Joint-honours information for 2016 entry

Investigating Language in Context

Module Q1076

Module details for 2016/17.

15 credits

FHEQ Level 4

Module Outline

This module is an introduction to the study of language beyond sentence and clause level in real-life and fictional contexts. Following an introduction to the features of spoken language, the module centres on Conversation Analysis, as the approach to discourse as structured interaction, and on the discussion of some theoretical models for the investigation of contextualized exchanges, e.g. Grice's Cooperative Principle and Politeness Theory. In this module the students are presented with the methodological issues of language transcription and data collection. Aiming to introduce the notion of variation in discourse, the module shows how in different contexts different conversational patterns are produced (e.g. question-answer pairs in trials v. TV interviews) and how such factors as gender, class or status can affect conversation. The module also offers a reflection on the difference between authentic v. fictional or represented conversation in drama and film from a conversation analysis perspective and encourages an insight into issues of characterisation and point of view through discourse representation.

Module learning outcomes

Understand what verbal interaction as a social practice involves and demonstrate factual knowledge of the different social and linguistic contexts which affect the nature of language.

Identify core issues in the representation of interaction in fictional contexts.

Synthesise ideas from a number of sources and follow an argument.

Transcribe and analyse conversational data and formulate basic research hypotheses.

Coursework components. Weighted as shown below.
EssayA2 Week 2 40.00%
EssayT2 Week 8 60.00%

Submission deadlines may vary for different types of assignment/groups of students.


Coursework components (if listed) total 100% of the overall coursework weighting value.

TermMethodDurationWeek pattern
Spring SemesterLecture1 hour111111111111
Spring SemesterSeminar1 hour111111111111

How to read the week pattern

The numbers indicate the weeks of the term and how many events take place each week.

Dr Lynne Cahill

Assess convenor

Ms Emma Carlyle

Assess convenor

Miss Trudy Cadman

Assess convenor

Dr Charlotte Taylor

Convenor, Assess convenor

Prof Carol Watts

Assess convenor

Dr Chloe Porter

Assess convenor

Please note that the University will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver courses and modules in accordance with the descriptions set out here. However, the University keeps its courses and modules under review with the aim of enhancing quality. Some changes may therefore be made to the form or content of courses or modules shown as part of the normal process of curriculum management.

The University reserves the right to make changes to the contents or methods of delivery of, or to discontinue, merge or combine modules, if such action is reasonably considered necessary by the University. If there are not sufficient student numbers to make a module viable, the University reserves the right to cancel such a module. If the University withdraws or discontinues a module, it will use its reasonable endeavours to provide a suitable alternative module.