The Pacific Northwest English Project

The Northwestern United States (including Washington, Oregon, Idaho andUtah) is the product of a rich history of Native American, European, Asian, and other influences. The Pacific Northwest English (PNWE) project explores the extent of English dialect development in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States.

The story of the Pacific Northwest is one of constant settlement and immigration. Although a few pockets of historically-isolated communities can be found, most of us live in places where our voices intermingle with people of different backgrounds.

Two hundred years after Lewis and Clark's historic voyage to the Pacific coast, has the Northwest been established long enough to have unique dialect features? Has the history of ongoing settlement made the Pacific Northwest the truest of American melting-pots? How much have Native Americans, Scandanavians, Asians, East-coast Americans, and other groups impacted the speech of this region? Read more about the project

You are Invited to join the study!

RSVPIn the Northwest, do we speak differently than other Americans? Is there a "Northwest Dialect?" If you would like to help us find out, please join the study.

How do you say?


Tell Your Story Do you speak American?


Social scientists estimate the number of varieties of American English range from a basic three - New England, Southern and Western/General America - to 24 or more. Some researchers suggest the number is actually much higher. Visit the PBS Web Site
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All material copyrightedUniversity of WashingtonSupported by the National Science Foundation BCS-0643374, BCS-1147678