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SEL2223 : Speakers as Wordsmiths: the creation of new words in present-day English

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr William van der Wurff
  • Owning School: English Lit, Language & Linguistics
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


1. Exploring the formation and diffusion of new words in English, using modern digital tools
2. Exploring relevant concepts and topics in lexicology, morphology, corpus linguistics and linguistic data collection

Outline Of Syllabus

There will be two lectures and one seminar per week. The themes to be covered in the lectures (further discussed/applied in the seminars) will include: data and methods of data collection, the structure of different types of new words, the issue of morphological productivity, issues in measuring lexical frequency, new lexis in recent English, and theoretical issues involved in the study of these topics.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion901:0090:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture241:0024:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading741:0074:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching121:0012:00N/A
Jointly Taught With
Code Title
SEL8204Lexical Innovation
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures introduce data and the methods and concepts needed for their systematic collection and analysis. Seminars are intended to give the student the opportunity to consolidate understanding of issues raised in reading and in lectures. Students will devote the rest of the time to preparation of material before lectures and seminars, to preparation for the two mid-term tests and to planning, carrying out and writing up the final data collection plus analysis assignment.

Assessment Methods

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

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination502M35testing knowledge and understanding of methods and concepts of new-word analysis
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2A652500-word essay
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The in-class test assesses the student’s acquisition of knowledge and ability to apply it to selected data. The final essay gives students the opportunity to demonstrate their ability to carry out an independent investigation in the field of lexical innovation.

Reading Lists