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Language Learner's Field Guide
by Alan Healey (editor)
Originally published as:   Alan Healey, editor. 1975. Language Learnerís Field Guide. Ukarumpa, EHD, Papua New Guinea: Summer Institute of Linguistics Printing Department. 486 pages. 0-7263-0356-9.

© 1975 Summer Institute of Linguistics, Inc


Complete Table of Contents


This book is a systematic guide to investigating language and culture by Alan Healey, published in 1970. It gives specific guidelines for aspects of the language and culture to explore and also contains some general articles on field language learning. Although this work was mainly intended for linguists who would be investigating and describing unwritten languages, and was originally developed in Papua New Guinea, there are articles which should be of general interest.

Front Matter

Previously published articles
What do you expect?
Preparing for fieldwork
Surveying where to live
How to use this guide
The consecutive approach
The need-ordered approach
Two starting points
Kinds of learners
Learning without analyzing
Allocating your time
The first day

Part 1:. Day-by-day guide

Unit 1:. “What is his name?”; “Who is that?”; mimicry
Unit 2:. Greetings and farewells; intonation; tape file
Unit 3:. Dwellings; tracking; “What is this?”
Unit 4:. Tools; “What is that?”; equative clauses
Unit 5:. Review; anthropology file; dictionary file
Unit 6:. Village routines and leisure times; mimicry; verbs
Unit 7:. Conversation starters; person morphemes; pronouns
Unit 8:. Clothing; gifts; possessive forms
Unit 9:. Food; conversation and mimicry; “Whose is this?”
Unit 10:. “What is he doing?”; “What did he say?”; agreement
Unit 11:. Review; “Where?”; locationals; CV patterns
Unit 12:. Adornment; pictures; yes/no questions, and negatives
Unit 13:. Kin relationships; imperatives
Unit 14:. Workload; genealogies; “When?”; time words; tenses
Unit 15:. Another hamlet; transcribing; transitive clauses
Unit 16:. Communal work and authority; numerals; verbs
Unit 17:. Review; phonetic work charts; verb “to be”
Unit 18:. Use of fire; “Whom?”; verb affixes
Unit 19:. Pets; “Why?”; “Because”
Unit 20:. Art; emphasis; locationals
Unit 21:. Gift exchange; “How?”; instrumental phrase
Unit 22:. Review; gestures; tones
Unit 23:. Attitudes; intonation contours; prohibitions
Unit 24:. Recreation; plural nouns; residual pronouns
Unit 25:. Sickness and health; object pronouns; testing data
Unit 26:. Review; check lists; pitch, stress, and length
Unit 27:. Creative work; benefactives; “For whom?”
Unit 28:. Flora; hortatory constructions; verb stem formation
Unit 29:. Methods of communication; multiclause sentences; dependent verbs
Unit 30. Analyzing length, stress, and pitch; sentences
Unit 31:. Visiting; complex sentences in other modes
Unit 32:. Religion; descriptives; agreement
Unit 33:. Dancing; demonstratives; comparatives
Unit 34:. Collecting songs; different subject sentences
Unit 35:. Review; preliminary phoneme statement
Unit 36:. Social organization; accompaniment and locational constructions
Unit 37:. Life cycle; desiderative; purposive; reason
Unit 38:. Daily life in detail; vocatives; connectives
Unit 39:. Work patterns; embedded clauses; verbs of speech; cognition and perception; kin terms
Unit 40:. Review; morpheme classes; translation
Unit 41:. How to continue language learning
Unit 42:. Language learning away from the language area

Part 2:. Appendix

On learning monolingually1
The monolingual approach to studying Amuzgo
Learning Candoshi monolingually
Learning Xavante monolingually
Language learning
Language learning in relation to focus*
Grammatical drills
Programmed review cards
Language learning without tears
Stress-producing factors in cultural adjustment*
Obtaining linguistic data
Eliciting vocabulary, meaning, and collocations*
A method for eliciting paradigmatic data from text
On eliciting transformations in Vietnamese
Testing the recognition of utterance pairs
Collecting genealogies1
Using tape recorders
Plain card filing
Punch card filing
Page filing
List of words suitable for monolingual eliciting
Useful expressions

Back Matter

Progress charts
End of first week
End of second week
End of third week
End of first month
End of second month in the village
At the end of each month (after the second)
Classified list of topics for observation
Grammar topics
Phonology topics
Classification for cultural observations

Context for this page:

Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 3.5, published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 1999. [Ordering information.]

Page content last modified: 15 September 1998

© 1999 SIL International