Swamped with your writing assignments? Take the weight off your shoulder!
The purpose of this exercise is to write about a feature or question that may be interesting from a
sociolinguistic point of view. Your observation can be based on any kind of language material –
your own experience, a conversation you overheard, an audio recording, a video, a TV show, a
newspaper, a novel, an email message… In a nutshell, anything you encounter in your everyday
life. You will write a short summary of this observation, answering the three questions below. You
should draw on what we have learned in the course this semester in order to make your
observation and to demonstrate your understanding of how it relates to the concepts, previous
research, and methodologies that we have encountered.
Note that we are describing language use, not judging it, so avoid prescriiptive value
judgements and stereotyping.
Your observations do not have to be about English – in fact, you are encouraged to share
observations on other languages (though this is not a requirement).
A number of suggested topics are listed below, but observations related to any aspect of the
course material or sociolinguistics more generally are welcome.