VOCS is happy to announce the publication of our first paper in the journal Language in Society: “Third culture kids in the outer circle: The development of sociolinguistic knowledge among local and expatriate children in Singapore.”
This paper examines local and expatriate children’s social evaluation of some of the English dialects present in Singapore. We conclude that both local and expatriate children in Singapore are able to identify the geographic origin of dialects from quite early on in life, but that expatriate children hold an advantage at the age when they are first entering school. We also find that expatriate children attending local schools have intuitions about dialects that are closer (but not identical) to those of Singaporean children, relative to those attending international schools, and that children generally associate dialects with occupations based on their sense of that dialect’s overall prestige level.
Stay tuned for future publications focusing on perception of Mandarin dialects, and on children’s language development!