The module purposely explores the borderlines of communication and language in order to give an insight into the mutual dependence of these powerful systems. Issues studied include the idea of language as a communication system, which, in addition to examining the characteristics of language which make it such an effective communication system, such as arbitrariness, will also include discussion of the semiotic ideas which bridge together linguistic and communication concepts. Language exists primarily as sound, and we will look at this characteristic through the International Phonetic Alphabet and the recording of sounds and through our social assumptions based on the sounds we make in using accents and dialects. Language is an impressively rule-governed system, most notably by grammatical and semantic rules, and we will look at how these rules operate through phrase structures, sentence meanings and forms, and compare them with Shimanoff's ideas about communication rules. As a system language is in a process of continuous renewal, and language change, productivity and methods of word formation will allow us to examine that process. Thematically, the various approaches will be linked by the idea that language shapes us and our understandings, and is fundamentally the way in which we create meaning.