Image by Clarisse Meyer

Linguistics

014 Language and Cognition

【Prerequisites】

High school students interested in learning about language. This is also an excellent course to prepare for college writing and the kinds of literary analyses performed in college classrooms. 

【Description】

This course examines some of the interrelationships between language, the brain, and thought.  Do people who speak different languages think differently? What does language tell us about how people conceptualize objects and abstract notions such as time and space? How does language relate to other cognitive processes?  Is there a language gene? What can we learn about how humans produce language through speech errors and neuropathologies? Is language a uniquely human ability?  

【Sample research topics】

  • How is sign language related to spoken language in the brain?

  • Is there a cognitive advantage to bilingualism?

  • Is there any aspect of human language that is truly unique in the animal kingdom?

  • Do the metaphors in a particular language lead its speakers to see the world differently from speakers of other languages?

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