Corpus analysis of engagement discourse strategies in academic presentations

Keywords: academic Spanish oral presentations, genre analysis, engagement, academic literacy, Spanish language teaching

Abstract

Text analysis informed by Genre Theory (Hyon 1996) and methods in Corpus Linguistics provide the opportunity to describe language patterns that exist not only at the individual level but also in discourse communities. In this study, we investigate the discourse strategies used by novice and expert members of the academic United States (US) Spanishspeaking community to engage their audience, construct interpersonal meaning, and position themselves as expert speakers. We analyze two corpora: a specialized corpus of 32 conference presentations delivered by professors and doctoral students of Hispanic Studies, and a learner corpus of 24 in-class presentations to describe discourse patterning of social engagement expressed in text organization during presentation openings. Results indicate variation in engagement strategies between novice and expert presenters, with professors being the ones who make more use of interpersonal and interactive features to engage their audience. Our findings inform genre-based pedagogies by describing the language functions used to construct the different stages in which openings are organized. As oral presentations have been insufficiently studied (Robles Garrote 2016), this study contributes to the growing knowledge of academic oral
Spanish in the United States.

References

Achugar, Mariana. 2003. Academic registers in Spanish in the U.S.: A study of oral texts produced by bilingual speakers in a university graduate program. In Ana Roca and Maria Cecilia Colombi eds. Mi Lengua: Spanish as a Heritage Language in the United States, Research and Practice. Washington: Georgetown University Press, 213–234.

Achugar, Mariana. 2009. Constructing a bilingual professional identity in a graduate Classroom. Journal of Language, Identity and Education 8/3: 65–87.

Alharbi, Ghada and Thomas Hain. 2016. The OpenCourseWare Metadiscourse (OCWMD) Corpus. LREC. http://www.lrecconf.org/proceedings/lrec2016/pdf/1085_Paper.pdf (April 11, 2020.)

American Council of Teachers of Foreign Language (2012). https://www.actfl.org/ (April 11, 2020.)

Alsop, Siân and Hilary Nesi. 2014. The pragmatic annotation of a corpus of academic lectures. In Calzolari Nicoletta, Kalid Choukri, Thierry Declerck, Hrafn Loftsson and Bente Maegaard eds. Proceedings of LREC 2014, Ninth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation, 1560–1563.

Alonso-Ramos, Margarita. 2016. Spanish Learner Corpus Research: Current Trends and Future Perspectives. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Anthony, Lawrence. 2013. AntConc (Version 3.2.4). http://www.antlab.sci.waseda.ac.jp. (April 11, 2020.)

Antilla-Garza, Julie and Jenny Cook-Gumperz. 2015. Debating the world – choosing the word: High school debates as academic discourse preparation for bilingual students. Linguistics and Education 31: 276–285.

Biber, Douglas. 1994. An analytical framework for register studies. In Biber Douglas and Edward Finegan eds. Sociolinguistic Perspectives on Register. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 31–58.

Biber, Douglas. 2006. University Language: A Corpus-Based Study of Spoken and Written Registers. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Biber, Douglas and Susan Conrad. 2009. Register, Genre and Style. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Bolívar, A. 2005. Tradiciones discursivas y construcción del conocimiento en las humanidades. Signo y Seña 14: 67–91.

Burgo, Clara. 2017. Meeting student needs: Integrating Spanish heritage language learners into the second language classroom. Hispania 100/5: 45–50.

Burns, Anne. 2001. Analysing spoken discourse: Implications for TESOL. In Anne Burns and Caroline Coffin eds. Analysing English in a Global Context: A Reader. London: Routledge, 123–148.

Casas-Pedrosa, Antonio, Jesús Fernández-Domínguez and Alejandro Alcaraz-Sintes. 2013. Introduction: The use of corpora for language teaching and learning. Research in Corpus Linguistics 1: 1–5.

Ciapuscio, Guiomar. 2005. La noción de género en la Lingüística Sistémico Funcional y en la Lingüística Textual. Revista Signos 38: 31–48.

Csomay, Eniko. 2015. A corpus-based analysis of linguistic variation in teacher and student presentations in university settings. In Viviana Cortés and Eniko Csomay eds. Corpus-based Research in Applied Linguistics. In Honor of Doug Biber. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1–23.

Dressen-Hammouda, Dacia. 2012. Measuring the construction of discoursal expertise through corpus-based genre analysis. In Alex Boulton, Shirley Carter-Thomas and Elizabeth Rowley-Jolivet eds. Corpus-informed Research and Learning in ESP: Issues and Applications. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 193–216.

Fang, Zhihui, Mary J. Schleppegrell and Beverly E. Cox. 2006. Understanding the language demands of schooling: Nouns in academic registers. Journal of Literacy Research 38/3: 247–73.

Flowerdew, Lynne. 2005. An integration of corpus-based and genre-based approaches to text analysis in EAP/ESP: Countering criticisms against corpus-based methodologies. English for Specific Purposes 24: 321–332.

Flowerdew, John. 2017. Corpus-based approaches to language description for specialized academic writing. Teach 50/1: 90–106.

Granger, Sylviane. 2011. How to use foreign and second language learner corpora. In Alison Mackey and Susan M. Gass eds. Research Methods in Second Language Acquisition: A Practical Guide. Malden: Blackwell, 7–29.

Gries, Stefan. Th. 2009. What is Corpus Linguistics? Language and Linguistics Compass 3: 1–17.

Gries, Stefan Th. and Andrea L. Berez. 2017. Linguistic annotation in/for corpus linguistics. In Nancy Ide and James Pustejovsky eds. Handbook of Linguistic Annotation. Dordrecht: Springer Science, 379–408.

Hood, Susan and Gail Forey. 2005. Introducing a conference paper: Getting interpersonal with your audience. Journal of English for Academic Purposes 4/4: 291–306.

Hyland, Ken. 2005. Stance and engagement: A model of interaction in academic discourse. Discourse Studies 7/2: 173–192.

Hyland, Ken. 2009. Corpus informed discourse analysis: The case of academic engagement. In Maggie Charles and Susan Hunston eds. Academic Writing: At the Interface of Corpus and Discourse. London: Continuum, 110–128.

Hyland, Ken and Feng Jiang. 2017. Is academic writing becoming more informal? English for Specific Purposes 45: 40–51.

Hyon, Sunny. 1996. Genre in three traditions: Implications for ESL. TESOL Quarterly 30/4: 693–722.

Martin, James. 2009. Genre and language learning: A social semiotic perspective. Linguistics and Education 20/1: 10–21.

Martin, James R. and David Rose. 2007. Working with Discourse: Meaning beyond the Clause. London: Continuum.

Martin, James R. and David. Rose 2008. Genre Relations: Mapping Culture. London: Equinox Publishing.

Maynard, Carson and Sheryl Leicher. 2007. Pragmatic annotation of an academic spoken corpus for pedagogical purposes. In Eileen Fitzpatrick ed. Corpus Linguistics beyond the Word: Corpus Research from Phrase to Discourse. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 107–115.

McEnery, Tony and Andrew Hardie. 2011. Corpus Linguistics: Method, Theory and Practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Miles, Matthew B. and Michael Huberman. 1984. Qualitative Data Analysis: A Sourcebook of New Methods. Beverly Hills: Sage.

Morell, Teresa and Susana Pastor Cesteros. 2018. Multimodal communication in academic oral presentations by L2 Spanish students. Journal of Spanish Language Teaching 5/2: 125–138.

Moyano, Estela Inés. 2009. Negotiating genre: Lecturer’s awareness in genre across the curriculum Project at the university level. In Charles Bazerman, Adair Bonini and Débora Figueiredo eds. Genre in a Changing World. Indiana: Parlor Press and WAC Clearinghouse, 442–464.

Navarro, Federico and Alex Simões. 2019. Potencial de estructura genérica en tesis de ingeniería eléctrica: Contrastes entre lenguas y niveles educativos. Revista Signos 52: 306–329.

Parodi, Giovanni. 2008. Lingüística de corpus: Una introducción al ámbito. Revista de Lingüística Teórica y Aplicada 46/1: 93–119.

Parodi, Giovanni. 2010. Academic and Professional Discourse Genres in Spanish. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Poynton, Cate. 1989. Language and Gender: Making the Difference. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Révész, Andrea. 2011. Coding second language data validly and reliably. In Alison Mackey and Susan M. Gass eds. Research Methods in Second Language Acquisition: A Practical Guide. Malden: Blackwell, 201–221.

Robles Garrote, Pilar. 2016. Aportaciones de la lingüística de corpus al estudio de la conferencia como género académico de divulgación científica. Chimera: Romance Corpora and Linguistic Studies 3: 1–21.

Rowley-Jolivet, Elizabeth and Shirley Carter-Thomas. 2005. The rhetoric of conference presentation introductions: Context, argument and interaction. International Journal of Applied Linguistics 15/1: 45–70.

Seloni, Lisya. 2012. Academic literacy socialization of first year doctoral students in the USA: A micro-ethnographic perspective. English for Specific Purposes 31/1: 47–59.

Schleppegrell, Mary. J. 2004. The Language of Schooling: A Functional Linguistics Perspective. Mahwah: Erlbaum.

Soler-Monreal, Carmen, María Carbonell-Olivares and Luz Gil-Salom. 2011. A contrastive study of the rhetorical organisation of English and Spanish PhD thesis introductions. English for Specific Purposes 30/1: 4–17.

Swales, John. M. 1990. The concept of discourse communities. In John M. Swales ed. Genre Analysis: English in Academic and Research Settings. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 21–32.

Swales, John. M. 2004. Research Genres: Explorations and Applications. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Swales, John. M. 2016. Reflections on the concept of discourse community. ASp 69: 7–19.

Thompson, Susan. 1994. Frameworks and contexts: A genre-based approach to analysing lecture introductions. English for Specific Purposes 13/2: 171–186.

Ventola, Eija. 2002. Why and what kind of focus on conference presentations? In Eija Ventola, Celia Shalom and Susan Thompson eds. The Language of Conferencing. Bern: Peter Lang, 15–50.

Viera, Carolina. 2017. Genre and register variation: Academic conference presentations in Spanish in the United States. In Juan Colomina-Almiñana ed. Contemporary Advances in Theoretical and Applied Spanish Linguistic Variation. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 148–161.

Viera, Carolina. 2019. La informalidad como recurso en el español académico de los Estados Unidos. In Gregory L. Thompson and Scott Alvord eds. Contact, Community, and Connections: Current Approaches to Spanish in Multilingual Populations. Wilmington: Vernon Press, 59–82.

Villar, Claudia. 2011. Las presentaciones académicas orales de los estudiantes alemanes de E/LE. Del discurso monológico al dialógico. Revista Nebrija de Lingüística Aplicada 10/5: 130–172.

Wulff, Stephanie, John. M. Swales and Kristen Keller. 2009. ‘We have about seven minutes for questions’: The discussion sessions from a specialized conference. English for Specific Purposes 28/2: 79–92.

Zareva, Alla. 2012. Self-mention and the projection of multiple identity roles in TESOL graduate student presentations: The influence of the written academic genres. English for Specific Purposes 32/2: 72–83.

Published
2020-05-14
How to Cite
Viera, C., & Williams, S. A. (2020). Corpus analysis of engagement discourse strategies in academic presentations . Research in Corpus Linguistics, 8(1), 105-130. https://doi.org/10.32714/ricl.08.01.07