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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Miracles of Human Language: An Introduction to Linguistics by Universiteit Leiden

4.7
stars
1,792 ratings
535 reviews

About the Course

Everywhere, every day, everybody uses language. There is no human society, no matter how small or how isolated, which does not employ a language that is rich and diverse. This course introduces you to linguistics, featuring interviews with well-known linguists and with speakers of many different languages. Join us to explore the miracles of human language! The Miracles of Human Language introduces you to the many-faceted study of languages, which has amazed humans since the beginning of history. Together with speakers of many other languages around the world, as well as with famous linguists such as Noam Chomsky and Adele Goldberg, you will learn to understand and analyse how your native tongue is at the same time similar and different from many other languages. You will learn the basic concepts of linguistics, get to know some of the key features of big and small languages and get insight into what linguists do. This course gives an introduction into the study of languages, the field of linguistics. With the support of the basic linguistic terminology that is offered in the course, you will soon be able to comment both on variety between languages, as well as on a single language’s internal structure. Anyone who wishes to understand how languages work, and how they can give us insight into the human mind is very welcome to join. The course is useful if you want to get a fairly quick introduction into linguistics, for instance because you are considering studying it further, or because you are interested in a neighbouring discipline such as psychology, computer science or anthropology. Furthermore, the course will help you develop analytical skills. If you are curious to understand how language works and how it gives insight into the human mind, this course is definitely for you!...

Top reviews

DC
Sep 23, 2017

Extremely informational, well presented, with questions that stimulate reflection. The optional reading material is food for thought. I hope to see more courses from the same professor and University.

DP
Jan 2, 2017

Excellent! Really enjoyed and learnt a lot. I did not expect such a great content and professionalism in a free course. I am definitely purchasing for the title.\n\nThanks to all the team! Great job!

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476 - 500 of 528 Reviews for Miracles of Human Language: An Introduction to Linguistics

By Daniele C R

Oct 9, 2016

Very nice work on the various fields of Linguistics, high level interviews, but rather laborious and time consuming quizzes.

By Liz J

Sep 11, 2016

I enjoyed the course and learned a lot. I wish there had been more interaction in the discussions, though.

By Xiaoyun Y

Mar 12, 2019

It is a great course including details and all aspects of linguistics. It satisfies my curiosity!

By Mustapha K

May 14, 2017

Thank you for your great effort making this course possible for people from all over the world.

By Kathleen K

May 15, 2016

Material is excellent and very interesting. Test questions can be confusing and poorly phrased.

By Genevieve L D K

Oct 21, 2019

Very enjoyable however, I feel that Quiz Three needs to be looked over for software problems.

By Antonella C

Nov 23, 2018

Very interesting and passionating course even for people who are new to linguistic.

By Tianyu Z

Jun 12, 2020

It is a great introduction course, covering every aspect related to linguistics.

By Laureen E

Sep 17, 2019

First course tried.. succeeded! Very informative and nice to work on! Thank you

By André L

Apr 9, 2018

Interesting course, I've learned a lot of things about studying languages.

By Jia W

Jun 21, 2016

some problems in quiz part are confusing... but nice course in general

By Gautam M

Oct 3, 2020

An eye-opener and a game changer course to understand humanity.

By Nathalie v L

Nov 5, 2019

great course. Great refresher 30 years after college.

By Mohammed A A A

May 21, 2020

One of the most brilliant courses I have ever taken!

By Osnat B

Apr 5, 2019

Wide-angle, general introductory course. Engaging.

By Ruben A M d C

Jan 28, 2017

Interesting content, but still a bit buggy...

By Fernando C M

Jan 2, 2020

Good course, nice teachers, good material

By Dorothy H

Sep 25, 2016

The interview with Chomsky a real treat.

By Cecilia C

Jun 25, 2017

Very interesting course! Thank you!

By Dennis M

May 21, 2020

Great introduction to linguistics.

By Rizky A D

Nov 6, 2016

101 linguistics

By Wang x

Feb 9, 2017

great course!

By Li j x

Oct 31, 2020

很好best

By Valdas M

Nov 20, 2020

Interesting course. It's difficult to cover everything in such a short course. The last two weeks' classes have not much to do with "miracles" of languages. I would say these things are common to all languages. I would have preferred to concentrate more on firs 4 weeks topics. This all stuff with politeness does not fit much in the topic. It's more sociolinguistics, cultural studies etc. And there is not much to learn. There is no much valuable information to remember. I liked more the beginning about sounds, typology of languages etc. This all stuff with positive and negative face was a little strange. Specially, it was difficult to do the tests with these "faces". Listening exercises were quite OK, but for instance to decode Chinese without transcription was impossible task. All these exercises with language mistakes was also strange. If we all do pronunciation mistakes in all languages what’s the point to study these mistakes? What's the point to see what mistake is made in Basque, Gungbe or any other language? I saw this exercise as pure waste of my time. So, my general suggestion would be to concentrate on pure linguistic things (first 4 weeks) and do not go into field of sociology, neuro or psycholinguistics. BTW this couple of students is not balanced because the young man dominates all discussions. The girl should be more active or the man less active.

By Jacques C

Dec 13, 2020

The course materials are incomplete or incorrect. In at least 3 of the weeks the course refers to information that is either not provided or is no longer available at the source. And there are at least 2 quiz questions that have incorrect answers. (And they acknowledge the questions are incorrect in the forums, but haven't bothered to fix them).

I would say that this course is also more difficult than it needs to be because some of the information required to properly understand the material and, thus, answer the quizzes is not covered in the course. Thus you basically have to troll wikipedia or google randomly to find this stuff out. It should just be provided as this is supposed to be a basic introductory course.

I also found all the peer interactions to be wanting. A lot of the learning is supposed to happen in the forums where you discuss things with your peers. Well almost no one replies to anyone else ... and when they do ... its generally not all that meaningful.

They obviously did a lot of work to get this course done and I appreciate that. But it should be a living thing. Mistakes should be corrected, a better way to have students interact with each other should be imagined.

I did get a good introduction to the concepts of linguistics even though the construction of the course is quite frustrating. So I gave it 3 stars.