British National Corpus: SDA

The British National Corpus (BNC) as a sociolinguistic dataset: Exploring individual and social variation

Twitter hashtag: #BNCSDA

Start of the project: January 1, 2017 (duration: 16 months)

This ESRC-funded project will focus on secondary data analysis (SDA) of the spoken part of the British National Corpus (BNC).

The aim of the project is to investigate sociolinguistic variation in the British National Corpus and implement the results of the research in educational practice.  Particular attention will be given to speaker age as a sociolinguistic variable. As part of the project, free teaching materials will be developed for teaching sociolinguistics at the secondary-school level (A-level courses of English language) and in EFL/ESL classes.

 Specifically, the project outputs will be:

  • Novel research on different aspects of sociolinguistic variation in British English
  • Diachronic analysis of British English over the period of 20 years (using the BNC and the new BNC2014)
  • Online platform for carrying out sociolinguistic analyses for researchers and teachers
  • Corpus-based teaching materials on sociolinguistics

[more details coming up…]


Principal Investigator: Vaclav Brezina (LU)

Co-Investigator: Dana Gablasova (LU)

Co-Investigator: Tony McEnery (LU)

Co-Investigator: Miriam Meyerhoff (Victoria University of Wellington)

Project impact partners: AQA, CUP, The English and Media Centre,  Trinity College London and Ian Cushing