Sounds of the City – is Scots more than a distinctive accent?

Is Scots really a language? Surely it’s just the way Scottish people pronounce (or mis-pronounce) English?
These are among the most frequently asked questions that the Scots Language Coordinators have encountered since beginning their secondments. How would you answer these questions – and can you identify any influences on your opinion?
Something that might give you some food for thought on this is the recently published Glasgow University research on the changing sounds of Glaswegian speech. Called Sounds of the City, this project has studied sound changes from the early 20th century to the present day. If you are familair with Glaswegian speech patterns it will be interesting to see if you agree with their findings (I’m not convinced, for example, about their arguments for ‘th’ being replaced with ‘f’ as I often hear ‘h’ being used for ‘hink’ and ‘hingmy’). Have a read – and let me know whit ye hink on the Glow Scots Blether at