ELL228 : Language and Cognition

Convener(s): Dr Joanna Gavins and Dr Sara Whiteley


General Information

This module explores the relationship between language and the mind. You will be introduced to some of the most ground-breaking theories and frameworks in cognitive linguistics and investigate the different ways in which recent advances in the study of human cognition can enhance our understanding of the production and reception of discourse. We will also consider how the ‘cognitive revolution’ in linguistics has impacted upon controversial debates about the nature of language itself. You will be introduced to a range of cutting-edge concepts from cognitive science, including embodiment, prototypes, mental representation and conceptual integration. You will also have opportunity to apply your new knowledge in your own language experiments, designing and executing small-scale practical investigations into language and cognition for yourself.


The module will be taught through a combination of lectures (1 hour per week), seminars (1 hour per week) and workshops (1 hour per fortnight). You will also be expected to do independent reading and preparation in advance of your classes each week.


For the first assessment, you will design a small practical experiment to investigate a specific aspect of language cognition. Word limit: 1,500 words, Weighting: 30%. For the second assessment, you will write an analysis of an extract of discourse (written or spoken) using the cognitive linguistic frameworks introduced on the module. Word limit: 2,500 words, Weighting: 70%.


Contact Details

Dr Joanna Gavins, 0114 222 0214


Information last changed: Thursday 07th of April 2016 :: 01:16:53 PM (BST)

Please note: This module may or may not run in any individual session. Please check with the course convener.


The University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield, S10 2TN, UK