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Advanced Syntax 1


Admission requirements

Students must have basic knowledge of GB or Minimalist syntax (e.g., (the equivalent of) syntax 1 and syntax 2 in the Leiden BA linguistics program).


This course prepares the students for the rest of the syntax program in the MA, Advanced syntax 2 (second block of the first term) and Comparative syntax (second term). It does so by devoting the first half to a quick reminder course on minimalist syntax, for which we use the text book by Olaf Koeneman and Hedde Zeijlstra (see below). In the second half, we discuss more in depth some issues in argument structure, on the basis of a number of recent articles on the topic.

Course objectives

  1. Students understand and can work with the notions which are fundamental to the Minimalist framework of syntax.
  2. Students can use argumentation methods common in syntactic theory.
  3. Students are capable of discussing linguistic phenomena using the tools within the Minimalist Program.
  4. Students are able to write a research paper: do the research and report on it.


The timetable is available on the MA Linguistics website

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

Course Load

Total course load 5 EC x 28 hours = 140 hours

  • Lectures: 6 weeks à 4 hrs = 24 hours

  • Study of compulsory literature: 6 x 10 = 60 hours

  • Assignment(s) (part 1): 6 x 3 = 18 hours

  • Short paper/essay (part 2): 38 hours

Assessment method

Assessment and Weighing

  • Assignments: 50%

  • Short paper/essay (part 2 block 1): 50%
    Compensation possible, but the short paper/essay must be awarded with a 5.5 or higher.


Assigments and the short paper/essay can be redone in case of a “fail”.

Inspection and feedback

Students are entitled to view their marked examination within a period of 30 days, following publication of the results of a written examination.


Blackboard will be used for the dissemination of all sorts of information concerning this course, and, more generally, to communicate with the students.

Reading list

For the first part of this course we use the following textbook:
Olaf Koeneman and Hedde Zeijlstra, Introducing syntax. Cambridge University Press, 2017.

Readings for the rest of the course time will be announced through Blackboard as we go along.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable


Please contact Student administration van Eyckhof for questions.
The coordinator of studies is Else van Dijk