The history of English as a language of science.
Sociolinguistic aspects of English as a language of science.
Similarities and differences in the rhetoric of diverse academic disciplines.
Aspects of "ordinary English" as opposed to "scientific" or "academic" English.
The philosophy of language underlying science and academia
The rhetoric around science, popular science and pseudo-science




To create an awareness of the place and role of the English language in academic research.
To create an awareness of the cross-disciplinary diversity of scientific/academic discourse.
To provide an introduction to questions pertaining to the sociology of knowledge and the linguistic ideological questions related to academic knowledge.

Learning outcomes:
On completion of this course you will be able to
1. understand the present place and role of English in academic research as well as the history of English and other languages of science.
2. understand how communication is bound to the institutions of science and academia
3. understand the philosophies of language on which the 'Science Project' rests




1) Individual research paper on a topic chosen by the student (in consultation with the lecturer)
2) A quiz on the lectures covered during the semester



Bibliography (selection)

Ammon, Ulrich (ed.). 2001. The dominance of English as a language of science: Effects on other languages and language communities. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
Atkinson, Dwight. 1999. Scientific discourse in sociohistorical context. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
Bazerman, Charles. (1988) Shaping written knowledge: The genre and activity of the experimental article in science. Madison, Wis.: University of Wisconsin Press.
Banks, David. 2008. The development of scientific writing: Linguistic features and historical context. London: Equinox.
Harris, Roy. 2003. History, Science and the Limits of Language. Shimla: Indian Institute of Advanced Study.
Harris, Roy. 2004. The Linguistics of History. Edinburgh University Press.
Harris, Roy. 2005. The Semantics of Science. London: Continuum.
Halliday, M. A. K. 2004. The language of science. London: Continuum.
Hyland, Ken. 2009. Academic Discourse: English in a global context. London: Continuum.
Martin, James R. & Richard Veel. 1998. Reading science: Critical and functional perspectives on discourses of science. London: Routledge.
Meyer, Paul Georg. 1997. Coming to know: Studies in the lexical semantics and pragmatics of academic English. Tubingen: Narr.
Montgomery, Scott L. 1996. The scientific voice. New York: The Guilford Press.
Nash, Walter (ed.). 1990. The writing scholar: Studies in academic discourse. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
Swales, John M. 1990. Genre analysis: English in academic and research settings. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.



Last updated: 2 July 2019