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Table of Contents

A second edition of Data Collection in Sociolinguistics is in preparation,
with an expected publication date of Fall 2017. Stay tuned!

Methodologies for data collection are central to the study of social variation in language. With a focus on real language, a primary aim of sociolinguistics is to create and refine methods for the collection of data that reflects spoken and written language in use.

Data Collection in Sociolinguistics: Methods and Applications provides up-to-date, succinct, relevant, and informative discussion about methods of data collection in sociolinguistic research. Our volume will contain longer chapters as well as shorter vignettes written by top sociolinguists, both veteran and emerging scholars.

Our volume includes four parts:  “Research Design,” “Generating New Data,” “Working With Existing Data,” and an innovative final section, “Sharing Data and Findings,” which treats issues of data preservation and access as well as linguistic gratuity, or the growing concern among sociolinguists that scholars “give back” to the communities they study.  Our text therefore not only details methods of data gathering but also of data sharing, exploring how researchers communicate with a wide variety of public groups and research participants while still maximizing the use of the data to address research questions of both academic and lay interest.

Routledge has generously provided open-access, downloadable PDF’s of the foreword and Chapters 1, 4, 10, 15, and 19. Just click on each title to read the PDF. In addition, some of the chapters and vignettes in this volume have accompanying teaching tools created by the authors. Check out each teaching tool, linked to the corresponding chapter/vignette below, or click here to visit our teaching tools page.

Table of Contents (1st edition)

A revised Table of Contents for the second edition is coming soon!


Foreword: Observing the Observers (J.K. Chambers, University of Toronto)

Part I:  Research Design

Chapter 1:  Research Design (Christine Mallinson, University of Maryland, Baltimore County)

Chapter 2:  Ways of Observing: Studying the Interplay of Social and Linguistic Variation (Barbara Horvath, University of Sydney)

  • Vignette 2a:  Multidisciplinary Sociolinguistic Studies (Marcia Farr, Ohio State University)
  • Vignette 2b:  How to Uncover Linguistic Variables (Walt Wolfram, North Carolina State University)
  • Vignette 2c:  How to Uncover Social Variables: A Focus on Clans (James N. Stanford, Dartmouth College)
  • Vignette 2d:  How to Uncover Social Variables: A Focus on Social Class (Rania Habib, Syracuse University)

Chapter 3:  Social Ethics for Sociolinguistics (Sara Trechter, California State University, Chico)

  • Vignette 3a:  Responsibility to Research Participants in Representation (Niko Besnier, University of Amsterdam)
  • Vignette 3b:  Conducting Research with Vulnerable Populations (Stephen Mann, University of Wisconsin-La Crosse)
  • Vignette 3c:  Ethical Dilemmas in the Use of Public Documents (Susan Ehrlich, York University)
  • Vignette 3d:  Real Ethical Issues in Virtual World Research (Randall Sadler, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Part II: Generating New Data

Chapter 4: Generating New Data (Becky Childs, Coastal Carolina University)

Chapter 5:  Ethnographic Fieldwork (Erez Levon, Queen Mary University of London)

  • Vignette 5a:  Fieldwork in Immigrant Communities (James Walker, York University, and Michol F. Hoffman, York University)
  • Vignette 5b:  Fieldwork in Migrant and Diasporic Communities (Rajend Mesthrie, University of Cape Town)
  • Vignette 5c:  Fieldwork in Remnant Dialect Communities (Patricia Causey Nichols, San José State University)

Chapter 6:  The Sociolinguistic Interview (Kara Becker, Reed College)

  • Vignette 6a: Cross-Cultural Issues in Studying Endangered Indigenous Languages (D. Victoria Rau, National Chung Cheng University)
  • Vignette 6b:  Conducting Sociolinguistic Interviews in Deaf Communities (Ceil Lucas, Gallaudet University)
  • Vignette 6c:  Special Issues in Collecting Interview Data for Sign Language Projects (Joseph Hill, Rochester Institute of Technology) This vignette is accompanied by a teaching tool – click here!
  • Vignette 6d:  Other Interviewing Techniques in Sociolinguistics (Boyd Davis, University of North Carolina at Charlotte)

Chapter 7:  The Technology of Conducting Sociolinguistic Interviews (Paul DeDecker, Memorial University of Newfoundland, and Jennifer Nycz, Georgetown University)

Chapter 8:  Surveys: The Use of Written Questionnaires in Sociolinguistics (Charles Boberg, McGill University)

  • Vignette 8a:  Language Attitude Surveys: Speaker Evaluation Studies (Kathryn Campbell-Kibler, Ohio State University)
  • Vignette 8b:   Cultural Challenges in Online Survey Data Collection (Naomi S. Baron, American University)

Chapter 9:  Experiments (Cynthia Clopper, Ohio State University)

Part III: Working with and Preserving Existing Data

Chapter 10: Working with and Preserving Existing Data (Gerard Van Herk, Memorial University of Newfoundland)

Chapter 11:  Written Data Sources (Edgar Schneider, University of Regensburg)

Chapter 12:  Data Preservation and Access (Tyler Kendall, University of Oregon) This chapter is accompanied by a teaching tool – click here!

  • Vignette 12a:  Making Sociolinguistic Data Accessible (William A. Kretzschmar, Jr., University of Georgia)
  • Vignette 12b:  Establishing Corpora from Existing Data Sources (Mark Davies, Brigham Young University)
  • Vignette 12c:  Working with “Unconventional” Existing Data Sources (Joan C. Beal, University of Sheffield, and Karen P. Corrigan, Newcastle University)

Chapter 13:  Working with Performed Language: Movies, Television, and Music (Robin Queen, University of Michigan)

  • Vignette 13a:  Working with Scripted Data: A Focus on African American English (Tracey Weldon, University of South Carolina)
  • Vignette 13b:  Working with Scripted Data:  Variations among Scripts, Texts, and Performances (Michael Adams, Indiana University)

Chapter 14:  Online Data Collection (Jannis Androutsopoulos, University of Hamburg)

Part IV. Sharing Data and Findings

Chapter 15: Sharing Data and Findings (Christine Mallinson, University of Maryland, Baltimore County)

Chapter 16:   Community Activism: Turning Things Around (Arapera Ngaha, University of Auckland)

Chapter 17:  Sociolinguistic Engagement in Schools:  Collecting and Sharing Data (Anne H. Charity Hudley, The College of William & Mary)

  • Vignette 17a:   Beyond Lists of Differences to Accurate Descriptions (Lisa Green, University of Massachusetts, Amherst)
  • Vignette 17b:  Linguistic Flexibility in Urban Zambian Schoolchildren: A Case Study of Data Collection in Sociolinguistics (Robert Serpell, University of Zambia)
  • Vignette 17c:   Engagement with Schools: Sharing Data and Findings (Donna Starks, La Trobe University)

Chapter 18:  Sociolinguistics in and for the Media (Jennifer Sclafani, Hellenic American University and Georgetown University)

  • Vignette 18a:  Media Interest in Sociolinguistic Endeavors (Scott F. Kiesling, University of Pittsburgh)
  • Vignette 18b: Sociolinguistics on BBC Radio (Clive Upton, University of Leeds)
  • Vignette 18c:   Media, Politics, and Semantic Change (Andrew D. Wong, California State University, East Bay)

Chapter 19:  Conclusion (Christine Mallinson, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Becky Childs, Coastal Carolina University, and Gerard Van Herk, Memorial University of Newfoundland)

One Comment leave one →
  1. Celso permalink
    May 27, 2013 2:57 pm

    Thank you for the book, and for making those chapters available. I’ve added a link to this page in (EDiSo – Asociación de Estudios sobre Discurso y Sociedad), and

    Celso Alvarez Cáccamo

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