Adult Language Development and Processing

The details
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 4
Sunday 17 January 2021
Friday 26 March 2021
18 May 2020


Requisites for this module



Key module for


Module description

The module provides an introduction to key concepts used in research on language processing. Topics will include the organisation of words in our mental lexicon, the way in which we comprehend and process sentences, our production of words and sentences, and the relationship between language processing, music, and the brain. The module will provide students with an overview of research findings from a broad range of studies, including studies conducted in the Department of Language and Linguistics at the University of Essex.

Module aims

The module aims to:
• Provide a basic introduction to key concepts, methods, and theoretical approaches in research on psycholinguistics.
• Provide students with an introduction to a number of contemporary issues in the study of the acquisition of language as well as the study of some developmental language disorders.
• Demonstrate the importance of psycholinguistics to other disciplines, particularly psychology and cognitive science.
• Question and challenge stereotypical views on acquisition, processing and disorders of language.
• Enable students to gain the necessary skills and knowledge to go on to second year courses in linguistics.
• Acquire a range of ‘transferable skills’, e.g.. skills such as data analysis, group discussion, report writing, bibliographical referencing etc., which will be useful outside as well as inside the academic context.

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of this half module, students should be able to:
1. define core terms and concepts in language processing research,
2. describe commonly used empirical methods in language processing research,
3. identify core issues in research on language processing and discuss the core assumptions of relevant theoretical models,
4. summarise and present empirical results from previous studies clearly and accurately,
5. critically evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of research into language processing,
6. present ideas in a structured, coherent and cohesive fashion, using appropriate style and terminology, and demonstrating clarity, precision, and accuracy.

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

2 hours per week - confirmed details will be announced at the start of the academic year.


  • Paul Warren. (2013) Introducing psycholinguistics, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Essay   26/02/2021  40% 
Coursework   Presentation Evaluation  26/03/2021  40% 
Practical   Quiz 1     
Practical   Quiz 2     
Practical   Quiz 3     
Practical   Quiz 4     
Practical   Quiz 5     

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
50% 50%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Claire Delle Luche, email: c.delleluche@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Claire Delle Luche and Dr Laurel Lawyer
Claire Delle Luche, 4.313, 872113, c.delleluche@essex.ac.uk Laurel Lawyer, 4.340, 872087, l.lawyer@essex.ac.uk



External examiner

Dr Lynne Julie Cahill
University of Sussex
Available via Moodle
Of 1077 hours, 0 (0%) hours available to students:
1077 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

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