Approaches to Scots in Speech and Text ENGLANG5128

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Critical Studies
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

The Scots language is one of the key features of the linguistic landscape in Scotland, past and present. This team-taught course introduces students to multidisciplinary approaches focussing on Scots in written and spoken texts, including phonology, sociolinguistics, lexicology, corpus linguistics and stylistics. It will explore a range of genres - from literary texts, through recorded interviews to online communication - in order to trace forms and functions of Scots and see how they depend on the medium.


10 x 2 hour weekly seminars as scheduled on MyCampus.


This is one of the MSc options in English Language and Linguistics, and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus

Requirements of Entry

Standard entry to Masters at College level (PGT)


Students should preferably have been exposed to some aspects of study on Scots. Students who do not have this background should contact the course convener for some recommended pre-reading.

Excluded Courses





4000 word essay on a selected aspect of form and/or function of Scots (80%)

10 minute oral presentation (20%)

Course Aims

This course aims to:


■ Engage with the Scots language as a means of written and spoken communication in Scotland from various complementary perspectives;

■ Critically assess the methodologies employed in analysing Scots; 

■ Carry out advanced analyses on different types of speech and text in Scots, according to the student's specialism.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Approach the study of the Scots language from various disciplinary perspectives;

■ Critically analyse methodologies employed in linguistic and literary analyses of Scots speech and text'

■ Appraise the challenges involved in analysing an unstandardised language in text and speech;

■ Apply the methods discussed to a variety of spoken and written Scots texts;

■ Present a coherent small-scale study of a chosen aspect of the use of Scots in speech and text from a selected disciplinary perspective.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.