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Topics in Linguistics C: Descriptive and contact linguistics



In this course, we discuss how to do research in Contact Linguistics. We consider how to develop experiments for such research, and how to deal with the various ways and materials available to collect data. We discuss the background literature, and explain how the results of an experiment may lead up to a publication or a book chapter. Topics to be covered include: syntactic priming, psycholinguistic reseach on bilingualism, investigating bilingualism using different types of data, and investigating bilingualism in different grammatical areas. The teaching material includes journal articles, chapters from PhD theses in contact linguistics, and websites where students can find stimuli that can be used in experiments.

Course objectives

Student will learn how to develop a reseach proposal or an experiment that can lead to a publication. They will choose a type of elicitation material among those discussed in the course and conduct a small-scale experiment during the course. Furthermore, students can use the knowledge and insights they aqcuire in this course for the research they will do for their final Research MA thesis.



One time per week: Monday, 13:00-15:00

Mode of instruction


Course Load

140 hours
Weekly seminars: 12
Literature reading & Practical work (8 hours p/week): 48
Assignments & final essay: 80

Assessment method

Participation 20%, Oral presentation 30%, Final paper 50%




Reading list

The literature will be available on Blackboard before the course.


Enrollment through uSis for the course and the examination or paper is mandatory.

When registering, students that are registered for the specialisation that this course belongs to, or the Research Master, take priority. The deadline for registration is August 15 (first semester) or January 15 (second semester). All other students should contact the Coordinator of studies

Prospective students, please check the Study Abroad/Exchange website for information on how to apply.

Application for Contractonderwijs


Coordinator of Studies

Programme Linguistics Research