So, yesterday we looked at Language Change and some suggestions for links to look at and articles to read, and today we'll have a quick look at Language Variation. It's worth remembering that this is more than just accent and dialect (although they are a major part of this topic) and that gender, sexuality, age, workplace and communities of practice can also come into this, along with global English.
A good starting point is the BBC Voices website, which has some excellent resources on regional variation. The British Library has various archives and learning resources available online too, so have a listen to the Archival Sound Recordings here and a read of the Sounds Familiar material here.
For gender and variation, these notes on Teachit, written by the late Andrew Moore, are really helpful. Concentrate on the sections from Lakoff to Cameron for this exam. The best way to do well on a gender variation question is to read Deborah Cameron's Myth of Mars and Venus, but if you can't be arsed (that's CBA to you, you babylon yoot) then you can find good summaries and extracts from this link.