Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Free online introductory course in linguistics - sign up now

Go get your first taste of linguistics with this nice new free online course!
There's a new course on coursera (online platform for good free distance courses) in linguistics! The course is led by prof Marc van Oostendorp and is called "Miracles of Human Language: An Introduction to Linguistics"*. It's from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands and very interesting!

It takes 5 weeks of 4-6 hours per week, it's free (no fees anywhere), all material and readings are provided online for free and in general it looks like a very well organised and interesting introductory course. The course will also feature videos from informants speaking foreign languages which you will analyse! If there was ever a good opportunity to try out a little bit of linguistics for the first time - this is the one!

As all y'all probably know there are also linguistics lectures that you can watch online. For example: the NativLang-channel, Ling Space, MIT linguistics, videos from the Linguistics podcast,  Martin Hilperts excellent vids, etc. You can also check out the Virtual Linguistics Campus by Marburg Uni and a search through the linguistics lectures of iTunes U is also useful.

As a final bit of encouragement: here's a picture of me trying to navigate the channels of Leiden using a world map of linguistic and religious diversity from the 1920's. See how inspired one gets around that town!

Univeristy of Leiden is a great place, I've been there many a times. I have not attended a class by prof Oostendorp, but from what I've seen it seems lika a really good course and I hope you'll take this opportunity to get your first taste of linguistics.

Tot ziens!

p.s. The Netherlands is an exceptional place when it comes to linguistics, they host a large number of linguistic journals, departments and institutes - especially if one considers per capita. I'm not sure why this is and I'd like to see numbers of this.

* No, I do not think the title is meant as opposition to Russel Gray's Nijmegen lectures.

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