Problem. The article discusses the relevant extension of the sociolinguistic component of communicative competence in the process of reformatting the training of L2 students in connection with significant social transformations. Methodology. To identify the trends that modify a person’s communicative “portrait”, and the redirection of language learning, into the development of a personality prepared for sociolinguistic variety of intercultural communication, the article uses the methods of critical and comparative analysis of present research and consideration of leading Russian and foreign experience in the sphere of innovative educational practices. Results. The study introduces the disquisition on the necessary reasons to assertiveness of the sociolinguistic competence, and describes the retrospective view on the interest in sociolinguistic parameters of communication. Special attention is paid to the professional pattern of the verbal behavior as the representation of sociolinguistic differences between communicants. Recent dissertations on forming sociolinguistic competence have been analysed. Implications. It is concluded that it is necessary to extend the tendency to take the sociolinguistic parametres of communication into consideration while L2 training.