Lucas Champollion
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Introduction to Semantics
New York University
This website contains complete sets of teaching materials for an undergraduate-level introduction to semantics. This course provides an introduction to truth-conditional, compositional semantics of natural language. It has a formal component that introduces set theory, propositional logic, and predicate logic. Using these tools, the course investigates various natural language phenomena, such as nominal and verbal modifiers, referential expressions, quantifiers, tense and aspect, modals, propositional attitudes, presuppositions and implicatures, focus, and indexicals. The course is based primarily on Paul Portner’s textbook ‘What is Meaning? Fundamentals of Formal Semantics’, and draws on some additional sources such as Elizabeth Coppock and Lucas Champollion’s draft textbook ‘Invitation to Formal Semantics‘ and various handbook articles.

The original version was developed by Maria Esipova and Lucas Champollion and taught as LING-UA 4 ‘Introduction to Semantics’ at NYU Linguistics in Fall 2017 and Fall 2018. It was subsequently adapted by Nadine Theiler for a slightly shorter course without a teaching assistant and without recitation sections and taught as LING 3410Q ‘Semantics’ in Fall 2019. Theiler’s version is posted on this website, and the materials from the original version can be downloaded as zip files linked under the corresponding tabs.

Instructors who wish to access the course materials in the restricted area of the site should contact Lucas Champollion at [email protected].
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