Linguistic Variation



At the end of the course students should be acquainted with: 

  • An overview of some hot topics that are currently being investigated in formal approaches to linguistic variation
  • current theoretical and empirical perspectives on the linguistic variation related to the phonology-syntax and phonology-morphology interfaces
  • current theoretical and empirical perspectives on the linguistic variation related to the lexicon-syntax interface.


1. Linguistic variation at the phonology-syntax and phonology-morphology interfaces (Prof. Eulàlia Bonet) 

2. Linguistic variation at the lexicon-syntax interface (Prof. Jaume Mateu)


Linguistic variation at the lexicon-syntax interface: the typological distinction between satellite- and verb-framed languages, the typology of motion events and resultative constructions, the Compounding parameter, argument structure alternations (e.g. locative alternation, causative alternation, accusative vs. dative alternation in psych-verb constructions), unergative vs. unaccusative constructions, applicative constructions, possessive and existential constructions, the typology of {eventive/resultative/stative} participles, i.a.


Two short essays (about 7 pages) on a topic to be agreed upon between the students and the instructors. Class attendance and participation in the discussion will also be taken into account.

Students will have to read some texts on the different topics covered by the course, using a brief list of reading assignments that will be provided at the beginning of each part of the course. 

Students having obtained a final grade below 5 (range 3 - 4.9) can be re-evaluated by redoing the short essay. If passed the final grade will be 5.


Examination-based assessment

Under exceptional and justified circumstances a single examination (100% of the grade) can be scheduled. Re-evaluation of this assessment can only be considered for students having failed with grades ranging from 3 to 4.9. The maximum final grade can only be 5




Acedo-Matellán, Víctor & Jaume Mateu (2015). “Parameters and argument structure I: motion predicates and resultatives". In A. Fábregas, J. Mateu & M. Putnam (eds.).  Contemporary Linguistic Parameters. 99-122. New York: Bloomsbury.

Acedo-Matellán, Víctor, Jaume Mateu & Anna Pineda (2022). “Argument structure and argument realization”. In A. Ledgeway & M. Maiden (eds.). Cambridge Handbook of Romance Linguistics. 491-518. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Cuervo, M. Cristina (2015). “Parameters and argument structure II: causatives and applicatives". In A. Fábregas, J. Mateu & M. Putnam (eds.).  Contemporary Linguistic Parameters. 123-146. New York: Bloomsbury.

Demonte, Violeta (2016). “Parámetros y variación en la interfaz léxico-sintaxis”. In Á. J. Gallego (ed.). Perspectivas de sintaxis formal. 391-425. Madrid: Akal.  

Levin, Beth & Malka Rappaport Hovav (2019). “Lexicalization patterns”. In R. Truswell (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of Event Structure. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Previous version downloadable at 

Picallo, Carme (ed.). (2015). Linguistic Variation in the Minimalist Framework. Oxford & New York: Oxford University Press.