LING410-12W (C) Whole Year 2012

Variation Theory

30 points
20 Feb 2012 - 11 Nov 2012


Advanced study of aspects of the use of language in social contexts.

Until relatively recently, the points at which those interested in linguistic variation and those interested in linguistic theory had crossed paths over the course of their respective histories were fairly minimal.  In the first part of this course, we explore reasons for this separation in early linguistic theory and then consider the merits and consequences of more recent efforts to synthesise work on language variation with work on (both generative and usage-based) linguistic theory.  Of course, sociolinguistics is not ‘theory-free’ and a great deal of work in sociolinguistics has incorporated insights from theoretical advancements within the variationist tradition, sociology and social psychology.  In the second semester, we therefore explore the connections between studies of language variation and social theory.  In this course, we consider both variation and theory in the broadest possible sense, drawing examples from studies of synchronic and diachronic variation and change, at all levels of the grammar, and connecting with a range of different theoretical frameworks.

Learning Outcomes


Subject to approval of the Programme Director.

Streams Day Time Where Notes
Stream 01 Monday 1:00pm-2:00pm Locke 405 20 Feb - 1 Apr,
23 Apr - 3 Jun,
9 Jul - 19 Aug,
3 Sep - 14 Oct
Wednesday 1:00pm-2:00pm History 401 20 Feb - 1 Apr,
30 Apr - 3 Jun,
9 Jul - 19 Aug,
3 Sep - 14 Oct

Course Coordinator

Lynn Clark


Assessment Due Date Percentage 
Annotated bibliography (2) 20%
Final project 26 Oct 2012 60%
Poster presentation of final project 20%

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $1,502.00

* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences.

All LING410 Occurrences

  • LING410-12W (C) Whole Year 2012