The field of sociolinguistics has a great deal in common with the field of forensic linguistics. One of their primary similarities is a focus on linguistic variation. Both fields analyze variation across groups of speakers, variation within speakers, variation between speakers, variation over time, and variation in perception. Sociolinguistic research can be directly applied to forensic linguistic issues. Model research projects are presented to demonstrate how to combine sociolinguistic and forensic linguistic goals and techniques into unified projects. This paper highlights how sociolinguists can advance the field of forensic linguistics in the United States.
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