SEL8361 : The Social History of English

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


• To familiarise students with the main linguistic developments (syntactic, phonological, lexical, pragmatic) in the history of the English language;
• To develop students' ability to read texts from a variety of periods in the history of English;
• To develop students’ ability to analyse linguistic features of texts and carry out independent work with texts;
• To deepen and broaden students' knowledge of syntax and phonology by applying relevant concepts and techniques to data from earlier periods of English;
• To give students a good insight into the processes by which the English language has evolved into its present-day state;
• To develop competence in using dictionaries, historical corpora and other electronic resources for independent work.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module is taught in two lectures and a one-hour seminar per week.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion180:0080:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture241:0024:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading184:0084:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching121:0012:00N/A
Jointly Taught With
Code Title
SEL2212Early English: Texts, Patterns and Varieties
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures will be used to impart information about the properties of the English language in its various periods, demonstrate and discuss methods and resources for text analysis, and provide overall coherence for the module.

Seminars will focus on concrete textual work of various types. They also aim to develop presentation skills, to widen and deepen analytic skills, using theoretical concepts and techniques, and to develop students' skills in devising and planning independent work on the subject.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2A602000 words
Written exercise2M30Coursework: 1,500 words
Practical/lab report2M1015 minute presentation on students' coursework
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The final essay (60%) requires students to show they can carry out a small-scale independent research project in the subject area of the module. The coursework (30%) enables students to obtain practice in this and to further develop their written expression. The presentation (10%) arises from the coursework and encourages skill and confidence in oral communication.

Reading Lists