Construction Grammar for students: A Constructionist Approach to Syntactic Analysis (CASA)

Thomas Herbst 1  and Thomas Hoffmann 2
  • 1 Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg,, Erlagen, Germany
  • 2 Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt,, Eichstätt, Germany


Over the last 30 years, our insight into mental grammars has radically changed with usage-based constructionist approaches providing cognitively- and psychologically-plausible models of language processing and use. And yet, these models have had practically no impact on language teaching at school or university level. With our CASA (‘A Constructionist Approach to Syntactic Analysis’) project, we now want to address this issue. As outlined in the present paper, we propose a constructionist model for the analysis of complex, authentic utterances that will equip pupils, students and teachers with an up-to-date scientific model of human language.

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The Yearbook of the German Cognitive Linguistics Association documents the exchange of ideas in the Cognitive Linguistics research community and related fields, not just in Germany but all over the world. It brings together researchers from a variety of theoretical and methodological frameworks, whose work is informed by a broad view of language both as an integral part of human cognition and as a set of socially situated communicative practices.