Three Levels of Structure of Language

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Language is described as an organized system or manner of arranging words to create meaningful utterances in order to communicate with others, It one of the most necessary skills in human life. Although there are many languages spoken around the world and they all differentiate from each other, they all share some basic common features. Language permits communication between people, holds an arbitrary relationship between a symbol and what it represents, is regularly structured and only certain arrangements have a meaning, is structured at multiple levels and can be analyzed based on sounds, meaning units, words and phrases, is generative and productive permitting speakers to get creative and come up with novel words and phrases, and lastly it is dynamic and constantly evolving There are three levels of structure in language and the first is phonology which is devoted to sound.

A phone is a speech sound and a phoneme is the smallest unit of sound that separates words from each other.

These phonemes can be consonants or vowels. A consonant differentiates one word from another in the sense where one letter may change the meaning, It is important to be able to produce and distinguish a difference between consonants such as p & bi Pit and bit are two different words with two different meanings and they are changed by one phoneme Vowels on the other hand are focused on the representation of sound. Vowels produce vocal sounds without audible friction, meaning that when they are spoken the lips do not touch and the tongue and teeth don’t either.

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The second level of language structure is morphology, This involves examining meaning within languages. A morpheme is the smallest unit of meaning in a particular language, Some words are made up of multiple syllables however, when separated they are meaningless Root words contain the majority of the meaning and affixes contain the rest; the details.

Affixes can be suffixes (follow root) or prefixes (precede root). Morphemes can be free and stand alone or be combined. They can also be bound and only appear along with other morphemes to either modify (inflectional) or alter (derivational) the word, Linguists analyze content morphemes which contain most of the meaning of the word and function morphemes which show details and the word’s other abilities. The last level of language structure is syntaxt Syntax is the way we organize and arrange words to make meaningful sentences. Syntax allows us to truly communicate with each other. The way in which we put words together conveys a certain meaning. Sentences are comprised of: a noun phrase and a verb phrase.

The noun phrase contains at least one noun and it is often the subject of the sentence, The verb phrase or predicate contains at least one verb and the thing it acts upon. Just as semantics are an important component in morphology they are also significant in syntax. The meaning of words and sentences is critical to our understanding of language. To say that language combines arbitrary reference and structure to yield infinite creativity means that it is all up to us. We can create wonders out of language even with its arbitrary relationships between words and representations. We can make up a language as long as it contains the basic features mentioned previously. The rulers in language are there as guidelines butjust as any rules they can be broken and it leads us to infinite creativity.

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Three Levels of Structure of Language. (2022, Oct 22). Retrieved from

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