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Scots Language Centre Centre for the Scots Leid

Speaking Scottish launched

19th March 2021

A new very commendable website has recently been launched by Elly Darrah and Thomas Flower to assist and inform those in Scotland who have English as an additional language – or EAL speakers for short. Technically speaking, an EAL speaker is anyone who was first raised speaking a language other than English but who then learned English as an additional tongue later in life.

Darrah and Flower have rightly highlighted an issue long prevalent in Scotland in which people who have come to live in the country find a significant disparity between the English they have been taught and the language(s) actually spoken on the streets of Scotland. This is because courses in English generally do not inform the learner that in Scotland three other tongues – Scottish Gaelic, Scots, and Scottish Standard English – are spoken.

As a result, EAL speakers often find that the academic English they have received does not prepare them for communication within the local community where, say, Scots, or Scottish Standard English, are the everyday form of communication, and so they struggle to understand the different idiom, phrases and vocabulary.

Darrah and Flower have now established a website called Speaking Scottish which is run on a voluntary basis. Its aim is to connect with, help, and inform EAL speakers who may be struggling with the language(s) of their local Scottish community. If you have an interest in this area and would like to help and perhaps contribute learning materials or audio recordings of words and phrases then Darrah and Flower would like to hear from you.

Speaking Scottish can be contacted by email at or you can follow them through @speakingscottish on Facebook and Instagram or @learnScottish on Twitter.

An audio version of this story in Scots is available below.

  • Speaking Scottish launched