I primarily teach courses about sociolinguistics, language variation and change, and quantitative methods. I variously teach the following undergraduate courses at UTM:
An introduction to linguistic variation and its social implications, especially the quantitative study of phonological and grammatical features and their correlations with place, age, gender, ethnicity, social class and other social variables.
Language and Gender, JAL355
Language and gender are intricately interconnected. The goal of the course is to develop an understanding of the ways in which language and conversational interaction vary by gender and to critically examine how cultural beliefs about gender, sex, and sexuality are reflected in language. Working within a socially-informed perspective, topics will include the connection of gender to standard speech and linguistic variation and change, gendered patterns in conversation, politeness, and meaning making, and the interaction between language, gender and other aspects of identity.
Talking Numbers, LIN318
Do numbers and statistics make your vision go blurry? Do you avoid making eye contact with charts and tables? From measuring vowel formants to gradient grammaticality judgements to frequencies and patterns in natural language corpora, research in linguistics is becoming increasingly dependent on quantitative data and argumentation… but fear not! In this course, students with little or no prior background in statistics will learn the fundamentals of quantitative reasoning through hands-on experience with contemporary statistical tools and will become equipped with the basic numeracy skills necessary to critically evaluate quantitative arguments in a range of subfields of linguistics. This course is intended for students with little or no prior background in statistics.
English World Wide, LIN357
The best estimate of linguists suggests that English is spoken (natively and non-natively) by around one billion people today. This makes it the most widely spoken language in the world. Within this language exists a high degree of global dialect diversity. In this course, we will examine the structure and history of Englishes around world including British, North American, Antipodean, Caribbean, African, and Asian varieties. Students will also consider structural and sociolinguistic issues associated with English as a global language including creolization, post-creolization, the diffusion of innovation, language policy, and the linguistic effects of colonialism.
Analyzing Sociolingusitic Variation, LIN458
All languages, in all linguistic domains, exhibit variation – more than one way of saying the same thing. This variation is not random but dependent on various linguistic, social, and cognitive conditioning factors. This course explores the theory and practice of analyzing such sociolinguistic variation. Students will receive hands-on instruction in fieldwork methods for collecting natural speech data and quantitative methods for analyzing patterns in that data.
I also teach a graduate seminar in language variation and change in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Toronto.
As a postdoc and graduate student I also taught the following courses:
- English Words
- Historical and Comparative Linguistics
- Introduction to Language
- Sociolinguistic Patterns
- Quantitative Methods
- Urban Dialectology