An Investigation into the Transition from the High School to the College Setting for Students Who Speak Lumbee Vernacular English

UNCP Author/Contributor (non-UNCP co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Amber Hester (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP )
Web Site:
Dr. Teagan Decker

Abstract: There is a belief that some English dialects are superior to others, and regional dialects that differ from the standard are often seen as corrupt forms of language. In the educational system, educators’ lack of knowledge regarding linguistic diversity often results in language oppression. The purpose of this research is to inform educators about linguistic diversity in an attempt to end language oppression. The research sought to answer how students who spoke Lumbee English Vernacular navigated the transition from the high school setting to the college setting. To answer the major research question, the research also explored how educators handled linguistic diversity in classrooms and the implications of language diversity in the educational setting. To answer these questions, the researcher conducted interviews with four participants, 2 males and 2 females, who were undergraduate students at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke and had attended Robeson County Schools. These interviews highlighted the differences between participants being aware of a dialect that deviated from standard English prior to attending college and participants who became cognizant of their dialects once they arrived on campus. The analysis of the interviews confirmed that students who had knowledge of their dialects prior to attending college had an easier time acclimating to the university environment and expectations because they adapted code-switching prior to arriving on campus; however, the participants who were not aware of their dialect prior to attending college had a difficult time in the transition to the university setting because they had to learn to code-switch while learning about the expectations of the new environment.

Additional Information

The Graduate School
Language: English
Date: 2018
Standard English, English Dialects, Regional Dialects, Lumbee Vernacular English, Linguistic Diversity, Language Oppression, Language Discrimination, Language Acclimation, Educational Settings, Classrooms, Lumbee Tribe, University of North Carolina at Pembroke

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