Languages and Dialects

19th Jul 2013

Public service interpreters provide accurate interpretation between patients, service users and professionals. They have a code of ethics they follow which includes patient confidentiality.

Different language communities have certain ways of talking that set them apart from others. Those differences may be thought of as dialects and not just accents, but also grammar, vocabulary, syntax and common expressions. Often a group that is somewhat isolated regionally or socially from other groups will develop a characteristic dialect.

Many people wonder, what’s the difference between a language and a dialect? There are no universally accepted criteria for distinguishing them. The difference is often a matter of degree rather than of kind. The dictionary of linguistics defines dialect as a variety of languages used by people from a particular geographic area. Many historical linguists view every speech form as a dialect of the older medium from which it developed from dialects of Latin. Other linguists point out the roles of historical and political developments in a formation of a dialect.

Regardless how one often defines them, dialects are a fascination and relevant to the general study of language differences.

The combination of differences in pronunciation and use of local words may take some English dialects almost native dialects of English are often divided by linguists into three general categories: British Isles, North America and Australasia.

For example, in the case of Chinese, variations such as Mandarin and Cantonese are often called dialects and not languages.

If you need more information about which dialect you may need for your language assignments, please contact Pearl on 020 7253 7700 or and our in-house team of professional linguists would be pleased to help!

Rubina Zaheer, Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, Mirpuri Interpreter (full time)


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