Definition of variationist in US English:



  • A person who studies variations in usage among different speakers of the same language.

    • ‘Language variationists study how languages vary along geographical or social lines or along lines of age and gender.’
    • ‘We hope that this cooperative dialogue between variationists and theorists will facilitate more collaborative research and increase our understanding of morphosyntactic variation.’
    • ‘Horvath is a variationist sociolinguist whose work on Australian English is internationally recognized for its comprehensiveness and methodological acuity.’
    • ‘Thus, variationists try to discover patterns in the distribution of alternative ways of saying the same thing, i.e. the social and linguistic factors that are responsible for variation in ways of speaking.’
    • ‘A problem for variationist research lies in identifying what ‘counts’ as syntactic variation.’