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Previous Question of 'Introduction to Linguistics'- 2012 (with answer)


Introduction to Linguistics



Subject Code: 1178

(Introduction to Linguistics)

Time: 4 Hours                                                                                                       Full Marks: 80


1. Answer any ten of the following questions                                                           1 × 10 = 10

(a) What are the major levels of linguistics?

      Ans: Phonetics, Phonology, Morphology, Syntax, Semantics, Pragmatics, Graphology and Lexicology are the major levels of linguistics.

(b) What is syntax?

      Ans: Syntax is the rules and principles of the sentence structure of a language.

(c) What are the branches of phonetics?

      Ans: The branches of phonetics are Articulatory Phonetics, Acoustic Phonetics and Auditory Phonetics.

(d) What is zero allomorph?

      Ans: Zero allomorph is an inflection on noun or verbs presumed to be present although invisible.

(e) Define voicing.

      Ans: Voicing refers to either the physical production of vibration by the vocal folds as part of articulation, or the potential phonological distinction this allows.

(f) What is elision?

      Ans: Elision is the complete disappearance of one or more sounds in a word or phrase, making the word or phrase easier for the speaker to pronounce.

(g) What is Psycholinguistics?

      Ans: Psycholinguistics is the study of the psychological and neuro-biological factors that facilitate humans to acquire, use, understand and produce language.

(h) What is phoneme?

      Ans: A phoneme is a sound or a group of different sounds perceived to have the same function by speakers of the language or dialect in question. An example is the English phoneme /k/, which occurs in words such as ‘cat’, ‘kit’, ‘scat’, and ‘skit’.

(i) Define LAD.

      Ans: LAD stands for Language Acquisition Device which is a hypothetical tool hardwired into the brain that helps children rapidly learn and understand language.

(j) What is IPA?

      Ans: IPA stands for International Phonetic Alphabet devised by the International Phonetic Association in the late 19th century as a standardized representation of the sounds of spoken language.

(k) How many vowel sounds are there in English?

      Ans: There are 20 vowel sounds in English.

(l) What is acronym?

      Ans: An acronym is a word or name formed as an abbreviation from the initial components in a phrase or a word.


Answer any five of the following questions:                                                               4 × 5 = 20

2. Define ‘stress’ and ‘tone’.

3. What is grammatical morpheme?

4. Define diphthong Mention the eight diphthongal phonemes of English Language.

5. Explain telegraphic speech.

6. Explain deep and surface structures.

7. What are the main differences between ‘Langue’ and ‘Parole’?

8 Write a short note on long and short vowel sounds.

9. Transcribe the following words phonetically:

Prolong, density, near, college.



Answer any five questions:                                                                                        10 × 5 = 50

10. What is language? What are the major characteristics of language?

11. How has Chomsky distinguished between competence and performance?

l2. Classify English consonant phonemes according to place of articulation.

13. Discuss the major syntactic processes in English.

14. Give an account of Spair-Whorf Hypothesis.

15. What is IC analysis? Exemplify IC analysis through a tree diagram.

16. Discuss different varieties of sociolinguistics.

17. Show different stages of child language development.