Etymology – ENGL 634

CG • Section 8WK • 07/01/2018 to 12/31/2199 • Modified 12/12/2022

Course Description

This course is an advanced study of the etymology of the English language, analyzing changes in vocabulary, syntax, and development into a world language. 

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


The student of the English language is a student of its language arts, of reading and writing, and of its literature, and therefore of the stuff of which the language is made, its grammar and its vocabulary.  The English vocabulary is the largest of any language in the world, containing words borrowed principally from Greek, Latin, and French, but also from its other European neighbors, as well as from language all around the globe.  A study of the history of the words of the language is a study of the cultures and the historical developments that have made the language what it is.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.

Discussions (5)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student will take part in five discussions that relate the study of etymology to the practice of the Christian reading of Scripture. Student threads should be at least 350 or 500 words in length and students should write two replies of at least 200 words each (CLO: A, C, D). 

Essay Assignments (2)

There are two essays in this course that should be 2000–2500 words in length. The first is on word histories and the second on the influence of Christianity on the vocabularies of English. Student essays should reflect an appropriate level of research and should be documented in MLA or APA format. Focus for these essays should be on insightful analysis and clear articulation (CLO: A, D). 

Quizzes (3)

There are three quizzes for the course assessing skills in terminology, history, and application of words borrowed from Greek and Latin. The quizzes are timed and contain multiple choice, true/false, and short essay answers. (CLO B, C, D, E)

(CLO: B, C, D, E).