Faculty of Arts

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
Organisational UnitLinguistics
OfferedNot offered in 2014
Coordinator(s)Dr Simon Musgrave


Previously coded LIN3390


This unit examines the role of language in the construction of identity or identities, with a particular focus on gender identity. In addition the linguistic contribution to presentation and construction of ethnic and other identities will be examined. The examination of differences in the language use and communication patterns of the sexes focuses on:

  1. a variety of languages
  2. written and spoken texts
  3. public and private contexts including patient/doctor interaction, computer mediated interaction, interpersonal communication and educational settings.

The unit will also examine the cultural and social framing of identity, style shifting and acts of identity, and identity formation in language contact and second language learning.


On successful completion of this unit, a student will be able to:

  1. Summarize key theoretical debates in relation to identity and language
  2. Compare the approaches of theorists from different discipline backgrounds
  3. Reflect on gender differences across languages in the light of theoretical and empirical studies
  4. Evaluate major methodological approaches to the study of identity and language
  5. Work in teams to apply at least one methodology to a selected context
  6. Use data thus collected to support an argument in relation to theoretical debates
  7. Present a coherent oral and written account of research thus conducted.


Written work: 90% and Class participation: 10%

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

2 hours per week

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


Two gateway units in Linguistics, or a language, or English as an International Language, or Communication