Language, Culture and Communication - 2016

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Undergraduate Level 1
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Fully Online
  • Prerequisites: Yes
  • Duration: 13 weeks
  • Government loans available: FEE-HELP, HECS-HELP
  • Availability for 2016: SP1 , SP3
  • Assessment: Assignment 1 - Minor Assignment (15%) , Assignment 2 - Major Assignment (40%) - Learn more

Unit provided by

2016 Fees
Domestic 782.00
HECS 782.00
International 1,032.00

This unit was previously known as LSTX110 Language, Culture and Communication.

This unit investigates language through issues the major linguists have asked over the last century. These questions begin with: what counts as a sign and how sign systems begin in a community, but organise the brain of the individual. We track the emergence of language in the child and variations of language which are a consequence of new pressures to act, talk, and think throughout our social networks. The unit also examines the variation of languages across 'language families', and the extent to which linguistic tools can be applied in diverse areas of cultural analysis; from electronic channels to verbal art. We consider the power of language by looking at the relationship of language to the ideologies of everyday experience, as well as those that are actively produced and maintained by powerful groups with vested interests.

In this unit, students will:

  1. begin the study of Linguistics as a formal discipline
  2. understand some of the complexities of studying language as a meaning making system
  3. recognize and analyse patterns in language
  4. relate these patterns to what language is doing for its speakers in a given social and cultural context
  5. understand how language grows and develops in human culture and individuals
  6. understand some of the ways that language varies in different cultures and contexts
  7. understand the power of language in political contexts of language use
  8. make judgments about the social and cultural implications of these patterns
  • Assignment 1 — Minor Assignment (15%)
  • Assignment 2 — Major Assignment (40%)
  • Non-Invigilated Exam — Exam (25%)
  • Online Discussion — Blog posts (20%)

Equivalent units

You cannot enrol in this unit if you have successfully completed any of the following unit(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:

  • LSTX110 — Language, Culture and Communication
  • Broadband access — Students are required to have regular access to a computer and the internet. Mobile devices alone are not sufficient.

This unit addresses the following topics.

1Module 1: Signs and Social Networks - Signs in speech and writing
2Module 1: Signs and Social Networks - How do you mean? Signs and sign systems
3Module 1: Signs and Social Networks - Social networks and social network
4Module 2: Linguistics in the era of big data
5Module 2: Using technology for corpus studies
6Module 2: What kinds of questions can you ask of a corpus?
7Module 3: Language, Culture and Education - How culture shapes learning
8Module 3: Language, Culture and Education - Language construing reality
9Module 3: Language, Culture and Education - The language brain
10Module 4: A World of Language Variation - Language in context, language in society
11Module 4: A World of Language Variation - Register, dialect code
12Module 4: A World of Language Variation - A world of languages
13Course Review

This unit is delivered using the following methods and materials:

Instructional Methods

  • Audio/Video conferencing
  • Blogs
  • Discussion Forum/Discussion Board
  • Embedded Multimedia
  • Online assignment submission
  • Podcasting/Lecture capture

Online materials

  • Resources and Links

This unit is a core requirement in the following courses:

This unit is an approved elective in the following courses:

This unit may be eligible for credit towards other courses:

  1. Many undergraduate courses on offer through OUA include 'open elective' where any OUA unit can be credited to the course. You need to check the Award Requirements on the course page for the number of allowed open electives and any level limitations.
  2. In other cases, the content of this unit might be relevant to a course on offer through OUA or elsewhere. In order to receive credit for this unit in the course you will need to supply the provider institution with a copy of the Unit Profile in the approved format, which you can download here. Note that the Unit Profile is set at the start of the year, and if textbooks change this may not match the Co-Op textbook list.
This unit does not have a prescribed textbook(s).

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