First Advisor

John Hellermann, PhD

Date of Award

Spring 6-2024

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Applied Linguistics and University Honors


Applied Linguistics




Conversation Analysis, Improvisation, Status, Language Pedagogy


A single-case analysis looked at two individuals performing a scripted exercise during an Applied Improvisational workshop. The analysis examined how performers modify their linguistic and embodied actions in order to perform an assigned status role. The analysis was undertaken to better understand how social status can be constructed in everyday talk-in-interaction. I first outlined the three major theoretical frames that are relevant to the analysis: Applied Improvisation as a pedagogical approach, the use of Conversation Analysis (CA) for the analysis of language in educational contexts, and the concept of status from a sociological perspective. I then present a single-case study, which employed multimodal CA to examine the linguistic strategies utilized in the construction of high and low status in a scripted exercise. The two performers seemed to have similar linguistic behaviors when performing status. Low status role assignments often saw performers producing more pausal phenomena, non-lexical markers, and restarts; and high statue role assignments often led to a greater frequency of creaky voice in utterance-final position. Gestural changes were also analyzed and their relationship to a given status assignment was examined. In the conclusion, the implications of these findings and the potential for improv as a context for future linguistic research are discussed.