About Austlang

Map from Schmidt, Wilhelm 1919Map from Schmidt, Wilhelm 1919. Die Gliederung der australischen Sprachen. Geographische, bibliographische, linguistische Grundzüge der Erforschung der australischen Sprachen. Wien: Mechitharisten-Buchdruckerei. Copyright by Mechitharisten-Kloster. This map is one of the earliest maps which show geographical distributions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages.

Austlang provides information about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages which has been assembled from a number of referenced sources. AUSTLANG links to MURA the AIATSIS catalogue, OZBIB, a curated bibliography about Indigenous Australian languages and other resources (see the LINKS tab in a record).

Austlang contains the following information about each Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander language:

  • Alternative/variant names and spellings
  • A comment about the language variety from referenced sources
  • Geographical location from referenced sources
  • History of the number of speakers (where available)
  • Classifications from various linguistic surveys
  • Links to a variety of resources
  • Documentation scores for known word lists; text collections; grammars; audio-visual resources
  • Programs (where available)
  • Researchers (where available)

Content disclaimer Austlang is presented largely from a research perspective and may not necessarily be consistent with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives. The system assembles information from a number of sources without assessing the validity and truthfulness of that information. AIATSIS makes no representations, warranties or assurances (either expressed or implied) as to the accuracy, currency or completeness of the information presented. AIATSIS will not be held liable for any damage that may arise from use of or reliance upon any information provided by this system, or from your inability to use the system. AIATSIS reserves the right to add, delete and/or modify any information on the site at any time without prior notification.

Location of languages Users of this system are advised that locations of languages shown on the Google maps are approximate and not to be used for land or native title claims. AUSTLANG offers one representation of language locations, which is neither authoritative nor definitive.

History of Austlang

  • 1990s "Australia's Languages" HyperCard stacks developed by Nick Thieberger
  • 2001 Nick Thieberger migrated the information from HyperCard stacks to a Filemaker Pro file to form the basis of the Indigenous Languages Database (ILDB)
  • 2003: Doug Marmion drafted specifications for a web-enabled Indigenous Languages Database based on ILDB data
  • 2004: The University of Melbourne contracted to provide programming work 
  • 2005: Initial version of AUSTLANG released
  • 2007: The Australian National University contracted to provide programming work for new version
  • 2008: AUSTLANG released to the public. 
  • 2016: AIATSIS plans to migrate Austlang to a new platform and combine with the Languages and Peoples Thesaurus
  • 2018: refined and redeveloped Austlang deployed on AIATSIS Drupal platform

Language codes and reference names

Indigenous Australian languages are known by a range of names and spellings, a result of haphazard incorporation into non-Indigenous knowledge systems. In order to maintain the identity of a language, AIATSIS assigns an alpha-numeric code to each language variety, with a community preferred name and spelling, to form a reference name. The letter in the code represents a specific region shown on the map below (note that P is used for creoles and Aboriginal English).

Map displaying language code areas

Some reference names are used as both a language and a dialect name; some as either a language or a dialect name. When a name is used as both a language and a dialect name, this is indicated by ^, for example, the name Kala Lagaw Ya^ (Y1) is used as both a language name and a dialect name – the Kala Lagaw Ya^ (Y1) language has the following dialects: Kalaw Kawaw Ya (Y2), Kulkalgaw Ya (Y4), Kawalgaw Ya (Y5), and Kala Lagaw Ya^ (Y1) itself.

When a reference name is used only as a language name, with dialects listed separately, the language name is given in capitals. For example, YOLNGU MATHA (N230) is used as a language name and the Yolngu Matha language has several dialects, but unlike the case of Kala Lagaw Ya^ (Y1), none of these dialects are called Yolngu Matha.

In reality, there are not many reference names marked with ^ or capital letters because these conventions are employed only when relationships between languages and dialects are clear or a name is clearly used as a language name for a group of dialects. Further, these conventions are not employed when distributions of dialects are not clear. For example, Dench (1991:126) reports that speakers recognise two named dialects of Banyjima (A53): Pantikura (A76) and Milyaranypa (A77), but it is not clear whether they cover the entire Panyjima speaking country or just parts of it. Therefore, Banyjima (A53) is not given in capitals.

Languages and dialects

In Austlang, the distinction between languages and dialects are not always made, and the term 'language variety' is often used to refer to both language and dialect, or in some cases patrilects (see Ritharrngu N104). In general, languages consist of dialects which are varieties (or different versions) of the language. Different dialects are mutually comprehensible and are described in terms of a dialect chain. When two neighbouring dialects (adjacent links in a chain) are compared, the differences are slight. A comparison between dialects from each end of the chain reveals significant differences, which makes mutual comprehension between some speakers more difficult. On the other hand, different languages are not mutually comprehensible and must be acquired or learnt.

Relationships between language varieties are described as a comment. Note that a record in Austlang can be on either a language or a dialect. That is, languages are not the sole entries in Austlang. Dialects are not listed under a language. In effect this means that dialects are afforded equal 'status' as languages. 

Austlang as a 'names' dataset

The starting point of AUSTLANG was the Indigenous Languages Database (ILDB). This data was based on the Language Thesaurus maintained by the AIATSIS library. The AIATSIS library has used the Language Thesaurus for cataloguing purposes from the 1960's. Since then research on Indigenous languages has revealed previously unknown languages; some language names have turned out to be place names; others have been confused with people names; some names are those given by neighbours, but not used by the speakers.

Austlang attempts to incorporate and present recent findings and list all names that have been reported to be a language or dialect name in the past. This includes language and dialect names which were not previously reported and names that were previously reported to be language name, but which turned out not to be so. In order to distinguish different types of names, for example names that are not a language, Austlang has a status field to distinguish different degrees of certainty about names. The distinction between ‘Unconfirmed’ and ‘Potential no data’ is not clear, since both categories include names with little information.

Data sources and references (bibliography)

The Austlang bibliography assembles information from a number of sources, including the following selection of materials. 

  • Australian Bureau of Statistic. 2005. Australian Standard Classification of Languages (2nd edition. 1267.0. Canberra: ABS. ABS data used with permission from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
  • Australian Bureau of Statistics. 1996. Census of Population and Housing, Languages Spoken at home (Australian Indigenous languages). Canberra: ABS. ABS data used with permission from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
  • Australian Bureau of Statistics. 2001. Census of Population and Housing, Languages Spoken at home (Australian Indigenous languages). Canberra: ABS. ABS data used with permission from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
  • Australian Bureau of Statistics. 2006. Census of Population and Housing, Languages Spoken at home (Australian Indigenous languages). Canberra: ABS. ABS data used with permission from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
  • Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. 2005. National Indigenous Languages Survey report 2005. Canberra: Department of Communication, Information Technology, and the Arts. Can be downloaded from: http://www.arts.gov.au/indigenous/Maintenance_of_Indigenous_Languages_and_Records/publications  © Commonwealth of Australia (2005). This work is copyright. Apart from any use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced by any process without prior written permission from the Commonwealth. Requests and inquiries concerning reproduction and rights should be addressed to the Commonwealth Copyright Administration, Attorney General's Department, Robert Garran Offices, National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600 or posted at http://www.ag.gov.au/cca.
  • Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. Language and Peoples Thesaurus. URL: http://www1.aiatsis.gov.au/thesaurus/ 
  • Horton, David. 1996. Aboriginal Australia. Canberra: AIATSIS: A map (1:4,700,000) of language/tribal/nation groups and their list. Online version of the map is available on https://aiatsis.gov.au/explore/articles/aiatsis-map-indigenous-australia
  • Approved Subject Headings by Australian Bibliographic Network on Australian Aboriginal languages. URL: https://www.nla.gov.au/librariesaustralia/our-services/cataloguing-service/australian-extension-lcsh
  • Baker, Brett. New Top End Handbook (FileMaker database) (ASEDA 0626).
  • Clark, Ian. 1999. Aboriginal languages and clans: an historical atlas of Western and Central Victoria, 1800-1900. Melbourne: Monash Publications.
  • Dixon, R. M. W. 2002. Australian languages: their nature and development. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Gordon, Raymond G., Jr. (ed.). 2005. Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Fifteenth edition. Dallas, Tex.: SIL International. URL: http://www.ethnologue.com/
  • Glottolog
  • Harvey, Mark. 2008. Non-Pama-Nyungan Languages: land-language associations at colonisation. (ASEDA 802). URL: http://aseda.aiatsis.gov.au/php/aseda/aseda_record.php?aseda_id=802
  • Harvey, Mark. 2008. Non-Pama-Nyungan Languages: land-language associations at colonisation. (AILEC 0802).
  • McGregor, William. 1988. Handbook of Kimberley languages. Series title: Pacific Linguistics Series C-105. Canberra: RSPAS, ANU.
  • Nash, David and Menning, Kathleen. 1981. Sourcebook for Central Australian Languages. Alice Springs: Institute of Aboriginal Development.
  • Oates, W. J. and Oates, L. F. 1970. A revised linguistic survey of Australia. Australian Aboriginal Studies 33, Linguistic series 12. Canberra: AIAS
  • Oates, Lynettte F. 1975. The 1973 supplement to a revised linguistic survey of Australia. Armidale: Christian Book Centre
  • O'Grady, G N, Voegelin, C F, and Voegelin. F M. 1966. Languages of the world: Indo-Pacific fascicle six. Anthropological Linguistics 8(2).
  • Schmidt, Annette. 1990. The Loss of Australia's Aboriginal language heritage. Canberra: AIATSIS: Overviews Aboriginal language situation; examines attitudes to language; analyses language maintenance and revival programs, bilingual education, effectiveness of funding and National Aboriginal Languages Program; availability of linguistic training, characteristics of language loss and the place of creoles in language programs.
  • Thieberger, Nick. ILDB (Indigenous Language Database, filemaker database).
  • Thieberger, Nick. 1993. Handbook of Western Australian Aboriginal languages south of the Kimberley region. Series title: Pacific Linguistics Series C-124. Canberra: RSPAS, ANU. URL: https://web.archive.org/web/20011217143806/http://coombs.anu.edu.au/WWWVLPages/AborigPages/LANG/WA/contents.htm
  • Tindale, Norman. 1974. Aboriginal tribes of Australia: their terrain, environmental controls, distribution, limits, and proper names. First published by Berkeley: University of California Press and then by Canberra: Australian National University Press. Online version is available at http://archives.samuseum.sa.gov.au/tindaletribes/index.html. This site, the 'Catalogue of Australian Aboriginal Tribes', also provides information about Tindale's collection in the South Australian Museum Archives. The collection comprises expedition journals and supplementary papers, sound and film recordings, drawings, maps, photographs, genealogies, vocabularies and correspondence.
  • Tindale, Norman. 1974. Tribal Boundaries in Aboriginal Australia. Canberra: Division of National Mapping, Department of National Development. Online version: http://archives.samuseum.sa.gov.au/tribalmap This  map is a reproduction of N.B. Tindale's 1974 map of Indigenous group boundaries existing at the time of first European settlement in Australia. It is not intended to represent contemporary relationships to land. 
    (Tindale's Aboriginal tribes of Australia and Tribal Boundaries in Aboriginal Australia are the culmination of years of research, which are presented in his manuscripts. A list of manuscripts relevant to each language can be found on the South Australia Museum web site by searching Tindale's Catalogue of Australian Aboriginal Tribes (http://archives.samuseum.sa.gov.au/tribalmap/). ©Tony Tindale and Beryl George 1974. Courtesy of the South Australian Museum. You can find a language by language link between AUSLTANG and this site under the Resource tab on the language information page.)
  • Triffitt, Geraldine. 2006. OZBIB : a linguistic bibliography of Aboriginal Australia and the Torres Strait Islands : supplement 1999-2006. Canberra: Mulini Press. URL: http://ozbib.aiatsis.gov.au
  • Triffitt, Geraldine and Carrington, Lois. 1999. OZBIB : an Australian linguistic bibliography of Aboriginal Australia and the Torres Strait Islands. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics. URL: http://ozbib.aiatsis.gov.au
  • Walsh, Michael. 1981. Maps of Australia and Tasmania. In Wurm, S A, and Hattori, Shirô, eds, Language atlas of the Pacific area, 1. Canberra: Australian Academy of the Humanities. © Australian Academy of the Humanities. Information used with permission from the Australian Academy of the Humanities.
  • Wurm, Stephen. 1972. Languages of Australia and Tasmania. The Hague: Mouton.

Please note information from A handbook of Aboriginal languages of New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory (Wafer & Lissarrague 2008) has not been incorporated into the database yet. 

Call numbers are provided in a reference where a manuscript, audio or audio visual materials are held at AIATSIS, for example MS 1720, or JOHNSON_S01. If an item held in AILEC – Australian Indigenous Languages Electronic Collection – its item number is cited preceded by AILEC,for example: AILEC 0802. 

Abbreviations

The following is a list of abbreviations used in AUSTLANG. There are other abbreviations used in the headings.

ABS

Australian Bureau of Statistics

 

AIATSIS

Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies

AILEC Australian Indigenous Languages Electronic Catalogue

ALRRC

NSW Aboriginal Languages Research and Resource Centre. 2007. The Aboriginal Languages of NSW (CD-ROM). © 2007 NSW Department of Aboriginal Affairs

 

ASEDA

Aboriginal Studies Electronic Data Archive

 

Atlas

Walsh, Michael. 1981. Maps of Australia and Tasmania. In Wurm, S A, and Hattori, Shirô, eds, Language atlas of the Pacific area, 1. Canberra: Academy of the Humanities.

Ethnologue

Gordon, Raymond G., Jr (ed.) 2005. Ethnologue: Languages of the World (15th edition)

Horton

Horton, David 1996, Aboriginal Australia. Canberra: AIATSIS

Glottolog

A comprehensive reference information for the world's languages, especially the lesser known languages. glottolog.org

ILDB

Thieberger, Nick, ILDB (Indigenous Language Database, Filemaker database)

Kimberley (Handbook)

McGregor, William 1988, Handbook of Kimberley languages. Series title: Pacific Linguistics Series C-105. Canberra: RSPAS, ANU

MURA

AIATSIS Library and Audio-visual archive catalogue

NBA

National Bibliographic Network

NILS

Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. 2005. National Indigenous Languages Survey report 2005. Canberra: Department of Communication, Information Technology, and the Arts

Marmion, Doug, Kazuko Obata and Jakelin Troy. 2014. Community, identity, wellbeing : the report of the Second National Indigenous Languages Survey. Canberra, ACT : Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies.

OZBIB

Linguistic Bibliography of Aboriginal Australia and the Torres Strait Islands

SCAL

Nash, David and Menning, Kathleen 1981, Sourcebook for Central Australian Languages. Alice Springs: Institute of Aboriginal Development

Language Thesaurus

Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. Language and Peoples Thesaurus

Tindale

Tindale, Norman. 1974. Aboriginal tribes of Australia: their terrain, environmental controls, distribution, limits, and proper names. Berkeley: University of California Press © Tony Tindale and Beryl George 1974. Courtesy of the South Australian Museum

Top End Hanbook

Baker, Brett. New Top End Handbook (FileMaker database). (ASEDA 0626).

WA Handbook

Thieberger, Nick. 1993. Handbook of Western Australian Aboriginal languages south of the Kimberley region. Series title: Pacific Linguistics Series C-124. Canberra: RSPAS, ANU

VACL

Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages

Wangka Maya PALC

Wangka Maya Pilbara Aboriginal Languguage Centre

Understanding the language information page

A language information page has the AIATSIS code and AUSTLANG reference name as the heading and provides basic information collected from a number of referenced sources. The information has not been assessed for its validity or truthfulness, and AIATSIS neither endorses nor refutes the information. Users are strongly encouraged to examine the referenced source materials.

The information is arranged under the following headings:

  • Name
  • Comment
  • Location
  • Documentation
  • Links
  • Speaker
  • Program
  • Classification

Comment

A comment about relationships with other language varieties; the status of the language and other information is provided. In citing information, language names are usually spelled in the way they are spelled in the source material. When this is different from the Austlang reference name, the AIATSIS code follows in brackets.

The Status field distinguishes different levels or degrees of certainty about names. There are four status levels:

Confirmed

Names which are accepted to refer to a language/dialect by linguists.

Unconfirmed

Names which are unlikely to be a language/dialect name. This may be because linguists identified them to be a place, person or group name or as an alternative name/variant of another language identified elsewhere in the database, or there is hardly any evidence to prove them to be a language/dialect name.

Potential with data (Potential data)

Names whose identity is uncertain because of limited information available. Language data (word list, phrases, etc.) is available according to the AIATSIS catalogue, MURA.

Potential with no data (Potential no data)

Names whose identity is uncertain because of limited information available. No language data (word list, phrases, etc.) is available according to the AIATSIS catalogue, MURA.

Classification

Classifications of Indigenous Australian languages from Ethnologue (2005); Dixon (2002); Wurm (1994 and 1972); Walsh (1981); Oates (1975), O’Grady, Voegelin & Voegelin (1966) are listed.

Location

When available, written descriptions of the location of a language are provided. The location provided on the accompanying maps are based on these descriptions, as well as cited maps. Note that in identifying the location, Norman Tindale's Aboriginal tribes of Australia and Tribal Boundaries in Aboriginal Australia (map) were used (and quoted/cited) only when no other information was available, or the information found in Tindale's work overlaps with other available information.

Documentation

Documentation scores convey information about four formats: word lists/dictionaries, texts/stories, grammars, and audio-visual.

Documentation scores were calculated on the basis of materials held In the AIATSIS collection (see MURA) including AILEC, and in OZBIB.

The 'unclear status' of a language means that an item is described as on a number of languages in MURA, but it is not clear whether the item contains data on all of these languages. ‘Unclear status' also applies where an item is described as on a certain language but the explanatory notes for the item suggest that the item actually does not contain information about this language.

The scoring is based on the scoring system employed by the National Indigenous Languages Survey conducted by AIATSIS and FATSIL in 2004. Scoring for dictionary/word list, texts/stories, and grammar was conducted by Kazuko Obata from February to June 2006, while scoring for audio-visual items was undertaken by Sally McNicol as part of the Survey in late 2004. The latter was partially updated by Kazuko Obata in 2007. 

The following table shows the scoring system employed by the Survey. The scores do not correspond to the number of items.

Word list/ Dictionary

Large (more than 200 pages)

4

Medium (100 – 200 pages)

3

Small (20 – 100 pages)

2

Less than 20 pages

1

None

0

Texts/stories

Large (more than 200 pages)

4

Medium (100 – 200 pages)

3

Small (20 – 100 pages)

2

Less than 20 pages

1

None

0

Grammar

Large grammar (more than 200 pages)

4

Small grammar (100 – 200 pages)

3

Sketch grammar

2

A few articles

1

None

0

Audio

More than 10 hours of audio

3

Between 1 and 10 hours of audio

2

Less than an hour of audio

1

None

0

Word list/Dictionary:

  • Items subject to scoring included published items, manuscripts and field notes where items clearly included a word list/dictionary of a particular language with some indication of the extent of data (by page numbers or the number of words).
  • Items which list only place names, kinship terms or flora terms are excluded.
  • Items by Daisy Bates (Daisy Bates, 1859-1951, collected data on languages from the north-western Australia. Most of her items are manuscripts) are included in scoring only when the item clearly contains data on a particular language. Otherwise, they are not subject to scoring and are included in the manuscript/field notes.
  • Where a word list/dictionary have more than one part, eg. Indigenous-English, English-Indigenous, alphabetical and/or semantic fields, scores were worked out according to the number of pages for the Indigenous-English part or alphabetical part only.

Texts/stories:

  • Items subject to scoring included published texts, books, and booklets. Readers for literacy programs are included but not alphabet/orthography books or booklets which list some words or expressions only.
  • Tape transcriptions and field notes are included when MURA clearly indicates what kind of data and how much data they contain (often these are transcriptions or field notes which have undergone some processing, e.g. transcriptions with translations, or typed rather than photocopied field notes).
  • Elicited sentences were also subject to scoring.
  • Daisy Bates' items are subject to scoring but note that many of her items contain very limited data, comprising a few sentences or words.
  • Songs are also included, although it is preferable to categorise them separately.  


Grammar:

  • Some of items that were subject to scoring cover only limited topic(s) of grammar, e.g. morphology.
  • If an item also contains a word list and/or text, only the number of pages for grammatical description is considered for scoring in this category.


Audio: Items subject to scoring were materials held at the AIATSIS audio-visual archive. Scoring was done on the basis of documentation (audition sheets) on each material. 

Manuscripts/field notes:

  • If a manuscripts/field note was subject to scoring in one of the other categories (dictionary/word list, texts/stories or grammar), it was not included under manuscripts/field notes.
  • Where a manuscript/field note contains only vocabulary, songs, or sentences, it is indicated so as much as possible.

Documentation scores are a guide only. Users are strongly encouraged to consult MURA, OZBIB, and ASEDA themselves. Some dictionaries contain examples and this increases the number of pages. On the other hand, some texts contain only original texts and their translation while others contain word by word translation or segmented texts, increasing the number of pages. Comparison of scores across different languages may not be helpful since scores can only be compared by the number of pages not by the number of dictionary entries or the number of lines in Indigenous languages. It is ideal to have a scoring system with the number of entries or lines but implementation of such a scoring system requires substantial resources. currently unavailable. It is also difficult to compare the quality of different items.

Catalogue and links

  • MURA is the AIATSIS collection catalogue
  • OZBIB is a curated linguistic bibliography of Aboriginal Australia and the Torres Strait Islands
  • Oates - for the 1973 supplement to a revised linguistic survey of Australia 1975, by Lynnette Oates
  • Tindale - for Aboriginal tribes of Australia 1974, by Norman Tindale
  • Ethnologue - for Ethnologue: Languages of the World (15th edition) 2005, by Gordon, Raymond G., Jr. (ed.)
  • WA Handbook - for Handbook of Western Australian Aboriginal languages south of the Kimberley region 1983, by Nicholas Thieberger
  • Kimberley - for Handbook of WA Aboriginal Languages (South of the Kimberley Region) 1988, by William McGregor
  • SCAL - for Sourcebook for Central Australian Languages 1981, by David Nash and Kathleen Menning.

Speakers

Information on speaker numbers as found in different surveys or census.

Oates 1973

Oates, Lynette. 1975. The 1973 supplement to a revised linguistic survey of Australia

Senate 1984

Senate Standing Committee on Education and the Arts. 1984. A National Language Policy

Schmidt 1990

Schmidt, Annette. 1990. The loss of Australia's Aboriginal language heritage

Census 1996

Australian Bureau of Statistics 1996 Census

Census 2001

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2001 Census

NILS 2004

National Indigenous Languages Survey 2004

2005 estimate

Estimated speaker numbers as reported in National Indigenous Languages Survey Report 2005

Census 2006

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2006 Census

Other source

Any other source, but not from a survey or census. The source normally provides information about one or a few languages only

 

Please note: Regarding the Census data, ABS's Australian Standard Classification of Languages 1997 (ASCL) separately identifies 50 Australian Indigenous languages. ABS released the second edition of ASCL in 2005 and this separately identifies 155 Indigenous languages. In the Census result, the number of speakers of a not-separately-identified-language is included in the number given for a ‘not elsewhere classified' category, such as ‘Cape York Peninsula Languages' or ‘Northern Desert Fringe Area Languages'. For example, Wagiman is not separately identified in ASCL but listed under the ‘Arnhem Land and Daly River Region Languages' category. The speaker number of Wagiman is then included in the total number of speakers of all languages listed under this category. If a language name is not listed in ASCL at all, the number of speakers for that language is included in the number of speakers given for a ‘not further defined' (nfd) category. Consequently, it is impossible to tell from the published Census data how many speakers actually exist for languages which are not separately identified in ASCL.

Under ‘Speakers', two other types of information are provided: NILS language proficiency and usage scale: and NILS endangerment grade:. These come from the National Indigenous Languages Survey report of 2005. 

The NILS language proficiency and usage scale is the sum of the numbers corresponding to the answers provided to the two questions below. Thus, the sum varies from 0 to 8. 

Q1: ‘How well do the following age groups speak and understand the language?' (‘How well speak?')
0—Don't speak or understand
1—Understand some, speak some
2—Understand well, speak some
3—Understand well, speak fluently

Q2: ‘How often do these age groups use the language?' (‘How often speak?')
0—Not at all
1—On special occasions
2—Few times a week
3—Some words a day
4—Often
5—All day, most days

Where no response was received to the questions, this is indicated by ‘-‘.

The NILS endangerment grade varies between 0 and 5 as follows:
5—Strong/safe
4—Unsafe
3—Definitely endangered
2—Severely endangered
1—Critically endangered
0—No longer fully spoken

Please note: Where no response was received to the two questions above, the NILS report automatically gives 0 for the NILS endangerment grade even when the language is still spoken.
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