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COG3112 - Linguistics and Language Processing

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: Dr Dianne Wuillemin


Not offered in 2007


Language is necessarily of interest to those concerned with issues of learning and the representation of knowledge in natural and artificial intelligence systems. Beginning with an examination of the characteristics and rules of human language this unit examines theories of linguistic competence. The relationship between thought and language is of central importance. Consideration is given to the stages of first language acquisition, second language acquisition and critical periods, the effects of language deprivation, language and deafness, language loss, the role of language in philosophical thought, and language use (including speech) in artificial systems.


On completion of this unit students should be able to:

  1. display an understanding of rules of language and the cognitive processes that can be inferred from them;
  2. demonstrate the ability to evaluate theories relating language to thought;
  3. explain ways in which language is necessary for machine thought and what alternatives may be used.


One seminar or on-line poster presentation: 20%
Research essay (1500 words): 30%
Examination (two hours): 50%

Contact hours

3 hours per week (two 1-hour lectures; one 1-hour tutorial)