General Linguistics


At the end of this seminar students should be able to:
a) address the challenges that are currently posed in the study of linguistics in a sustained manner;
b) conduct research leading to a PhD dissertation in one of the areas of this seminar;
c) adequately master specific terminologies and methodologies according to the most relevant theoretical models related to the different areas of this seminar;
d) develop interface relationships between different areas of this seminar.
Note: considering the different modules proposed in this seminar, thematic adjustments may be made every year and specific objectives may be defined, according to the course design agreed between the tutor and the student.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Maria do Céu Sernache Caetano Mocho


Weekly - 2

Total - 280

Teaching language





I.: Haspelmath, M. & A. D. Sim. 2010. Understanding Morphology. London: Hodder Education (2nd ed.).
Lieber, R. & P. Stekauer (eds.). 2014. The Oxford Handbook of Derivational Morphology. Oxford: OUP.
Taylor, John (ed.). 2017. The Oxford Handbook of the Word. Oxford: OUP.
II.: Biberauer, T., A. Holmberg, I. Roberts & M. Sheehan (eds.). 2014. Parametric variation: null subjects in minimalist theory. Cambridge: CUP.
Cinque, G. & R. Kayne (eds.). 2005. The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Syntax. Oxford: OUP.
van Riemsdijk, H. (ed.). 1999. Eurotyp. Volume 5/Part 1: Clitics in the Languages of Europe. Berlin/New York: Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 145-234.
Roberts, I. (ed.). 2017. The Oxford Handbook of Universal Grammar. Oxford: OUP.

Teaching method

Seminar sessions will combine the presentation of theorectical topics with the presentation and discussion of papers,  and the analysis of case studies. Students will be invited to participate, actively, in conferences, congresses, workshops, ….

Evaluation method

Two essays (30%), or one essay (15%) in one area and a report of a conference / conference participation in other area (15%)(30%), one scientific paper on a theme / problem to be defined during the working sessions(60%), participation in the seminar(10%)

Subject matter

I. New challenges in Morphology:
1. Different languages, different morphologies:
a. analytic, synthetic and isolating languages;
b. plurality of nouns;
2. Neoclassical word-formation:
a. neoclassical elements: roots, affixoids, or affixes?;
b frontiers between derivational morphology and compounding.
II. New challenges in Syntax:
1. Typology of pronouns: universal and particular properties;
2. Null subjects:
a. The status of pro;
b. The role of agreement.


Programs where the course is taught: