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The development of academic literacy in bilingual settings: a corpus-based research on the rise of subordination in CLIL Francisco Lorenzo Jyväskylä, 2012.

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The development of academic literacy in bilingual settings: a corpus-based research on the rise of subordination in CLIL

Francisco Lorenzo

Jyväskylä, 2012

state of the art on bilingual calp development
State of the art on bilingual CALP development
  • It takes some 7 years to reach CALP in L1 and up to 10 if it is through an L2. There are critical points in that development (threshold level)
  • The development of CALP in L2 consolidates L1 academic literacy. (two-tipped iceberg) (learning to read // reading to learn)
  • European Language Policies support languages across the curriculum for L1 and L2 CALP development.
  • Elaborated vs. Restricted code.
deficits in bilingual academic discourse
Deficits in Bilingual academic discourse
  • Text extension is limited: Overgeneralizations in statements.
  • Academic L2 discourse is poorer in details: provides less information, shows lack of resources in some discourse functions like interpreting facts, expressing a viewpoint or for clarifications or expansion in comments.
  • The verbal system is not well defined: complex time frames of actions are simplified: results in studies are presented as generalizations.
  • Academic rhetorical functions are lacking: including academic formulaic language, and lack of knowledge of genre structure.
  • Structural errors: adverbs for adjectives, subject-verb agreement, morphological simplification.
  • Lexicon fares better than sytax.
state of the art on bilingual history discourse
State of the art on bilingual History discourse
  • Three composition stages: recording (giving accounts of past events); explaining (factorial causation); appraising ( personal rendering and evaluation of facts).
  • Cronology construction: complex time framework
  • Lexical density (large amount of nouns and complex noun phrases)
  • Abstraction: processes are packed up like abstract nouns or concepts ( they hated other races – Racial hatred); They must act responsibilities
  • Lexical metaphors (financial necrosis)
  • Grammar metaphors:
  • Embeddednes and recursion
difficulties in the reception and production of historical texts
Difficulties in the reception and production of historical texts
  • Poor understanding of historical notions: cause, agency and multiple factorial causality. (Christie)
  • Genre simplification: students see texts as biographical narratives (the work of men) not as abstract processes (Llinares and Morton).
  • Cognitive strain: both in historical text production and reception. Bottleneck hypotheses.
  • Failure to capture implicit meanings: agentivity in coup d’etats (Oteiza)
  • Inability to provide a personal acount of facts: students may have no voice.
automated tools for academic discourse assessment
Automated tools for academic discourse assessment
  • Bilingual Syntax Inventory (Krashen used it for assessment purposes).
  • Coh-metrix: measures cohesion over time. Used for content-based teaching.(for first language acquisition, for level of text readability).
  • Syntactic Complexity Analyser: a) length of production (clausal/sentential or T-unit), b)sentence complexity ratio (clauses per sentences); c) amount of subordination; d) amount of coordination ; larger syntactic production units (complex nominals, verb phrases, etc).
  • Lexical Complexity Analyser: a) lexical density ; b) lexical sophistication c) lexical
syntactic complexity in historical narratives of clil intermediate and advanced students sci
Syntactic Complexity in historical narratives of CLIL intermediate and advanced students (SCI)

It happened because the Unitet States started a war with Pakistan, which decided to fight back by destroying these buildings. The terrorist were taken to a famous jail called Guantanamo.

syntactic complexity in historical narratives of clil intermediate and advanced students sci1
Syntactic Complexity in historical narratives of CLIL intermediate and advanced students (SCI)

The purpose of the war was finding weapons of mass destruction, that were supposed to be in possesion of Iraq. That war, that lasted until 2009 made the USA spend a lot of money in weapons and infrastructure, apart from the thousands of American soldiers that died and all the civil casualties,(most of them Iraquies).

syntactic complexity in historical narratives of clil intermediate and advanced students sci2
Syntactic Complexity in historical narratives of CLIL intermediate and advanced students (SCI)
lexical complexity in historical narratives of clil intermediate and advanced students lci
Lexical Complexity in historical narratives of CLIL intermediate and advanced students (LCI)
main areas of lexical growth
Main areas of lexical growth
  • - Verb sophistication (x7)
  • Type token ratio (x1.5)
  • Root type token ratio (x1.5)
main areas of syntactic growth
Main areas of syntactic growth
  • Complex nominal (x7)
  • Mean length of clause (x1.5)
  • Clauses per sentence (x 1.5)
research questions
Research questions
  • How do L1 and L2 SCI and LCI correlate?
  • How do L1 and L2 SCI and LCI evolve over time?
  • What structural plateaus can be found (sentential subordination)?
  • Can we detail threshold levels for historical functions; i.e: recording, explaining and judging?
  • Can we find parallelisms in structural range and academic functions?
  • Is there a natural order of acquisition in subordination as in L1?
applications
Applications
  • Language assessment
  • Group formation
  • Text grading