Language and Meaning


The course focuses on the study of the analysis of meaning as it is expressed through elements of language such as words and sentences (the field of semantics) and as it is understood in different real world contexts (the filed of pragmatics). Particular attention will be paid to meaning relations such as synonym (having the same meaning) and oppositeness, to various types of conclusions that sentences lead to or involve (such as presuppositions), to elements that crucially depend on context for their interpretation (including deictic elements, which are linked to the non-linguistic context), to the meaning of verbal categories such as tense and mood, and to the relation between language and logic.


WebLearn GradSchool

  • Semester 2 - 2016


  • Semester 2 - 2016

Learning Outcomes

1. Demonstrate an understanding of nature of meaning as expressed through language;

2. Demonstrate an understanding of basic principles of semantics and pragmatics as applied to English

3. Demonstrate an awareness of the range of linguistic devices for expressing time and space relations;

4. Demonstrate an understanding of the concepts of deixis and anaphora;

5. Demonstrate an understanding of logical relations relevant to linguistic analysis, such as negation, modality, scope, presupposition and implication


Topics to be covered include:

  • Deixis: reference to the spatio-temporal frame encompassing the speech act
  • Tense and time reference: tense and aspect systems in the English verb
  • Mood and modality
  • Anaphora: textual reference; the function of pronouns and other anaphoric items
  • Pragmatics: the study of speech acts; presupposition and implication

Assumed Knowledge

LING6910 (or equivalent)

Assessment Items

Written Assignment: Written Assignment 1

Essay: Essay 2

Contact Hours

Callaghan and WebLearn GradSchool


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

or equivalent by Distance Mode