Information for Instructors


The Linguistics Beyond the Classroom (LBC) program serves to introduce students to advanced research in linguistics and other language-related fields, and to create a pool of participants for studies in these fields. Similar programs exist in the Linguistics Departments of other univerisities.
All sections of Ling 102 are required to participate in the LBC program. All sections of Ling 150 typically include the LBC as one of the LiC options. Please read this document carefully, and follow the “To Do List” at the end.

Instructors of other Ling and SLS courses are encouraged to participate and follow the same To Do List.


Program Description


  1. Students will view media (e.g., a DVD or podcast) or participate in one research project. (Somewhat different options apply
    to Unit Mastery students — see the Unit Mastery materials for details.)
  2. LBC participation will be required for all students enrolled in Ling 102,
    and worth 5% of the grade for all lecture sections. Students do not have to complete the
    requirement to pass, but those who fail to complete it will lose points in the course.
  3. All LBC activities must contain a clear educational component appropriate
    for undergraduate students. A suggested media list is available at the Media page. The LBC committee
    reviews research projects for appropriateness for the program. Researchers are required to provide educational handouts (written debriefing/feedback forms) to all
    participants; these must be written in language accessible to in undergraduates in
    introductory linguistics courses or similar language-related courses.
  4. Examples of research projects: Student is recorded producing sentences in
    their native or non-native language, student gives judgments on grammatical vs.
    ungrammatical sentences in their native or non-native language, student participates in
    sociolinguistics interview, student participates in phonetics experiment.
  5. The LBC committee will ensure that at least one research project per
    semester will be made open to any student who must fulfill the LBC requirement (although
    the number of participant slots may be limited). Other research projects may place limits
    on participants, such as age or native language.
  6. At least one appropriate media option or comparable activity must be
    provided. Failure to provide alternatives to participating in research is a violation of
    research ethics and could jeopardize the LBC program and other research involving human
    subjects at UH. Instructors are free to edit the suggested media list to remove media that will be part of the regular course content, or make other additions or deletions to tailor it to the course content. All approved media must be part of the
    regular or reserve holdings of the Sinclair library or otherwise readily available free of
    charge to UH students.
  7. Each instructor must provide the LBC committee with the approved media list
    for the class by the last day to add classes, so that the committee can verify that all
    students have some option other than participating in research projects. Please see the LBC Notification Form.
  8. Research Project Option: Students fill out a brief participation
    credit questionnaire after participating in activities.
  9. Media Option: Students write a 500-word summary of the contents of a media
    file (or collection of short files) and how it relates to class.
  10. Research project participation questionnaires will be submitted to course
    instructors, who will use them to keep track of credit for the students. The questionnaires
    are also submitted to the LBC committee and the project researcher(s), who will get
    feedback from the forms.
  11. Media summaries will be turned in to course instructors, who will use them
    to keep track of credit for the students. The summaries are also archived on the LBC site for instructors concerned about
    violations of academic honesty.
  12. Instructors are free to grade the questionnaires and summaries with a
    credit/no credit system or with letter grades, as best fits their class, although it is
    recommended that instructors use a credit/no credit system. One-page summaries (written
    debriefing/feedback forms) of research projects approved for the LBC program will be available from
    the LBC committee for instructors who wish to review them before grading research project
  13. Approved research projects will be limited to those in which filling out
    the participation credit questionnaire would not subject the student to social or emotional
    risk (e.g., by identifying the student to his/her instructor as a member of a stigmatized
    category). All research projects must have completed review with the UH Committee on Human
    Subjects before they can be approved by the LBC Committee.
  14. Research projects are approved on a rolling basis. A website listing research project options is
    updated throughout the semester.
  15. Instructors of other linguistics or SLS courses may opt into the program by
    notifying the LBC committee prior to the end of the add/drop period.
  16. Any student, faculty member or visitor in the Departments of Linguistics or
    SLS may request using participants from the LBC participant pool. Requests will be considered based on a
    supply-and-demand basis.
  17. The Linguistics Beyond the Classroom committee will consist of at least one
    faculty member from Linguistics and one from SLS.
  18. The LBC committee will approve research projects for the program, maintain web pages for the program, maintain and distribute a list of suggested videos, and manage the announcement of research projects approved for the program. Instructors can see
    feedback forms for approved studies by logging in to the feedback form page.
  19. The committee will create questionnaires for
    students to fill out after participation, to submit to their instructors to get credit.
    Researchers will request the number of forms needed from the committee.
  20. The committee will work with the UH Committee on Human Studies to verify
    that the LBC program is in compliance with regulations on the use of human subjects.
    Individual investigators will still be responsible for completing a human subjects review
    for each research project.

To Do List for Instructors

1. For LING 102 instructors: State on your
section syllabus that 5% of the grade will be based on LBC participation.

For all other instructors: State on your syllabus how
much of the grade will be based on LBC participation, and whether this counts towards
regular credit or extra credit.

2. Decide on a penalty (or not) for no shows. No-shows are students who sign up
to take part in a project and then don’t show up. No-shows waste a study slot, blocking
other students from choosing that slot, wasting the time of the researcher, and letting a
lab reservation go to waste. You might want to penalize no-shows by only giving them
partial credit when they do participate or deducting points from their grade.

3. Fill out the LBC notification form by the last day to add classes. If you are adopting a specialized version of the media list for your section, submit it to the LBC committee by the last day to add classes. First login in to your UH account, then click the link for the LBC Notification Form.

4. In class, refer students to the student tab on the LBC website.

5. Distribute an approved media list to your students, or use the one suggested by the LBC

6. Remind students to sign up early in the semester if they choose to take part in
a project. Participation slots are limited and studies are often only open for a
limited time, so students may not get to take part in a project if they wait too long.

7. Emphasize to your students that the LBC enhances the course, and give them
examples of how it can do so. Some examples of how it enhances the course include:

a. providing more direct experience with how researchers collect data

b. being able to interact with researchers

c. learning about different research questions

d. discovering new ways of looking at language through, for example, noticing
trends in experimental stimuli

e. learning about research that can’t easily be shown in class

8. Grade media summaries and research participation forms as they are sent to you. Files are archived/distributed automatically by the LBC website and require no further action from you once you have graded them.


Thank you for your assistance with this program! If you have any questions,
comments, concerns, or suggestions for improvement, please direct them to:

Amy Schafer, Katie Drager, or Theres Gruter

Linguistics Beyond the Classroom Committee