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People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria
Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research
Teacher Training School of Constantine
Distance Training Course for Middle School Teachers
Prepared by: S.BOULMERKA
Academic Year: 2007- 2008
Department of Distant Training
This section introduces some important fields in linguistics. These are:
Linguistics is the scientific study of language, which can be theoretical or applied. Someone who engages in this study is called a linguist.
Theoretical (or general) linguistics encompasses a number of sub-fields, such as the study of language structure (grammar) and meaning (semantics). The study of grammar encompasses morphology (formation and alteration of word) and syntax (the rules that determine the way words combine into phrases and sentences). Also a part of this field are phonology, the study of sound systems and abstract sound units, and phonetics, which is concerned with the actual properties of speech sounds (phones), non-speech sounds, and how they are produced and perceive.
Linguistics compares languages (comparative linguistics) and explores their histories, in order to find universal properties of language and to account for its development and origins (historical linguistics).
Applied linguistics puts linguistic theories into practice in areas such as foreign language teaching, speech therapy, translation and speech pathology
Linguists may specialize in some subpart of the linguistic structure, which can be arranged in the following terms, from sound to meaning:
Phonetics, the study of the physical aspects of sounds of human language
Phonology, the study of patterns of a language's sounds
Morphology, the study of the internal structure of words
Syntax, the study of how words combine to form grammatical sentences
Semantics, the study of the meaning of words (lexical semantics) and fixed word combinations...