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Transcription Conventions

By Emanuel Schegloff

Transcribed data extracts embody an effort to have the spelling of the words roughly indicate how the words sounded when produced. Often, this involves a departure from standard orthography. In addition, the following symbols can be used to convey aspects of the tal that figure most fre!uently as design features of tal "in"interaction. #or other transcription resources not included here, see the sources cited at the end of this document.


Arrows in the margin point to the lines of transcript relevant to the point being made in the text. Empty parentheses indicate talk too obscure to transcribe. Words or letters inside such parentheses indicate the transcriber s best estimate of what is being said or who is saying it. !he letters #eft$side brackets indicate where overlaping talk begins. &ight$side brackets indicate where overlapping talk ends. 'rackets should always appear with one or more other brackets of the same sort (left or right) on the line(s) directly above or below to indicate which turns are implicated in the overlap. Words in double parentheses indicate transcriber s comments( not transcriptions. +umbers in parentheses indicate intervals without speech in tenths of a second, a dot in parentheses marks an interval of less than ().-). A hyphen indicates an abrupt cut$off or self$interruption of the sound in progress indicated by the preceding letter(s) (the example here represents a self$interrupted .because/). 1olons indicate a lengthening of the sound 2ust preceding them( proportional to the number of colons. 4e says 3nderlining indicates stress or emphasis( proportional to the number of letters


hhh .hhh "

((coughs)) ().*)(.)


000 3nderlining

underlined. ? An upward$pointing arrow indicates especially high pitch relative to preceding talk, a downward$pointing arrow indicates especially low pitch relative to preceding talk. &ight and left carats (or .more than/ and .less than/ symbols) indicate that the talk between them was speeded up or .compressed/ relative to surrounding talk. E8ual signs (ordinarily at the end of one line and the start of an ensuing line attributed to a different speaker) indicate a .latched/ relationship $$ no silence at all between them. 9f the two lines are attributed to the same speaker and are separated by talk by another( the 7 marks a single( through$produced utterance by the speaker separated as a transcription convenience to display overlapping talk by another. A single e8ual sign in the middle of a line indicates no break in an ongoing spate of talk( where one might otherwise expect it( e.g.( after a completed sentence. !alk appearing within degree signs is lower in volume relative to surrounding talk. 3pper case marks especially loud sounds relative to the W;&< surrounding talk. =unctuation is designed to capture intonation( not grammar and should be used to describe intonation at the end of a sentence or some other( shorter unit. 3se the symbols as follows0 ? 8uestion mark for marked rising intonation, . period for marked falling intonation, and ( comma for a combination of slightly rising then slightly falling (or slightly falling and then slightly rising) intonation, These notational conventions were developed by $ail %efferson. &n instructional Transcription 'odule accompanied by digiti(ed sound is available athttp)**www.sscnet.ucla.edu*soc*faculty*schegloff* #uller glossaries can be found in Structures of Social Action, edited by %.'. &t inson and %. +eritage ,-ambridge .niversity /ress 0123) ix"xvi45 in Interaction and Grammar, edited by E. Ochs, E.&. Schegloff, and S.&. Thompson ,-ambridge .niversity /ress 0116)360"6745 and in $. %efferson8s article, 9$lossary of Transcript Symbols with an Introduction,: inConversation Analysis: Studies from the First Generation, edited by $. ;erner ,%ohn Ben<amins /ublishing =>>3)0?"?0.


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