Clinical Linguistics - LING5310

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Autumn Term 6 15 (7.5) Vikki Janke checkmark-circle


During this course, students will focus on a core set of linguistic case studies, which will equip students with the ability to:
• Assess the extent to which linguistic capacities interact with psychological ones;
• Recognise the relevance of the distinction between developmental and acquired disorders;
• Critically analyse evidence for/against linguistic principles being operative in child grammars;
• Distinguish between language delay and language deviance with regard to developmental disorders;
• Understand the results of social, cognitive and linguistic tests against which subjects' capabilities are measured.

Main themes will be picked from a variety of topics each year, from the following selection: Levels of Representation; Interaction between 'modules'; British Sign Language; Vocabulary and Syntax in the Aphasias; Morpho-syntactic abilities in SLI, complex syntax in Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome and Autism, Linguistic savants; Pragmatic knowledge in these disorders; Bi-Lingualism.


Contact hours

Total Contact Hours: 20
Private Study Hours: 130
Total Study Hours: 150

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods
• Essay - 2,500 words – 65%
• Poster – 35%

Reassessment methods
• Reassessment Instrument: 100% Coursework

Indicative reading

The University is committed to ensuring that core reading materials are in accessible electronic format in line with the Kent Inclusive Practices. The most up to date reading list for each module can be found on the university's reading list pages:

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1 Demonstrate their knowledge of current key debates within linguistics/language acquisition;
2 Consider how different levels of representation interact with each other;
3 Understand the difference between atypical language development and atypical language acquired once development is complete;
4 Assess the extent to which theoretical and empirical work on atypical linguistic development coincide;
5 Demonstrate the ability to analyse transcripts from data from a variety of subjects with particular language impairments, using these data to identify typical characteristics
of these disorders;
6 Understand the results of social, cognitive and linguistic tests against which subjects' capabilities are measured (e.g. standardised vocabulary, verbal and non-verbal
reasoning test; experimental tests designed to tap into particular aspects of linguistic knowledge).

The intended generic learning outcomes.

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1 Engage in critical reflection, discussion and analysis of various theoretical approaches and empirical findings and to devise and sustain arguments relating to these
2 Make informed judgments about the efficacy of different theoretical approaches to language development;
3 Undertake independent learning (exercising initiative and personal responsibility), use secondary texts with critical discrimination, reflect critically on their own academic
work and present coherent arguments both during classroom discussion and in their written work;
4 Demonstrate the ability to explain, with confidence and assurance, linguistic notions to interested yet non-specialist audiences.


  1. Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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