Names and Naming Practices

Names and Naming Practices

Course dates:
7 August, 2023 to 17 August, 2023
EU/EEA citizens 3750 DKK/Non-EU/EEA citizens 9375 DKK
Fee advantages:
Full fee
Language, Multidisciplinary
Application deadline:
Saturday, 1 April, 2023
University of Copenhagen
Copenhagen, Denmark

General information

During this summer school students will learn about names and naming from a comparative, multidisciplinary perspective. Names constitute an essential part of cultural heritage. They are closely intertwined with the respective culture and reveal a great deal about the name-giving society. Names are primarily used to identify, they single out certain people, places or objects. However, consciously or unconsciously, names also contain a wide range of social connotations. Thus name choices directly reflect attitudes of language users towards the named entity. Despite their central position in language and communication, names rarely constitute an integral part of language studies. The summer school seeks to fill this gap. The course is open to Danish as well as international students and will be taught in English. It will be composed of lectures, workshops, and field trips in the Copenhagen area.

Departing from name-theoretical considerations (What constitutes a name? What are prototypical/less prototypical names? What qualifies to be named? Which grammatical peculiarities are observed?), we will in the second part focus on personal names (given names and surnames: naming motives, names as social markers, naming patterns across Europe, name regulation). A third thematic section will be dedicated to place-names (name types with different chronology, modern place-naming, linguistic landscapes, and place-name regulation).

It is recommended that participants should have a basic knowledge in linguistics (grammar and semantics), but we warmly encourage diverse academic majors to enrol to support an interdisciplinary approach. The course will be completed with each student having three weeks to prepare a 6-10 page written assignment on a self-selected topic (in English).


Please note that the summer courses are non-residential. Participants are responsible for finding and funding accommodation during their stay in Copenhagen.

You can use different online portals to search for accommodation, such as:

Hostel World

UCPH Housing Foundation (acceptance letter from UCPH required).


Application form

ECTS accreditation

Bachelor level

7,5 ECTS

Contact information

If you have questions about the course content, please write to