Range of Linguistic Features that Typify Spoken Communication

Range of Linguistic Features that Typify Spoken Communication


In this assignment, an attempt has been made to understand the linguistic features that would vary on the basis of various factors like the gender and the purpose of communication. Communication can be formal and informal and when engaged into spoken communication, linguistics takes an important role. These linguistics features can vary according to the situation one is in as well as the dialect and the area they belong to. Moreover, the variations can also take place because of gender variations. Thus, the assignments take an attempt to understand the variations in linguistic features due to various factors with the help of the analysis of the extracts.

Variations in Linguistic Features

There are certain theories that concentrate on the several varieties that the language creates, among the various parts of the community. There are also some that concentrate on the universal features that are common for all the human languages. It is the theory of variation that elaborates on the several usages of popular languages across the world and the regional permutations and smaller dialects inside the regional boundaries (Edwards and Mercer, 2013). It takes into consideration the lexicon, stylem structure, dialect and discourse.


Lexicon comprises of a book of terms and words that are stored in the mind of the speaker. It comprises of the bound morphemes and words that belong to the part of the words that cannot stand along such as the affixes. In certain analysis, compound words as well as a few classes of idiomatic expressions and additional juxtapositions are also a part of the lexicon. Dictionaries typify the attempts at listing the lexicon of a particular language in alphabetical order. However in this, the bound morphemes are not encompassed. Closely related to the area of semantics, lexicography is the science that maps the words into the dictionary or encyclopaedia. A few addition as well as creation of new words is considered to be coining as well as the new words are regarded as neologisms (Koester and Handford, 2013).

It is usually thought of that the capacity of the speaker is present in the quantity of the words that are included in the lexicon. However, this is sometimes regarded as a myth among the linguistics. The ability to use the language is regarded as to lie mainly in the area of grammar and they can be related to the competence instead of growth of vocabulary.


A discourse is regarded to be the manner in which an individual speaks that arises within a specific social environment and is dependent upon a particular subject matter. As seen in extract A, the social setting was a family party where the problem of discussion was to cool the bowl of fruit punch quickly. The tone of conversation in such a particular situation was very casual and informal since it involved the discussion among the family members in a family get together. On the contrary, in extract B, the situation becomes where the individual is asking for help and hence the variation is in the tone where it becomes very formal and pleading (Miller and Kelly, 2016).

A specific discourse takes the form of a language variety when it is deployed in the manner for a particular purpose and therefore is regarded as a register. In extract B, whenever a person is asking for assistance, the tone is polite and simple. There are chances for some lexical additions that are used due to the proficiency of the society of individuals within an area of specialisation. For instance, in extract C, there are certain words that have been added in the conversation that takes place between the senior female nurse and young doctor at the nurse station. It is analysed from this extract that the gender of the nurse as well as her experience made the young doctor use polite and soft linguistic features since they were conversing at the nurse station, where the senior female nurse has respect and dignity.

Therefore discourses and registers differentiate themselves with the help of use of vocabulary and at certain times with the help of use of style also. Those in the medical community may use certain medical terminology in their communication that is related to the field of medicine. This is usually considered as a part of medical discourse (Swales, 2014).


A dialect is considered to be a variety of language that is representative of a specific group amongst the language speakers. The hordes of individuals who are speakers of a specific dialect are frequently related to each other with the help of social identity.This is what separates dialect from discourse or register where the latter does involve the role of cultural identity. Dialects are speech variations that include their own phonological and grammatical rule, stylistics features as well as linguistic features however it has not been regarded as an official language. In extract A, the conversation takes place among the family members where the dialect is of major importance. The linguistic feature changes since the conversation is taking place in an environment where the dialect is common among the parties (Berman,, 2016).


The linguistic features also vary according to the linguistic structures. These are pairings of form and meaning. Any specific pairing of form and meaning is regarded as a Saussurean sign. For example, the meaning of cat is indicated across the globe with a huge variety of several sound patters taking into consideration the spoken communication (Oh, He, Jeng, Mattern and Bowler, 2013).

Linguists that concentrate on the structure make an attempt to comprehend the rules related to the language use that the regional speakers recognise. All the linguistic structures can be segregated into element parts that are integration as per the subconscious or conscious guidelines over a various level of analysis. For instance, in regards to extract C, the linguistic structure was related to the medicinal field since the conversation took place between the nurse and the doctor who belong to the same community.

Taking into consideration the internal work structure that is the morphology, the word “tenth” is comprises of one linguistic form that indicates a number as well as another type that indicates ordinality. The guideline that governs the combination of these types makes sure that the ordinality marker “th” is followed after the number “ten”. However when taking into consideration the sound structure that is the phonology, the structural analysis indicates that the “n” sound in the “tenth” is developed differently as compared to the “n” sound in the “ten” spoken separately. Even though majority of the English speakers are consciously aware of the guidelines that govern the internal structure of the word pieces, they are usually less aware of the rules that govern the sound structure (Eades, 2015). Therefore the linguistic features concentrate on the structure and identify and analyses the rules that govern the spoken communication of the native speakers.

Linguistics comprise of various sub-areas that are related with the specific aspects of linguistic structure. As suggested by Noam Chomsky, the theory explicates these on the basis of generative theory. These sub-fields vary from those concentrating mainly on the form to the ones that concentrate on the meaning. It also comprises of a range of level of analysis of the language from distinct sounds to phrases, to words to cultural discourse. For instance, in Extract B, the word “yeah” is considered to be American English where is in UK English it is “yes”. Another example that is indicated in Extract C is the unclear utterance and the emphatic stress with the help of use of capitals. It also indicates that the use of incomplete words means that the spoken communication was rather hesitation to converse (Silwa and Johansson, 2015).


Relativists consider that the structure of a specific language is the ability of the language to influence the reasoning patterns with the help of which the individual forms his or her view of the word. On the other hand, the Universalistsconsider that there are cohesions between the individual insights as there is in the capacity of human for language whereas the relativists consider that this differs from the language to language as well as individual to individual. Taking into consideration Extract C where the young doctor is speaking to the senior female nurse in the nurse department regarding the pathology tests, it is observed that broken words as well as unclear utterance indicates the changes in tone to whom the person is talking and also the environment and the experience. Since the young doctor had less experience than the senior female nurse, even though the doctor is higher in the organizational structure, it is seen that he was kind and consideration and was hesitant to speak to the nurse rudely to show respect and take into consideration the seniority of the nurse in her department.


Stylistics takes into consideration the study as well as the interpretation of the texts for features of their linguistic as well as tonal style. The analysis of the style of the spoken communication involves the analysis of the description of the specific registers as well as the dialects that the speech communities use. The linguistic features related to style comprise of diction, rhetoric, satire, stress, dialogue, irony and various other types of phonetic variations. The analysis of style also comprise of the analysis of language in canonical works of popular fiction, literature, advertisements, news and various other types of communication in popular culture (Chang and Huang, 2015). It is usually perceived as a variation in communication that alters from speaker to speaker as well as community to community.

Taking into consideration extract A, it is analysed that when considering the spoken conversation among the family members in a social gathering, the style of linguistic features comprise of various phonetic variations. Similar is the case in extract C where the stress was on the capitalising of words to show empathy towards the seniority of the female nurse. Taking into consideration the conversation between the customer and the shopkeeper as seen in Extract B, the style of spoken conversation changes. Here, the customer is in need of the books and requires help and therefore uses soft conversation style whereas the shopkeeper to retain its customer speaks in an assistive tone. Therefore, it is the situation and the speaker’s gender as well as experience that define the style and tone of spoken communication.


In conclusion, it is seen that there are various linguistic features that influence the spoken communication. Discourse, dialect and style of language are the most influential variations of the linguistic features. Hence when taking into consideration the spoken communication form, there is a need to understand the variations that usually changes according to the speaker, community as well as the experience of the person in a specific situation.

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