WRITING AN ACADEMIC PAPER. GENERIC, STYLISTIC AND RHETORICAL ISSUES. AN ACADEMIC PAPER IS. A CODIFIED GENRE WITH A WELL- DEFINED STRUCURE WRITTEN IN A FORMAL STYLE USED TO PRESENT A SIGNIFICATIVE PIECE OF RESEARCH OR TO TAKE STOCK OF A PARTICULAR RESEARCH FIELD. STRUCTURE (1). TITLE PAGE
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WRITING AN ACADEMIC PAPER
GENERIC, STYLISTIC AND RHETORICAL ISSUES
SHOULD INCLUDE NAME OF THE FACULTY
YOUR NAME (AND MATRICULATION NUMBER)
NAME OF LECTURER WHO ASSIGNED THE TASK
IN THE ANGLOSAXON TRADITION COMES AT THE BEGINNING OF THE PAPER
MUST BE CLEARLY STRUCTURED AND PROVIDE PAGE NUMBERS FOR THE MAIN SECTIONS AND SUBSECTIONS
Part 1 From Corpus linguistics to computer learner corpora 11
1.1 A “Pilgrim’s Progress” from literature to corpus linguistics: a personal recollection ………………………………………….. 13
1.2 Computer corpus linguistics at the beginning of the 21st century ………………………………………………………….. 20
1.2.1 The three phases of computer corpus linguistics …… 20
1.2.2 Some key issues in computer corpus linguistics ……. 23
1.2.3 The main research trends in computer corpus linguistics ………………………………………………… 25
1.2.4 The education of future corpus linguists ……………… 29
SHOULD GIVE SOME BACKGROUND INFORMATION
STATE THE MAIN PURPOSE OF THE PAPER
GIVE SOME INFORMATION ABOUT THE METHODOLOGY USED
STATE THE MOST IMPORTANT RESULTS AND CONCLUSION
IT USUALLY CONSISTS OF THREE “MOVES”
1) Establishing a research territory (by showing that the general research area is important, interesting, problematic or relevant in some way)
2) Establishing a niche (by indicating a gap in the previous research, raising a question about it or extending previous knowledge in some way)
3) Occupying the niche (by outlining the purposes of your research and by indicating the structure of the paper)
GIVES DETAILS OF PROCEDURES FOLLOWED TO GATHER AND ANALYZE THE DATA (e.g. comparison of an ad hoc specialised corpus to the BNC to find out key words in a specific domain)
always include information about the source of your material and about the procedures followed
ARE USUALLY SHOWN IN THE FORM OF TABLES, GRAPHS OR DIAGRAMS
EACH TABLE(OR FIGURE) IS NUMBERED AND ACCOMPANIED BY A CAPTION
don’t clog your paper with too many tables. Use summary tables when possible
ITS MAIN PURPOSE IS TO SHOW THAT THE RESULTS LEAD CLEARLY TO THE CONCLUSION BEING DRAWN
THIS MAY INCLUDE ANY LIMITATIONS THAT MIGHT CAUSE PROBLEMS WITH THE CLAIMS BEING MADE (e.g. limited size of a corpus may affect the significance of a result)
RECALLS THE ISSUES RAISED IN THE INTRODUCTION AND DRAWS TOGETHER THE POINTS MADE IN THE RESULTS AND DISCUSSION SECTIONS
SHOULD LEAVE A CLEAR IMPRESSION THAT THE PURPOSE OF THE PAPER HAS BEEN ACHIEVED
IN SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH THE PREVAILING STYLE IS APA (American Psychological Association)
THE SECTION IS ALWAYS AT THE END OF THE PAPER, AFTER THE APPENDIX (OR APPENDICES)
DETAILS ARE ORGANIZED ACCORDING TO THE FOLLOWING ORDER:
Surname, Name (usually only the first letter), publication date (in brackets) title of book (in italics), place of publication : publisher
ACADEMIC WRITING IN ENGLISH IS
ACADEMIC WRITING IN ENGLISH IS:
4) OBJECTIVE (the main emphasis is on the information provided rather than on the writer or reader. More nouns and adjectives; less verbs and adverbs)
5) EXPLICIT (makes it clear to the reader how the various parts of the texts are related)
ACADEMIC WRITING IN ENGLISH IS:
6) “HEDGED” (generallyavoidsmakingbaldclaims. Itisnecessarytomakedecisionsabout the stance (it. posizione) on a particularsubject or the strengthof the claimbeingmade)
a) It may be said that the commitment to some of the social and economic concepts was less strong than it is now.
a1)The commitment to some of the social and economic concepts was less strong than it is now.
b) Weismann suggested that animals become old because, if they did not, there could be no successive replacement of individuals and hence no evolution.
b1) Weismann proved that animals become old because, if they did not, there could be no successive replacement of individuals and hence no evolution.
It might be suggested that
It may be possible to obtain
It is important to note
It is useful to study
ACADEMIC WRITING IN ENGLISH IS:
LAYOUT TWO (DOUBLE SPACED)
A PARAGRAPH IS A BASIC UNIT OF ORGANIZATION IN WRITING IN WHICH A GROUP OF RELATED SENTENCES DEVELOPS ONE MAIN IDEA
MUST BE AT WORK BOTH WITHIN PARAGRAPHS AND BETWEEN SECTIONS
“Itisveryimportanttoreassureyourreaderthatyou are in controlofyourargument. Itisyourdiscussion, so don’t leave people towanderaround in itlikelostthings. Rather, leadthemthrougheachsectionpurposefully, lettingthemknowexactlywhatis happening asyou do it.” (Richard MarggrafTurley, 2000: 31)
A) Corpus linguistics starts from the same premises as text-linguistics in that text is assumed to be the main vehicle for the creation of meaning. In spite of the initial starting point which they share, one has to accept that the two approaches are qualitatively different from several point of view. We can say that a text exists in a unique communicative context as a single, unified language event mediated between the two participants. The corpus, brings together many different texts and cannot be identified with a unique and coherent communicative event.
B) Corpus linguistics starts from the same premises as text-linguistics in that text is assumed to be the main vehicle for the creation of meaning. However, in spite of the initial starting point which they share, one has to accept that the two approaches are qualitatively different from several point of view.To begin with, we can say that a text exists in a unique communicative context as a single, unified language event mediated between the two participants.On the other hand, the corpus, brings together many different texts and therefore cannot be identified with a unique and coherent communicative event.
According to Peters (1983) evidence from first language acquisition indicates that lexical phrases are learnt first as unanalysed lexical chunks.
Evidence from first language acquisition indicating that lexical phrases are learnt first as unanalysed lexical chunks was given by Peters (1983)
Evidence from first language acquisition (Peters, 1983) indicates that lexical phrases are learnt first as unanalysed lexical chunks.
Lexical phrases are learnt first as unanalysed lexical chunks (Peters, 1983)
N.B. IF YOU WANT TO REFER TO A PARTICULAR PART OF THE SOURCE QUOTE THE PAGE e.g. (Peters, 1983: 56)
N.B. KEEP THE QUOTATION AS BRIEF AS POSSIBLE AND QUOTE ONLY WHEN IT IS NECESSARY
Widdowson (1979: 5) states that “ there is a good deal of argument in favour of extending the concept of competence to cover the ability to use language to communicative effect.”
According to one researcher, “there is a good deal of argument in favour of extending the concept of competence to cover the ability to use language to communicative effect.” (Widdowson, 1979: 5)
N.B. USE […] TO INDICATE THAT SOMETHING HAS BEEN OMITTED OR ADDED TO THE QUOTATION
According to Jones (as cited in Smith, 1982: 276), the …
Smith, F. (1978) Reading. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Fromkin, V. & Rodman, R. (1983) An introduction to language. London: Holt-Saunders.
Martelli, A. & Pulcini, V. (Eds) (2008) Investigating English with Corpora. Studies in Honour of Maria Teresa Prat. Monza: Polimetrica.
Baker, M. (1993) “Corpus linguistics and translation studies – implications and applications”, in M. Baker, G. Francis and E. Tognini-Bonelli (Eds) Text and Technology: in Honour of John Sinclair, pp. 233-252, Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins,
Prat, M.T. “Lexico-grammatical errors in Italian EFL university students’ written productions: a corpus-based project”, English Studies 2006, pp. 171-181
Johns, A.M. (forthcoming) “Written argumentation for real audiences”. TESOL Quarterly.
USING ENGLISH FOR ACADEMIC PURPOSES
(A guide for students in Higher Education)
By Andy Gillett
School of Combined Studies, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, UK