The study of language in written texts and transcripts of speech is helped by a student's ability to identify and describe those prominent features of the grammar which make one variety of English different from another. This book looks at many of the problems encountered by students and encourages them to find their own answers and to assess hypotheses about grammatical description. There are activities at each step, using authentic written and spoken data. The book has been revised and expanded for this edition, which contains additional chapters and materials. A new opening chapter discusses the concept of "grammatically correct English" and the differences between descriptive, prescriptive and proscriptive approaches to the writing of grammar books. The book is a systematic description of Standard English, and examples of contemporary spoken dialectal grammar are introduced and analyzed to illustrate the differences between standard and nonstandard usage.