Global Engagement > Partnerships > Programs for Partner Institutions > Linguistic landscapes in Chicago and Quito

Linguistic landscapes in Chicago and Quito

​​​​​​​​​​Project Summary​​​​:​

A linguistic landscape is a study that analyzes the public use of written language in a particular area. The languages present on “public road signs, advertising billboards, street names, place names, commercial shop signs, and public signs on government buildings" (Landry & Bourhis, 1997, p. 25) and the uses to which those languages are put can reveal much about the relative status of different linguistic varieties and attitudes toward them in society, especially in contexts of bi- or multilingualism.

In this GLE project students conducted their own linguistic landscape project in groups composed of 2-3 DePaul students and 3 Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador ​(PUCE) students. Each group was assigned an area of their respective city to investigate. Each university's students carried out fieldwork in their own city, then came together with their international partner to produce a video comparing their findings across the two cities. ​

​​Project Length:

  • ​​​9 weeks​​​

​Technolog​y Tools Used:

  • ​​Moodle
  • Zoom
  • WhatsApp
  • OneDrive

Interaction M​​​ode:

  • Asynchronous
  • Synchronous

Learning Outcom​​es:

  • ​Students compared the linguistic landscape of Chicago and Quito, analyzing the public presence of Spanish, English, Kichwa, and other languages in bi-/multi-lingual contexts.​​​

Faculty Feedback: ​​

"​​The students really enjoyed making personal connections with peers abroad, and it enabled them to learn about a Spanish-speaking country and use their Spanish in ways that can’t be replicated otherwise in the classroom.​​​​​" ~Brad Hoot

"Through the project, the students were able to realize that the more they searched for differences between the two cities, the more they found they had in common; not only linguistically, but also personally. Now Quito means something to the DePaul students, and Chicago to the PUCE students." ~Janine Matts

Brad Hoot

Brad Hoot

Institution: DePaul University
Discipline: Modern Languages: Spanish
Course name: Bilingualism in the Spanish-speaking world


Janine Matts

Janine Matts

Institution: Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador
Discipline: Linguistics
Course name: Languages in contact


Partner Institution

DePaul University
Chicago, IL, United States


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