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First Nations Languages of British Columbia: Getting Started


This research guide has been designed to help students, faculty and researchers in First Nation Languages access and utilize relevant resources available through the UBC Library. Some historical language names are innacurate, but useful for locating resources. The spelling of language names used in this guide are not intended to describe or characterize the native speakers in any regard and are used here solely to help researchers locate resources for the study of these languages. 

Major language groups in British Columbia include:

  • Athapaskan (Athabaskan) Languages: Dalkelh, Dena-thah , Dunne-za, Kaska Dena, Sekani, Tagish, Tahltan, Tsilhqot'in, Tutchone, Nat'ooten, Wet'suwet'en
  • Salishan Language Family: Comox, Halkomelem, Nlaka'pamux, Nuxalk, Okanagan, Secwepemc, Se'shalt, Squamish, Stl'atl'imx, Straits Salish
  • Tsimshianic Languages: Gitxsan, Nisga'a, Tsimshian,
  • Wakashan Languages: Haisla, Heiltsuk/Owik'ala, Kwakwaka'wakw, Nuu-chah-nulth
  • Tlingit
  • Algonquian (Cree)
  • Language Isolates: Haida, Kootenai
  • Chinook Jargon