Scholars and students affiliated with the sociolinguistics program make up the Sociolinguistics Laboratory at NYU. Core faculty members include RenĂ©e Blake, Gregory Guy, and Laurel MacKenzie. John Singler, who retired in 2015, is very present in the department as well, and Louise Vasvari and Zvjezdana Vrzic regularly teach in the department.

The Sociolinguistics Laboratory has been especially active and productive in the field for the last two decades. Our faculty and students work on a wide range of topics regarding language variation and change. We conduct fieldwork locally in New York City communities and across the United States, as well as around the world.  We have an interdisciplinary focus and aim to engage with other subfields of linguistics, related disciplines, and researchers outside NYU.


Within our department, we work closely with students and faculty in other subfields of linguistics.  In particular, NYU sociolinguistics intersects with phonetics, phonology, and syntax, and many students collaborate with our phonetics/phonology faculty (Lisa Davidson, Gillian Gallagher, and Maria Gouskova).  We also hold occasional lab meetings in conjunction with the MorphBeer research group and Syntax Brown Bag series, and encourage cross-subfield research.

Our work is also strongly informed by related disciplines.  We collaborate with the Anthropology Department at NYU through the Working Group in Urban Sociolinguistics to sponsor talks and workshops by scholars in the field. We also have ties with linguistic anthropologists Bambi Schieffelin and Sonia Das.

Finally, we aim to connect with other linguistics communities, both locally and globally.  The proximity of the City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate Center allows for regular engagement with the CUNY linguistics community, including Cecilia Cutler, Bill Haddican, Michael Newman, Ricardo Otheguy, and Arthur Spears. The NYU Sociolinguistics Lab has also hosted visiting scholars from around the world.

Questions or comments? Contact the Sociolinguistics Lab Manager, Sarah Phillips.