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Baltic Linguistics - Latvian

The course is directed towards those who are interested in Baltic linguistics, for example teachers, librarians, cultural workers and researchers in other subject areas.

The course consists of an introduction to the history of the Baltic languages, linguistic method, grammar and phonetics. In addition, an overview of the development of the Baltic languages and their internal relationships is presented.

  • Course structure

    The course consists of an obligatory, general part and an elective part, where the student chooses a specific topic within Latvian linguistics in cooperation with the examiner.

    Teaching format

    Instruction is in the form of lectures and seminars.

    The language of instruction is English.
    Instruction is either as distance learning or on campus, according to how the course event is defined.

    Course requirement: participation in discussions and seminars via Skype, Zoom, the university education platform or other web-based service. A time limit for submitting written assignments are obligatory aspects of the course. The completion of the obligatory aspects are a requirement in order for the student to participate in the following examination.

    Learning outcomes

    Having completed the course the student has the ability to:

    • account for the history of the Baltic languages
    • account for the phonetics and orthography of the Baltic languages
    • account for the grammar of the Baltic languages, specifically for the Latvian language
    • account for the development of Latvian written language


    Examination takes place through submitted assignments and participation in discussions and seminars. Continual examination takes place through written assignments submitted in connection with each respective seminar.

    The principles for weighting together the two examination assignments are explained in the grading criteria.


    Peteris Vanags

  • Schedule

    The schedule will be available no later than one month before the start of the course. We do not recommend print-outs as changes can occur. At the start of the course, your department will advise where you can find your schedule during the course.
  • Course literature

    Note that the course literature can be changed up to two months before the start of the course.
    1. Algirdas Sabaliauskas: We the Balts. Vilnius 2005.
    2. Pietro U. Dini: Foundations of Baltic Languages. Vilnius 2014. (Selected chapters - available on Athena)
    3. Zigmas Zinkevicius: The History of the Lithuanian Language. Vilnius 1996.
    4. Materials handed out in class
    5. Articles and works chosen in cooperation between the examinator and the student.
  • Contact

    If you have any questions concerning the course, please contact Lilita Zalkalns (