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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : European Languages and Cultures - Hispanic Studies

Postgraduate Course: Colloquial Spanish. Social and Discursive Perspectives on Register, Style and Genre (ELCH11014)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryColloquial language it is the most common functional modality of speech and it is normally employed in conversation and other informal contexts. The central topic of this course is the study of Spanish colloquial language in context. The course will explore various linguistic theories and methodological approaches related to concepts connected with Spanish language use and communication, including register, style and discourse analysis. The goal of this course is to provide students with an understanding of the social and stylistic varieties of language. We will also study the most relevant issues arising from the analysis of interpersonal spoken and written registers, explicit vs. implicit meanings (the distinction between 'what is said' and 'what is meant'), conversational implicatures (suggested inferences that arise as a result of co-operative behaviour), figurative language (metaphor, irony, humour), etc.
Course description The course will engage with various linguistic concepts from sociolinguistic and pragmatic perspectives in order for students to understand the different social varieties of language and learn how to identify and describe the situational and communicative characteristics of registers, styles and genres in Spanish. Students will also be provided with theoretical and applied groundings in topics related to the analysis of communicative features and functions of language, identification of spoken and written registers, historical evolution of registers and style, etc. After taking this course, students will be able to better identify the boundaries of colloquial Spanish, its particularities and domains of use in our society by understanding how colloquial forms and meanings are constructed and negotiated in Spanish. In this course, students will read original and recent work in these areas, and engage themselves in analysing different types of utterances and their meanings as they are shaped by different contextual and discursive factors. This is a seminar-based course, which will include analysis of primary source texts, language corpora and real data, accompanied by recommended secondary readings. Each week, a presentation will be provided by the tutor, followed by workshop-based discussions of the course readings and group activities for practicing linguistic analysis. Students¿ learning and understanding will be tested through coursework assignments and a final essay. The course will be delivered and assessed in Spanish.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  2
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework 100%: 2 Linguistic analysis assignments (20%); Group video documentary (20%); 3000 words final essay: 60%.
Feedback Formative feedback: mid-term individual report: 15 minutes interview with each student during mid semester.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Express and evidence an informed understanding of the fundamental questions that drive modern linguistic research concerning register, style and genre in the Spanish language and the Spanish-Speaking World.
  2. Evaluate critically a variety of source materials in the core areas of colloquial Spanish, pragmatic and sociolinguistic theory, through the comprehension and analysis of Spanish in a wide range of communicative contexts and discursive modes.
  3. Produce written/oral assignments which develop arguments both critically and systematically with the use of relevant emphases, subsidiary points, and examples.
  4. Demonstrate communication, presentation and interaction skills across a wide range of media and circumstances, both formal and informal, for lay and specialised audiences.
  5. Consistently exercise autonomy and initiative, taking responsibility for their own and collaborative work and for a range of resources.
Reading List
Essential readings:
Briz Gómez, A. (2019). Español coloquial. Situación y uso. Madrid: Arco Libros.
Briz Gómez, A. (2011). El español coloquial en la conversación. Barcelona: Ariel.
A list of essential readings available digitally via the Course Resource List will be provided each year.
Recommended readings:
Albelda Marco, M. and Fernández, Mª J. (2008). Cómo enseñar el registro coloquial en la clase de E/LE y de E/L2: la conversación coloquial. Madrid: Arco Libros.
Biber, D. and Conrad, S. (2019). Register, Genre and Style. Cambridge: University Press.
Birner, B. J. (2012). Introduction to Pragmatics. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons.
Briz Gómez, A. (2002). El español coloquial en la clase de E/LE. Un recorrido a través de los textos. Madrid: SGEL.
Casamiglia, H. and Tusón, A. (1999). Las cosas del decir. Manual de análisis del discurso. Barcelona: Ariel.
Dumitrescu, D. and Andueza, P. (2018). L2 Spanish Pragmatics. From Research to Teaching. London and New York. Routledge.
Escandell, V. (1993). Introducción a la pragmática. Barcelona: Ariel.
Fernández Colomer, Mª J. (2003 ). "La metáfora en español coloquial¿. Interlingüística, 14.
Montolío, E. (2020). Cosas que pasan cuando conversamos. Barcelona: Ariel.
Further readings:
Blakemore, D. (1992). Understanding Utterances: An Introduction to Pragmatics. Oxford: Blackwell.
Fitch, R. (2011). Diccionario de coloquialismos y términos dialectales del español. Madrid: Arco Libros.
Grundy, P. (1995). Doing Pragmatics. London and New York: Edward Arnold.
Koike, D. and Felix-Brasdefer, J. C. (2020). The Routledge Handbook of Spanish Pragmatics: Foundations and Interfaces. London and New York: Routledge.
Pons Bordería, S. (2004). Conceptos y aplicaciones de la teoría de la relevancia. Madrid: Arco Libros.
Ruiz Gurillo, L. (2001). Las locuciones en español actual. Madrid: Arco Libros.
Ruiz Gurillo, L. (1998). La fraseología del español coloquial. Barcelona: Ariel.
Stilwell, J. (1999). Pragmatics. London & New York: Routledge.
Yule, G. 1996. Pragmatics. Oxford: University Press.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 1. Knowledge and understanding;
2. Practice: applied knowledge and understanding;
3. Generic cognitive skills;
4. Communications, ICT and numeracy skills;
5. Autonomy, accountability and working with others.
KeywordsColloquial Spanish,Hispanic Linguistics,Sociolinguistics,Pragmatics,Register,Style,Genre
Course organiserDr Carlos Soler Montes
Tel: (0131 6)50 8969
Course secretaryMr Iain Harrison
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