Dialect Discrimination

By Shaun Connell, updated on May 3, 2023

We recently surveyed 3,000 job applicants in the United States to determine how many people alter their accents during job interviews due to concerns about dialect discrimination. Check out the infographic below for the interesting results.


Key Findings

In our survey, we found that a staggering 38% of job applicants admitted to 'softening' their regional accents during interviews to avoid negative stereotypes. This phenomenon was most prominent among applicants from Western New England (51%), South Midland (50%), and New Jersey (47%).

It's worth noting that research from the University of Chicago and the University of Munich has shown that individuals with strong regional accents face a wage penalty of up to 20% compared to those with a "standard accent."

This wage gap is equivalent to the gender wage gap, highlighting the significant impact of dialect discrimination on people's lives and careers.

As language and communication experts, we at WritingTips.org believe that everyone should feel confident in expressing themselves authentically, regardless of their regional accent. To help promote a more inclusive and understanding workplace, we encourage employers to recognize the value of linguistic diversity and to be mindful of any unconscious biases that may influence their decision-making processes.

Survey Methodology

Online panel survey of 3,000 adults based on age, gender, and geography. Internal data sources are used to obtain population data sets. We used a two-step process to ensure representativeness through stratified sampling and post-stratification weighting.]

Our goal with this survey is to raise awareness about dialect discrimination and to promote an open and inclusive dialogue on the issue. We hope that by sharing these findings, we can contribute to a more equitable and understanding job market for all.

Feel free to check out our other resources including our free online grammar book, our collection of English idioms, and our guides to confusing words.

We encourage you to share this article on Twitter and Facebook. Just click those two links - you'll see why.

It's important to share the news to spread the truth. Most people won't.

Written By:
Shaun Connell
Shaun Connell is the Founder and CEO of Connell Media and WritingTips.org. Shaun began his career as a freelance writer and eventually started his own website and media company using a small army of freelance writers. Shaun’s entire career has been dedicated to writing and publishing.

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