Course Information: Grammar and Usage of English (INGL 3205)
Course location: Chardón 324, University of Puerto Rico – Mayagüez
Course meetings: Section 020 –> M, W, F at 8.30 – 9.20 AM; Section 030 –> M, W, F at 9.30 – 10.20AM.
Office location: OF 109
Office hours: M, W, F (1.00 – 3:00 PM) By appointment
Email: katherine [dot] morales1 [at] upr [dot] edu
I completed my Bachelor’s degree in English Linguistics right here, at the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez. My mentor was Dr. Liz Dayton, a variationist sociolinguist known for her work on the grammar of African American Vernacular English. She encouraged me to pursue graduate studies abroad, where I would be able to attain the knowledge and training necessary to become a well-rounded social linguist.
Accordingly, I earned my Masters degree from the University of Edinburgh (Scotland) and my Ph.D. at Trinity College Dublin (Ireland) in English Sociolinguistics. Both my Masters degree and Doctor’s degree thesis investigated the type of English spoken in Puerto Rico.
For my Masters thesis, I conducted a sociophonetic investigation of high front and high back lax vowels in fluent speakers of English at the University of Puerto Rico. I compared this data to demographic and ideological information elicited from forms, questionnaires, and sociolinguistic interviews.
For my doctoral investigation, I sought to describe the unequal distribution of Englishes (bilingualism) in the schools of Puerto Rico. I observed two schools for a period of six months. During this time, I conducted systematic observations and interviews of students and teachers. This allowed me to arrive at a better understanding of the linguistic form and social function(s) of English on the island today. I surveyed students from different social, economic, and educational backgrounds based in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico. My study produced a corpus of more than 150,000 words of bilingual speech (60+ hours of speech) and was deemed a “major contribution to studies of bilingualism in colonial contexts” by thesis examiners. If you’d like to learn more about my findings and ongoing publications, click here.
SPECIAL NOTE: I am always looking to recruit new participants to my study of island Puerto Rican English. If you are interested in taking part of this study, please let me know!