English is an important global lingua franca, spoken by an estimated 1.5 billion people as a first, second or foreign language and used by three times as many non-native speakers as native speakers. Linguists are confident that the future of English will be determined by its non-native users outside the borders of traditionally English-speaking countries. A truly global language, adapting to new global contexts, English is currently undergoing great flux. There has never been a more exciting time to study the English language.

AH LING102: Introduction to English Linguistics has two broad goals: (1) to introduce students to basic concepts, tools, issues and debates relevant to the study of linguistics (generally) today; and (2) to teach students how these apply to the English language specifically. Goals (1) and (2) are reached together, by using the English language as a case study through which many of the most relevant introductory concepts in linguistics are explored. In this way this course both prepares students to advance in their study of linguistics generally whilst simultaneously deepening understanding of the structure and function(s) of English. As the authors of the course textbook state: “[I]t is impossible to study the English language without also doing linguistics.”