Development of the vertebrate cerebellum is unusual compared to most other regions of the brain since it involves two germinal regions. Most cell types arise from the luminal, ventricular zone as in other brain regions, but granule cells arise from the second germinal layer, the external granular layer (EGL). Our analysis of the temporal and positional expression of three members of the Sox gene family of transcription factors in the cerebellum shows that granule cell development is unusual compared to most other neurons of the central nervous system (CNS). We show that granule cell precursors lose expression of cSox2 and cSox3 as they migrate to form the EGL. The EGL is the first example of a germinal layer in the CNS which does not exhibit expression of these genes. Throughout most of the CNS cSox11 expression is very low in the ventricular zone but increases dramatically as cells cease proliferation and migrate to form the subventricular zone. We also find that cSox11 expression increases when cells of the cerebellum migrate to form the EGL, but levels of expression as high as that in the subventricular zone are only seen when cells cease proliferation and migrate inwards to form the deep EGL. These observations demonstrate that cells of the proliferative superficial EGL differ qualitatively from cells of the ventricular zone in their expression of Sox genes whereas the post-proliferative cells of the deep EGL appear analogous, in their expression of Sox genes, to cells of the subventricular zone.