Faculty of Social Sciences
Course Information


Instructor:  Prof. D.C. Walker
Office:  Social Sciences 1342; Craigie Hall D 414
Telephone:  220-7121
Electronic Mail:  dcwalker@ucalgary.ca           http://www.ucalgary.ca/~dcwalker/
Office Hours:  Monday - Friday 2:00 - 3:00 (in SS 1342) or by appointment

Course description:   Social differentiation of language in terms of the gender, socio-economic
                                         status and geographical distribution of speakers.

Time:  Monday - Friday 8:00 - 12:00 (Block Week Course, January 3 - 7), Room: SS 109

Textbook: Holmes, Janet. An Introduction to Sociolinguistics (second edition). Harlow: Pearson
                        Education Ltd. 2001.

Examinations:     Examination on pre-session study (Monday): 15%
                                One mid-term examination (Wednesday): 15%
                                One written report (5 pages maximum): 10%
                                Final examination (take-home): 60%

The written report is due on Monday, January 10.  The final examination is due on Friday, January 14.

N.B.: This is a Block Week course requiring concentrated work over a short period.  There is a pre-session study requirement covering pages 1 - 15 and 123 - 174 of the Holmes textbook plus Exercise 2 on page 3 and Exercise 4 on page 157.  The book will be available in the University Bookstore during the month of November.

All assigned work is due on time.  A missed report or examination will result in a grade of F unless a valid excuse is presented, in which case a redistribution of grades will be arranged.  There are no makeup examinations. Students should familiarize themselves with all relevant academic regulations, particularly those regarding academic misconduct, as published in the University Calendar.

Grading of Reports and Examinations: Work will be assessed and letter grades assigned using the undergraduate grading system described on pages 43-44 of the 2004-2005 University of Calgary Calendar.  The final grade in the course will be calculated using the grade point values corresponding to the individual letter grades.

Prerequisites: Linguistics 201/203 or 205/207.  A student may not register in any Linguistics course unless a grade of at least ‘C-’ has been obtained in each prerequisite for that course.

Undergraduate Advisor for Linguistics: D. Howe, SS 806; 220-6110.

Summary of topics covered


       Readings: Holmes, pp. 1 - 15, 123 - 174

DAY 2         Readings: Holmes, pp. 194 - 220, 223 - 257

DAY 3        Readings: Holmes, pp. 258 - 283, 342 - 365

DAY 4        Readings: Holmes, pp. 19 - 50, 51 - 72, 73 - 94


       Readings: Holmes, pp. 95 - 120, 366 - 380

New sites suggested by class participants, W '05

Some representative questions relevant to the study of sociolinguistics.

Some useful sociolinguistic terminology.

Some useful www sites dealing with sociolinguistics.

Some linguistic variables or other sociolinguistic phenomena suggested by class participants.

List of possible project topics.

Copy of consent form for use in classroom-oriented research projects.

Supplementary Readings:

Chambers, J.K and Peter Trudgill. 1998. Dialectology (second edition). Cambridge: CUP.
Chambers, J.K, Peter Trudgill and Nathalie Schilling-Estes. 2004. The Handbook of
       Language Variation and Change
. Oxford: Blackwell.
Coulmas, Florian, ed. 1997. The Handbook of Sociolinguistics. Oxford: Blackwell.
Coupland, Nikolas and Adam Jaworski, eds. 1997. Sociolinguistics: A Reader. New York: St.
        Martin’s Press.
Downes, William. 1998. Language and Society (second edition). Cambridge: CUP.
Eckert, Penelope. 2000. Linguistic Variation as Social Practice. The Linguistic Construction of Identity
        in Belten High. Oxford: Blackwell.
Hudson, Richard. 1996. Sociolinguistics (second edition). Cambridge: CUP.
Labov, William. 1972. Sociolinguistic Patterns. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
Macaulay, Ronald. 1994. The Social Art. Language and Its Uses. Oxford: OUP.
Milroy, Lesley. 1987. Observing and Analysing Natural Language. A Critical Account of
        Sociolinguistic Method. Oxford: Blackwell.
Milroy, Lesley and Matthew Gordon. 2003. Sociolinguistics. Method and Interpretation. Oxford: Blackwell.
Romaine, Suzanne. 2000. Language in Society. An Introduction to Sociolinguistics (second edition).
         Oxford: OUP.
Spolsky, Bernard. 1998. Sociolinguistics. Oxford: OUP.
Trudgill, Peter. 1995. Sociolinguistics. An Introduction to Language and Society. Harmondsworth:
Wardhaugh, Ronald. 1992. An Introduction to Sociolinguistics (second edition). Oxford: Blackwell.

Two Useful Glossaries:

Swann, Joan, Ana Deumert, Theresa Lillis and Rajend Mesthrie. 2004. A Dictionary of Sociolinguistics.
        Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press.
Trudgill, Peter. 2003. A Glossary of Sociolinguistics. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Some important sociolinguistics journals:

American Speech
International Journal of Bilingualism
International Journal of the Sociology of Language
Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages
Journal of Sociolinguistics
Language in Society
Language Variation and Change

Note: the bibliography dealing with sociolinguistics and related topics is enormous.  In addition to specialized journals, many discussions of sociolinguistic matters are found in general linguistic journals (Language, Journal of Linguistics, Lingua, Linguistics, Word, Folia Linguistica, Canadian Journal of Linguistics…).  Students with specialized interests in sociolinguistic questions should contact D.C. Walker.