Critical Approaches to Language and Communication ENGLANG5124

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Critical Studies
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

In this course students are introduced to a variety of perspectives on language as socially-embedded practice and to the different research methodologies associated with these. Students will develop the skills to analyse and interpret texts of their own choosing, to critique these from a social perspective and to consider how discourse analysts can make a contribution to pressing social issues.  


10 x 2hr seminars over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Standard entry to Master's at College level

Excluded Courses





Practical skills exercise (Length of text/size of data base proportional to detail of mark-up) - 25%

Written Assignment (4000 words) - 75% 


Course Aims

This course aims to:


■ Introduce the fundamental assumptions of critical perspectives on language and communication and to outline the main theoretical and research trajectories which have been developed over the last half century;

■ Enable students to recognise the linguistic aspect of social contexts and the social relevance of linguistic theories  

■ Provide practical skills in analysing and interpreting texts as socially-embedded practices   

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:


■ Distinguish and evaluate the most significant approaches to critical linguistics in the last half century

■ Critically compare and evaluate seminal texts in the field 

■ Develop and present critically informed research questions for the analysis of texts as socially-embedded practice 

■ Identify and collect relevant data

■ Identify and carry out analytical methods appropriate to the data set and research questions 

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.