Many studies have been done on language attitudes, including attitudes toward languages in contact, various dialects of a language, nonnative speech, and attitudes of second-language (L2) learners toward the language that they are learning. Typically the studies of second-language learning deal with the attitudes toward the language in general rather than toward specific varieties within the language. The present study measures the attitudes of L2 learners of Spanish who lived in Spain, Mexico and Argentina toward native speakers from Spain and Mexico. The nonnative speakers listened to recordings of four native speakers, a male and a female from Spain, and a male and a female from Mexico, and rated each on a series of characteristics such as intelligence, education, attractiveness, work ethic, and honesty. T-tests were run to determine whether or not the time spent in one of the countries affected the attitudes toward each variety of Spanish. The results show that the judges had a tendency to give higher ratings to the speakers that they could understand the easiest. In addition, there was an overall tendency to rate both of the speakers from Spain higher, as was found in studies by Álvarez, Martínez and Urdaneta (2001), as well as Montes-Alcalá (2011), and to rate the females higher, supporting what both González Martínez (2008) and Labov (1972) found.



College and Department

Humanities; Spanish and Portuguese



Date Submitted


Document Type





Language Attitude, Peninsular Spanish, Mexican Spanish, Pronunciation, Matched Guise, Second Language