Part A. Language systems

Attachment included for a clean copy of graphics

Part A. Language systems

1. Label each of the following as an example of (L)anguage or (C)ommunication. Briefly explain (a sentence or two) why each belongs to the identified category. (10 points)

a.       A scout bee arrives back at his hive and begins an elaborate dance to inform his colony where a pollen source is located.

b.      A father raises his eyebrow in disapproval at his child’s choice of clothing for a wedding ceremony for family friends.

c.       You see the following street sign in Madrid.

d.      “Don’t eat that last piece of cake!


2. Match the following. (5 points)



____ Phonology

a)     study of the minimal meaningful units in language

____ Morphology

b)     study of contextualized usage in language

____ Syntax

c)      study of the system of sounds in language

____ Semantics

d)     study of structures at the phrase, clause, and sentence levels in language

____ Pragmatics

e)     study of meanings and their distribution in language

3. Rephrase each nonstandard dialect statement in the standard equivalent. Then, explain briefly (3-4 sentences) how it would be possible for both versions of each statement to be considered ‘correct.’ Note: You are crafting a single explanation for the acceptability of nonstandard/standard pairs – NOT a separate explanation for each pair. (14 points)

I ain’t got no books with me.


He all right.


He don’t know what he talkin’ about.


I am knowing his name.


You didn’t get an A. Yes (I didn’t).


Give me some of them biscuits.


It’s a right cold mornin’.



4. How do the following utterances illustrate the rule-governed nature of language? Explain briefly. (5 points)

·          “Dog the brown old house the around ran already chased he once.”

·          “He already chased the old brown dog around the house once.”

Part B. Phonetics/Phonology

1. Transcribe the following words. You are welcome to transcribe in and paste here. (15 points)


Your Transcription


















2. Conceptual review. Each item should take no more than one sentence to answer.  (15 points)

  1. Explain how a stop is made. Give examples of two stops in English, one voiced and one voiceless (use symbols).
  1. Explain how a fricative is made. Give examples of two fricatives in English, one voiced and one voiceless (use symbols).
  1. Explain how an affricate is made. Give examples of two affricates in English, one voiced and one voiceless (use symbols).
  1. Explain how a nasal is made. Give examples of one nasal in English (use symbols).
  1. Explain how a liquid is made. Give an example of a liquid in English (use symbols).
  1. Explain the basic articulatory difference between consonants and vowels.
  1. Explain the basic articulatory similarity between diphthongs and glides.

3. Provide the symbol for each of the following sounds of U.S. English. Use and paste if convenient. (15 points)

diphthong moving from low back to high front

glide moving from high back to central

high lax front vowel

high tense back rounded vowel

high tense front vowel

low lax unrounded back vowel

mid lax front vowel

mid tense front vowel

mid unrounded central vowel

voiced alveolar fricative

voiced interdental fricative

voiced velar stop

voiceless bilabial stop

voiceless glottal fricative

voiceless alveopalatal affricate

4. Analyze the data and answer each question. (15 points)

[ɪzil]   butterfly         [salizo]           fry                    [flækso]         leaf

[sali]   pan                   [rezada]        flower             [klas]              bud

[rofti]  girl                  [fasto]             easy                 [salɪ]                oil

[fɪzu]   leap                 [klεs]              tree                 [stava]           limb

a. In this language, are [s] and [z] separate phonemes or allophones of the same phoneme?

b. If you believe that [s] and[z] are phonemes, provide evidence to support that analysis (hint: minimal pair?). If you think they are allophones, provide evidence to support that analysis (hint: no minimal pair?).

c. If they are allophones, identify the base phoneme and the rule for the allophonic variation. (Hint: Remember to consider the conditioning environment in terms of the sounds that both precede and follow the [s] and [z].) Generate an appropriate rule (A > B/…) or prose statement to illustrate/explain your conclusion.

Bonus Question (Natural Classes): Based on your analysis of [s] and [z] and, considering the words [rofti], [flækso], [fɪzu], [fasto] and [stave], could you make a generalization re. a phonological rule that may apply to a particular natural class of sounds in this language? (Hint: Think about s/z and f/v and articulatory characteristics they might share…)