Instructor: Durst M/W/F 1:25pm – 2:20pm
Students often think studying grammar will be boring, but this class makes it interesting and even fun. The main purpose of this course is to help students improve their command of English grammar to become more knowledgeable language users, more accomplished speakers, and more effective writers. We will begin by examining the basic sentence elements of subject, verb, object, adjective, and adverb. We will then study larger issues of sentence structure, phrases, clauses, and the many subtleties of sentence embedding. We will work as language learners, deriving the rules of English inductively from data—rather than deductively from time-honored concepts that in many cases don’t hold up to close scrutiny. Our data will include sentences from a variety of contexts: literary works, academic journals, bureaucrats’ memos and reports, students’ own writing, as well as everyday speech. One day a week, we will work on issues of grammar, punctuation, and style in writing. Those students preparing to be English teachers will have an opportunity to examine the role of grammar instruction in the English classroom.