First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Human and Social Sciences and Cultural Heritage
Course unit
SUP7082097, A.A. 2018/19

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2018/19

Information on the course unit
Degree course Second cycle degree in
LE0610, Degree course structure A.Y. 2008/09, A.Y. 2018/19
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Number of ECTS credits allocated 6.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination LANGUAGE ACQUISITION
Website of the academic structure
Department of reference Department of Linguistic and Literary Studies
E-Learning website
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction Italian
Single Course unit The Course unit can be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge EMANUELA SANFELICI L-LIN/01

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Core courses L-LIN/01 Glottology and Linguistics 6.0

Course unit organization
Period First semester
Year 1st Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Lecture 6.0 42 108.0 No turn

Start of activities 25/09/2018
End of activities 18/01/2019
Show course schedule 2019/20 Reg.2008 course timetable

Examination board
Board From To Members of the board
2 1819 01/10/2018 30/11/2019 SANFELICI EMANUELA (Presidente)
BERTOCCI DAVIDE (Membro Effettivo)
1 1718 01/10/2017 30/11/2018 SANFELICI EMANUELA (Presidente)
BERTOCCI DAVIDE (Membro Effettivo)

Prerequisites: Previous attendance of, Syntax and Phonetics and Phonology, is warmly, though not mandatorily, suggested.
Target skills and knowledge: The course aims to offer the first tools to approach linguistics from an experimental perspective and, at the same time, to provide theoretical formalizations of acquisition problems. Moreover, the course will constitute a useful step in the formation of future teachers as children’s language-specific disorders will be discussed.
Examination methods: The final exam consists of ten written questions and lasts two hours. There are two types of questions: five questions will be open and broadly touch the topics dealt with in the course; five questions will require the applications of the acquired competences to new problems
Assessment criteria: The exam will evaluate students’ comprehension of the course topics and of the references, the acquisition of both notions and methodologies, the ability to apply them to solve new problems, the logic-argumentative ability, namely the relevance of the answers with respect to the questions.
Course unit contents: The course is an introduction to the formal theories of language acquisition. In the first week the principles governing the acquisition of the first language will be discussed and exemplified. The central weeks will be devoted to address specific linguistic phenomena: a) the acquisition of prosody; b) the acquisition of inflective morphology, with a focus on gender and number; c) the acquisition of A’ movement, with a zoom onto relative clauses and wh- questions; d) the acquisition of the syntax of subjects (null and lexicalized subjects); e) the acquisition of scalar implicatures (the interpretation of numerals).
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: The course consists of frontal lessons. All the topics addressed in class will be supported with specific scientific papers which will be discussed in small groups and together with the professor. The attendance is warmly suggested.
Additional notes about suggested reading: The scientific papers presented during the course and the powerpoint presentations will be uploaded in the Moodle page of the course. In the same page the students will also find further references for those who are interested in advancing some or all the topics.
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • Guasti Maria Teresa, Language acquisition. The growth of grammar.. Cambridge (Mass): The MIT Press, 2002. Per l'esame: capitoli 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,9 Cerca nel catalogo
  • Lust Barbara & Claire Foley, First Language Acquisition: The essential readings. Malden MA: Blackwell, 2004. Per l'esame: capitoli 1 e 2 Cerca nel catalogo

Innovative teaching methods: Teaching and learning strategies
  • Lecturing
  • Laboratory
  • Problem based learning
  • Interactive lecturing
  • Questioning
  • Problem solving
  • Concept maps
  • Peer feedback
  • Use of online videos
  • Students peer review

Innovative teaching methods: Software or applications used
  • Moodle (files, quizzes, workshops, ...)
  • Latex

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Good Health and Well-Being Quality Education Gender Equality