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Psycholinguistics is the study of cognitive processes that support the acquisition and use of language.

It focuses on the first language, in studies of acquisition in children and in research on adult conprehension and production

In psycholinguistics, researchers try to develop models to describe and preferably predict specific linguistic behaviour. The aim is to capture all aspects of language use. The link betwen functional models and structures inthe brain are still underdeveloped.

Levelt used the term bluepprint which is th structure of the system as it really works in the brain but where and how it is located in the brain is still unclear.

Levelt speaking model aims at describin the process of language production from the development of communicative intentions to the articulation of the sounds. The component are three: 1. Conceptualizer 2. Formulator 3. Lemma and lexeme

Psycholinguistically, code switching and keeping languages apart are different aspects of the same phenomenon. In the literatura, anumber of proposals have been made on how bilingual speakers keep their languages apart.

The sub-set hypothesis can account for most of the data found. According to Paradis(1981) words from a given language form a sub-set of the total inventory.

In speaking, the step which is probably the most crucial is the matching of chunks from the pre-verbal message with the meaning part of lemmas, because here the transition from conceptualization to language specific coding takes place. In Levelt description, the lemma consists basically of three parts: a semantic specification, suyntactic information and a pointer to a particular lexeme.

The most common definition is that it is the study of language in society. However , sometimes sociolinguistics is considered as the study of linguistic indicators of culture and power.

Idiolect and sociolect

Individual language patterns=idiolect Groupal language patterns=sociolect

Satandarization is when a variety of a certain languguae is taken up and promoted as the standard form. Codification is a feature of standard forms:grammar books and dictionaries as examples.

Non-standard forms can be treted as poor and incorrect varieties. They are stigmatized. On the other hand standard forms receive prestige.

A standardized variety is usually a regional dialect. A dialect refers to the characteristics patterns of words and word-order which are used by a group of speakers. An accent can also be stigmatized.

The way people speak often serves to define them as a group. We can talk of the speech community, which might correspond with the group as defined by other non-linguistic means: nationality, age, gender, town or city population, political allegiance and so on.

Language element
Discourse Text Utterance Sentence Clause Phrase Word/lexeme Morpheme Sound/phoneme Letter/grapheme

Linguistic sub-discipline
Discourse analysis Text linguistics Pragmatics Semantics and syntax Semantics and syntax Semantics and Syntax Lexicology Morphology Phonology Graphology

The main tool in sociolinguistics has been the concept of the linguistic variable. This is any single feature of language which could be realized by different choices.

The linguistic variable feature could be a sound, or a word, or a phrase or a pattern of discourse and so on.

Althought the linguistics variable can be from any level of the linguistic rank structure, it is the variation in accent that has provided the major focus of sociolinguistic studies so far.

Linguistic variables operating at a grammatical level have also been studied in sociolingusitics.

Dialectal variation depends on different lexical items being used from region to region.

Variability in discourse organization is a very fruitful area of investigation at the moment. Strategies of conversational structure can be observed and analysed. Aspects of turn-taking, politeness and social solidarity represent another dimension of discourse organisation that can be explored.

Bilingual or multilingual individualism can often move from one language to another within a single utterance and sometimes even within a sentence. Sociolinguistics explores as well the deliberate attempts by government and authorities to engage in language planning:the promotion and standardization of one variety of language. Lastly, it explores the birth or death of languages.

Geographical and social mobility Age Gender and power Audience Identity Social network relations

Learning how to engage in discourse analysis isone of the most important goals in language learning and teaching. It studies texts wheter spoken or written, whether long or short, and is interested in the relationship between text and the contexts in which they arise and operate. It is linked to real texts.

Discourse analysis focuses on the following questions:

Participants 2. Relationships among participants 3. Power or knowledge between the participants. 4. Meaning of writers and speakers 5. Context

Discourse analysis is the analysis of language in its social context. Discourse analysts are just as interested in the analysis of spoken discourse as they are in the analysis of written discourse.

The significant contribution of discourse analysis is that it has demonstrated that both spoken and written discourse have consistent and describable structures, with different complexities refelcting the different functions of speech and writing in our culture.


conversational analysis



Interactional sociolinguistics Variation theory

Discourse analysis

Speech act theory


Structural functional linguistics Social semiotic Artificial intelligence

Critical discourse analysis is concerned with the realtionship between language, ieology and power and the relationship between discourse and sociocultural change.

These common features of spoken discourse mean that a grammar written solely on the basis of written texts, where such phenomena might be rare or completely absent, is incomplete. Equally, some structures which are common in writing may be very rare in everyday conversation.

Discourse analysts describe and analyze how language is structures in different contexts of use When modelling different types of writing, discourse analysis can help teachers to explain the underlying features of the text types associated with those types of writing In both teacher training programmes and for the teacher already in the classroom, models of analysis, such as the IRF, may serve to raise awareness of the nature of teacher-learner interaction Teachers can use insights from discourse analysis to better evaluate their own learners performance in classroom tasks, such as pair work and group work.