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Languages of Africa


Admission requirements

Admission to the MA Linguistics or knowledge of linguistics at level of BA Linguistics or a language study with specialization in linguistics.


The course provides an overview of African linguistics and its history. Central topics for African languages such as Tone, Gender and Noun Classes, Serial Verbs, Derivation and Diathesis as well as characterisations of some language families (Cushitic, Bantu, Kwa). Students are encouraged to home in to their specific area of interest.

Course objectives

Students acquire specialist knowledge of the most important linguistic issues in African languages and of the linguistic area they want to work on.
Students acquire a solid overview of various topics in a short period of time and can report on this concisely and critically.


The timetable is available on the MA Linguistics website

Mode of instruction

Seminar (reading list if fewer than 5 particpants)

Course Load

  • time spent on attending lectures and seminars: 26 hours

  • time for studying the compulsory literature and preparing for class: 96 hours

  • time to prepare for the presentation, oral exam and/or writen paper (including reading/research) : 158 hours

Assessment Method

  • Essays 80%

  • Presentation or oral exam 20%

Resit: students who fail the course may resit the essays.


Course materials will be distributed using Blackboard

Reading list

To be announced during class.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available in [English]) and Dutch

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. All other students should contact the “coordinator of studies”:

Students other than MA Linguistics need permission from the coordinator of studies before enrolling.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable


Student administration Van Eyckhof