Guiding Principles: Forensic Linguistics and Codes of Ethics in Other Fields and Professions


  • Gail Stygall University of Washington



code of ethics, standards of professional responsibility, testimony in legal contexts


This paper analyzes Codes of Ethics of other disciplines and professions with a specialfocus on forensic issues. I also analyze a variety of university outside-consultingrequirements and their implied codes of ethics. I begin with a review of codes for traditional disciplines, such as the American Psychological Association, the American Anthropological Association, and the American Historical Association. Next, I examine special forensic codes either added on to a more general code or a separate statement only devoted to forensic issues, as the forms developed by the American College of Surgeons. There are also codes for organizations that are forensic in orientation, such as the Society of Forensic Engineers and Scientists. Linguistics organizations that have attempted codes are few. I close with an assessment of which type of codes might best fit a proposal for the Linguistic Society of America to create a code.

Author Biography

Gail Stygall, University of Washington

Gail Stygall is Professor of English Language in the Department of English at the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington. She writes and teaches on a variety of topics in legal discourse.



How to Cite

Stygall, G. (2010). Guiding Principles: Forensic Linguistics and Codes of Ethics in Other Fields and Professions. International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law, 16(2), 253–266.