As a public service, we have decided to put together an extensive list of heuristics useful for anyone wishing to pursue a career in linguistics and related fields. This, at least, should reduce the chance of readers falling foul of that dread disease: academicus expatriatus.1
No area with the prefix post- or the suffix –
Never give data to a theorist.
If you study a language no one else speaks, all your conclusions are automatically correct.
If no one understands you, you can never be wrong.
In any given paper, remember that sentence length is inversely proportional to how much the author actually knows about their topic.
The most useful part of any paper is the bibliography. This is also, perhaps even especially, true of Wikipedia articles.
If in doübt üse an ümlaüt.3
Once you begin to redefine terms, anything is possible.
At conferences, it is rude to point out data flaws...
The word interesting never actually means “interesting.”
A paper in the journal is worth two with the reviewers.
Never bite the hand that funds you.
Learn the Rochambeau of dissertations:
If you agree with anyone’s definition of any term, you have probably misunderstood them.
There is nothing left to do in English syntax (except, hopefully, that one topic you’re thinking of doing).
If you accidentally stumble into the literature department, do not make eye contact.
The department colloquium will be more tolerable if you keep reminding yourself that the presenter probably wouldn’t understand what you’re studying, either.
The relevance of a presentation to your research is directly correlated to the quality of free food on offer during the presentation.
1 Not to be confused with the snail Alycaeus expatriatus Blanford or the arachnid Sandokan expatriatus (formerly Oncopus expatriatus2).
2 See p. 731 of Schwendinger, Peter J. (2007), “A taxonomic revision of the family Oncopodidae VII. A new Oncopus species (Opiliones, Laniatores) from eastern Kalimantan, Revue suisse de zoologie, Vol. 114, pp. 729–
3 If the umlaut doesn’t fit, you must æçƣüıţ.
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