(Northern Cities Shift area)

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English 4720: Development of Modern English
Dr. Lisa Minnick

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last updated on Sunday, November 14, 2010, at 12 noon

Homework is due Monday, November 15
(click here for assignment)
Quiz is Wednesday, November 17

Week 11: Protocols for empirical research; developing your research question.
Nov 15-17

Monday, Nov 15: Homework 4 due.

  • Ethical research protocols and informed consent.
  • Research questions, hypotheses, and methodologies: starting a linguistic feld project.
  • Working-group activity 3 (begin): Developing and articulating your research question.

Wednesday, Nov 17: Quiz 4 and working-group activity 3 (complete): Developing and articulating your research question. Proposals due at end of class period.

Week 12: Continue work on collaborative projects
Nov 22-24

Monday, Nov 22: Work on collaborative projects.

  • Ways to get answers to your research question and support your hypothesis.
  • Developing data collection instruments and analysis methods.
  • Principles of experimental design and participant selection.
  • Gathering and analyzing data.

Wednesday, Nov 24: No class. Release time to work on projects.

Week 13: Work on collaborative projects.

Nov 29-Dec 01

Monday, Nov 29: Work on collaborative projects.
Wednesday, Dec 01: Work on collaborative projects.

Week 14: Present and discuss collaborative projects.
Dec 06-08

Monday, Dec 06: Begin project presentations.
Wednesday, Dec 08: Complete presentations; review for exam. Collaborative projects due.

Week 15: Final exam Wednesday, December 15, 8-10 a.m.


Readings on the Northern Cities Shift:

1. The Northern Cities Shift web resource, by Norma Mendoza-Denton and Sean Hendricks (University of Arizona):

2. "The Vowels They Are a-Shiftin," by University of Missouri linguist Matthew Gordon, from the PBS series "Do You Speak American?"

In addition to the official assigned readings, you might find the following video and radio interviews useful. They both feature Bill Labov, a linguistic researcher at the University of Pennsylvania who has worked extensively on language variation in the US, including the Northern Cities Shift. Enjoy!