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SSar's Beast
The first section of my Ling 326 (Danish) assignment has 11 footnotes, to 7 different sources. It's only 342 words long.
This is how persnickety it is.

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Wow. I once sent an email to my head of faculty/convener that had about five citations for a 200 word paragraph, but 11 footnotes is impressive!

I like using Harvard, with its' brackets, and how I no longer have to bother with footnotes, endnotes, or anything. It's just me, my direct references, and the appendices ^_^

Ooooh yeah. I tried to slavishly stick to the Style Guide, so I've got bracketed citations every 2 sentences pretty much ;_; Just a looooong list of facts with a wee summy up paragraph at the end of each set.

... I got nothin'. Mine was basic, blunt, and really short. But I answered the questions, dammit!

I salute you. I don't know if I'm answering the questions. I'm just throwing random facts at them.

I bet everyone in the class chose segment B, too.

*eyes glaze over* ... Remind me?

I don't think you want me to.
I don't think you want to think about it until you have to get your marks back.
(I don't think you will really want to think about it then either.)

This is true. Oh wait, the question paper is in front of me. You are correct, I did b. Also c, e (LOL worst answer I've ever written, I needed a seventh), f, g, h, j (second worst answer ever), and l.

Uhoh, I'm just about to tackle e. Then again, I have the enormous Faroese grammar book, and the Basboll (can't be bothered doing special characters) book of Danish phonology, in front of me. Sadly, I cannot well understand the Basboll book. I literally do not speak its language.

More seriously, this assignment annoys me because it's so totally unrelated to what we do in class. The "Danish language" lessons are simple and imprecise without imparting general principles or techniques. "This is a translation of this phrase" neither serves to teach Danish nor to illustrate Germanic. The "Do a worksheet" lessons have no standards. I did the "Germanic tribes background" worksheet using four books from the library. I did the next one using stuff I vaguely remembered plus my other class's textbooks. Both were accepted.

I am nicknaming this class "Teach yourself Danish" because "Teach yourself" honestly seems to be the byline. Then again, is this what 300-level is meant to be? Tell me, o wise and advanced one. Remember the only other 300-levels I've taken were with the wonderful Christine.

See, on some level this is similar to what we've been doing in Beowulf - we had a smidgen of grammar and vocab at the beginning, and from then on it's been all "do the translation and pick things up from there". But this ... no, this does not seem to be the same level of work, and a bit, unfortunately, aimed at people with substantial Linguistics backgrounds rather than those of us coming from different directions, like German or Old English.

To be honest, my answer for (e) was entirely a creation of re-phrasing the question, working out the grammar with the help of Wikipedia of all things, and then looking up the relevant passage in the Germanic Languages e-book we have access to (and seriously, go to the Vic Library website NOW and use it, it's mega handy). So nothing hugely indepth or intellectual.

Then again, I've noticed that this is Laurie's general approach - you are meant to have perfect recall of everything taught in Ling 211, and any gaps in your knowledge must be immediately supplemented. This is what he expects as the knowledge base. This is fair.

What I guess I object to is the deceptively easy level of the classes we attend. I think we could get a bit more out of them if he called for a higher standard for the worksheets, or, in the Danish language class, said things like, "Did anyone flick through the Essential Swedish Grammar? It says this at this point... Oh, you did? What did you think of X?" And so on.

Yes, Harbert is utterly useful. My jaw dropped when I read "The indefinite article originated from the numeral 1" - phrased nearly that simply, whereas all other books had just vaguely hinted at this. He just goes along and states these things, all matter-of-fact. Shamefully I did not know about this book five days ago.

Hey, just realized that I never added you back. I'm back online, and I shall fix that problem immediately. :)

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