Morphology is the study of the structure of words. It is also the discipline of linguistics that interfaces with phonology, syntax, and semantics since words have phonological properties that are affected by how they are put together to form sentences and phrases, and take on meaning based on their relationships to other words with a phrasal context. Several sub-categories that students will encounter include word coinage, word-relatedness, word construction, word retrieval and production, morphological processes such as affixation, compounding, as well as inflectional and derivational rules. Inflectional rules account for grammatical categories such as tense, mood, voice, aspect, person, number, gender, case. Derivational rules show how new words are formed.
It is crucial that the linguistics student master the parts of speech and their properties such as whether or not a noun is in the ‘closed’ or ‘open’ class of words, or whether a preposition is a ‘lexical’ or ‘functional’ word.
Check out our Morphology tutorial articles for extra support and don’t forget to look up any terms you are not familiar with in our glossary! Once you are comfortable with basic knowledge, try your hand at our exercises!
Remember that Level 1 is for the novice and Level 2 is for more advanced students.