stylistics, psycholinguistics / second-language learning, CALL, language testing, translation studies, discourse analysis, corpus linguistics, contrastive analysis,lexicography and language, thought and culture / intercultural communication. The lecture is based on the critical evaluation of sections in Wikipedia and in Davies, A., & Elder, C. (2004). Handbook of Applied Linguistics. Oxford: Blackwell.

In this lecture, students are offered a broad survey of the field and learn about exemplary approaches that also have a practical or job-oriented perspective:
  • they learn to look "behind" the cultural and formal variables governing language comprehension or language learning in context,
  • they are introduced to the professionalization of "language services", i.e. teaching, text production/editing and translation,
  • they see English in a contrastive perspective both to their mother-tongue as well as to intercultural usage / lingua franca situations, and
  • they become aware of the possibilities and limitations of computer applications in linguistics.

This course introduces basic concepts and methods in linguistics as applied to English-speaking cultures. You learn how to adopt a more academic approach to language, and how to put the results into practical use, e.g., in language learning and teaching.

Vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation, pragmatics and procedural knowledge are all a mere selection of factors that are indicative of a learner’s target language proficiency:  How learners acquire these and other competencies is the subject of this semester-long sojourn into the realm of language acquisition.  Theories pertaining to psychology, cognitivism, information processing and contemporary teaching practice are covered, and students are alerted to the controversies and inconsistencies in the field, as well as to some areas for further exploration.

After surveying global trends in English language teaching, students will delve into the visions, values and underlying assumptions that are inherent in an assortment of educational curricula used in Germany.  They will explore the distinctions between idealised, enacted and evaluated curricula before moving onto syllabus design, lesson planning and materials development, specifically for the English language classroom. 

In this blended course, students will undertake online, classroom and field tasks as they hone their teaching skills by studying the methods of professional teachers at selected schools throughout Saxony.  After participating in compulsory introductory sessions on the principles of classroom observation and the rules of engagement, students will then venture onto their school visits and prepare for their individual recorded micro-teaching sessions.  The practical language teaching component of this course must be carried out at an approved institution.

In this course, students will learn to improve their reading skills to become good and efficient readers. Even though every student has learned “how to read”, not everyone knows how to read effectively. Using a variety of text types, we will address reading skills such as preview reading, skimming and scanning, reading for main ideas, reading for details and reading for inference. Strategies for dealing with unknown vocabulary will play as much a role as skills in using the information gained from reading, e.g. summarizing, paraphrasing or creating charts and tables.

This course serves both to extend students’ translation skills acquired in previous courses and to improve their vocabulary skills and level of accuracy in written English. Key principles of translation such as equivalence; translatability; strategies of adaptation; target readership orientation and stylistics will be explored and used in analysing a range of text types. Students will also deepen their knowledge of current translation tools and resources and increase their proficiency in translating.