It is agreed that language is a primary means of
communication that people use in daily life. In the Algerian workplace, like
everywhere else, communication is an essential tool to interact with others.
Algerian workers ensure that their messages are properly interpreted and that
is why they try to make their communication as simple as possible. Observing
their communication, it is noticed that sometimes they use more than one
language in an expression or a statement.
research is chosen to know more about Algerian workers’ code switching. There
from, our motivation in choosing a company is the use of code switching in a
normal situation. The investigation is going to be carried out from a
sociolinguistic point of view which will focus on statements or expressions
used by workers when they interact with others.
have a great tendency to mix two languages; they speak Arabic, suddenly, they
shift to French and, then, back to Arabic again. Code switching is a linguistic
phenomenon which is widespread among ordinary people in the Algerian society.
The problem investigated in this research is that Algerians, especially workers
have a great tendency to code switch. So, the questions posed here are
they code switch? and
is their preferable language?
to answer this questions we put forward the hypothesis that
workers code switch depending on the context and the interlocutor and,
preferable language remains the Algerian Arabic.
this research, we have worked with the company of Algérie Télécom Mobile
Mobilis in Sidi Bel Abbes. Mobilis, or ATM Mobilis a subsidiary of Algérie
Télécom which became independent in August 2003, is one of the three major
mobile operators in Algeria. According to the last statistics, Mobilis is the
leader in Algeria with 20 million subscriber.
code switching as a target subject in this research, both quantitative and
qualitative methods are used in this study. But we emphasize more on the
qualitative one. The research will be led through a questionnaire which will be
filled out by Mobilis workers and some recordings.
switching, among other dual language phenomena, is a common linguistic behavior
of Algerians. There might be reasons for this shift between languages.
Sometimes, there are no similar words in the other language or maybe the
speaker did not know the word he/she were looking for or simply, the shift is
done just to fill the gap in speaking. Some speakers find it easier to speak in
y the native language.
dissertation consists of an introduction and three chapters, each chapter contains an introduction and a
conclusion. Chapter one describes the code switching and its types and
functions. Chapter two is devoted to the methodology used, as mentioned above
the tools are questionnaire, recording and observation. In the third chapter
data collected are analyzed and interpreted.
This chapter aims at exploring some of the
sociolinguistic patterns of language use. It also aims at showing the way
sociolinguistic patterns work among individuals and state the factors which
determine the variability of language use. Within this scope, it is necessary
to shed some light on some important notions as: bilingualism, and code switching,
the main concern of the present work.
term Code Switching is used to refer to the switching between two or more different
languages in a single conversation. This occurs when the bilingual speaker uses
both languages in order to communicate with other person (hearer/speaker). It
happens consciously as well as sub-consciously.
other words, “Code Switching is the use of a first or third language within a
stream of speech in the second language” Brown (2007:139). It, often, occurs
between advanced learners subconsciously in a conversation with the use of
first –common- language. At the stage of acquisition, learners –usually- code
switch with some words from their native language because they feel that knowledge
is missing whether the addressee knows their native language or not. In such
case, the learner might “slip” with few words (one or two words) in order to
get the “gist” by the learner about what is communicated ,Brown (2007: 139).
the term Code Switching is used too to refer to switching through the different
varieties/ or dialects of the same language within the same conversation.
Hudson (1996: 51) defines Code-Switching as the consequence of, generally,
multilingualism. The language chosen by the speaker –who speaks more than one
language- depends on the circumstances and this language is what the hearer
understand. If the members of the multilingual community speak the same range
of the example of the Italian Situation where a speaker uses German within
family, Saurian –Italian dialect- within the village, and Standard Italian in
formal settings as schools, church, and work (Ibid.: 52).
switching has been differently defined. For Myers-Scotton (1993: 1), code switching
is “the alternation of linguistic varieties within the same conversation.” For
Savill-Troike (1976: 42-3), “code switching is the responses to the different
social relations that languages signals”. For Haugen (1956), code switching is
the variation between different languages (two or more), integration of using
words from one language instead of another one used by a bilingual speaker.
for Jacobson (1990:1), code switching is the alternative between language is
not considered in one way but it is examined in different ways by investigators
who avoid the possibility to define Code Switching. For Gumperz (1982: 59),
Code Switching is when speakers alternate between two or more varieties of the
same language within the same speech exchange of a given passage from the
of code switching
Several researchers have attempted to provide a
typological framework that accounts for the phenomenon of Code Switching. Poplack
(1980) proposed a well known framework that identifies three different types of
switching which are tag-switching, inter-sentential and intra-sentential.
inserting a tag or short phrase in one language into an utterance that is otherwise
entirely in another language. This type of Code Switching occurs the most
easily for the reason being that tags typically contain minimal syntactic
restrictions; thus, they do not break syntactic rules when inserted into a
sentence that is given in the L1(Hamers & Blanc, 2000). Tags include interjections,
fillers and idiomatic expressions. Examples of common tags used by Algerian
community “bon! (well!)”, “Saha (right)” and “ma3lich (don’t worry)”.
Inter-sentential Code Switching
involves switching at sentential boundaries where one clause or sentence is in one
language and the next clause or sentence is in the other. Eldin (2014) and
MacSwan (1999) state that since inter-sentential Code Switching takes place
within the same sentence or between speaker turns, it entails fluency in both
languages such that a speaker is able to follow the rules of the two languages.
An example of inter-sentential Code Switching between Algerian Arabic and French
is provided below: nt?ma?endk?m zhar, ce travail est trop demandé Translation:
You have the chance, this work is required.
Intra-sentential Code Switching,
according to Poplack (1980), is possibly the most complex type among the three,
as it can occur at clausal, sentential or even word level. A good example to
cite here might be the one given by Poplack as the title of one of her papers: e.g.
Sometimes I’ll Start a Sentence in English Y termino en espanol. Translation:
Sometimes I’ll Start a Sentence in English and finish it in Spanish
The three types of Code Switching illustrated above will
be considered in the analysis conducted in this study aiming to identify which
one of these is more frequent and also to look for plausible interpretations of
low and high frequencies of Code Switching types as used in the speech of
of code switching
Materials and Methods
2-2 The population
The study targets workers in Mobilis
Sidi Bel Abbes who are working in the technical field of network maintenance
and supervision. thirty worker participated in the questionnaire. The subjects
hold various qualifications . All the workers responded to the questionnaire
and agreed to have their linguistic behaviour observed but only three of them accepted
to have their voices recorded.
The questionnaire was designed to be
as short and brief as possible. The questionnaire starts with personal
questions that provide the researcher with information about the subjects. The second
section is concerned with identifying Mobilis workers’ perception of language
use. The third section identifies language situation of the subjects. The
fourth section spots the switch between languages. The questionnaire normally
takes 5-10 minutes to be answered.
recording and Direct Observation
emphasizes on short duration of tape-recordings in Mobilis Sidi Bel Abbes.
Moreover, many hours of observations were also conducted to record the workers’
linguistic behaviour during their working hours.
This work is done after leading an
interview with Mobilis workers. An interview is
a conversation where questions are asked and answers are
given. In common parlance, the word “interview” refers to a one-on-one
conversation with one person acting in the role of the interviewer and
the other in the role of the interviewee. The interviewer asks
questions, the interviewee responds, with participants taking turns talking. Interviews
usually involve a transfer of information from interviewee to interviewer,
which is usually the primary purpose of the interview, although information transfers
can happen in both directions simultaneously. One can contrast an interview which
involves bi-directional communication with a one-way flow of
information, such as a speech or oration.
3-2 Data collection
The duration of
the interviews … the location: Sidi Bel abbes, gender:…. time:. ..
3-3 Data Analysis
topic was about workplace code switching which its major aim was to prove the
hypothesis and the results shown that it is true to find Algerian workers, who
know more than one language, code switch depending on the context and the interlocutor
while maintaining their native language
as their preferable one.
research was divided into two parts: Theory and practice to facilitate the work
and give it a good picture in order to understand.
The first part consists of identifications of the
different elements of code-switching as an outcome of bilingualism, giving
their different explanations from different authors.
practical part contains a questionnaire that was filled out by Mobilis’ workers
and interviews with workers who were recorded to discuss their experience in work.
The data were analyzed in a sociolinguistic way to draw the final result and
compare it with the hypothesis which became true.