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The application of corpus analysis and concordance feedback to collegiate EFL writing

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Title: The application of corpus analysis and concordance feedback to collegiate EFL writing


1
The application of corpus analysis and
concordance feedback to collegiate EFL writing
  • Presenter Wen-Shuenn Wu (Michael Wu)
  • Chung Hua University, Hsinchu, Taiwan
  • May 22, 2009

2
Research is too important to be left to the
researchers. (Tim Johns, 1991)
3
Introduction
  • What is corpus?
  • A collection of naturally occurring examples of
    language, consisting of anything from a few
    sentences to a set of written texts or tape
    recordings, which have been collected for
    linguistic study. (Hunston, 2002, p.2)

4
Introduction
  • What is concordance?
  • A listing of all the occurrences in the corpus of
    the query item, together with some surrounding
    context in the form of words to the left and
    right. (Hoffmann, Evert, Smith, Lee, Pryta, 2008,
    p.264)

5
Classification of corpora
  • Closed corpora
  • Paid corpora (self-owned servers)
  • Free online corpora

6
  • Closed Corpora

7
CIC (Cambridge International
Corpus)
8
  • Paid Corpora

9
BNC (British National Corpus)
10
ANC (American National Corpus)
11
ICAME (International Computer Archive of Modern
and Medieval English)
12
LDC (Linguistic Data Consortium)
13
  • Free online Corpora

14
BNCWeb
15
The Collins Wordbanks Online English Corpus
16
JustTheWord Sharp Laboratory of Europe
http//193.133.140.102/JustTheWord
17
COCA (The Corpus of Contemporary American English)
18
MICASE (Michigan Corpus of Academic Spoken
English)
19
Compleat Lexical Tutor
20
Data-driven learning (DDL)
  • Students act as language detectives,
    discovering facts about the language from
    authentic examples. (Hunston, 2002)
  • DDL serves as consciousness-raising
  • DDL does not teach a language feature, but
    presents learners with evidence and asks them to
    make hypotheses and draw conclusions.

21
Corpora and language teaching
  • To improve students skills of using real
    language in context to come up with an answer to
    certain grammar and usage problems.
  • To investigate the lexico-grammatical
    associations and pattern differences between
    nearly synonymous words.

22
Advantages of using corpora in a language class
  • Solve some grammatical and usage problems.
  • Additional corpus material may be useful to help
    the learner to see a recurrent pattern rather
    than relying on a single occurrence from a text.

23
Disadvantages of using corpora in a language class
  • time-consuming
  • wrong conclusion or incorrect interpretation.
  • Thats why we suggest you talk to us first.
  • In that case I suggest we stick to it, because I
    have the strong feeling that

24
Disadvantages of using corpora in a language
class (cont.)
  • Not all the concordance-derived data are
    grammatically correct.
  • A teacher has to make a couple of digressions
    from the main topics of a lesson, which
    definitely will interrupt the flow of the lecture
    or discussion.

25
Dictionary definition of advise, suggest, and
recommend (LDCE)
  • advise  to tell someone what you think they
    should do, especially when you know more than
    they do about something
  • suggest  to tell someone your ideas about what
    they should do, where they should go etc
  • recommend  to advise someone to do something,
    especially when you have special knowledge of a
    particular subject or situation

26
Whether these sentences are correct?
  • I suggested a new procedure to the committee.
  • A broker will advise you how to invest your
    money.
  • I would always recommend buying a good quality
    bicycle rather than a cheap one.

27
How about these sentences?
  • He suggested us to go for a drink. (LDCE)
  • He suggested that we go for a drink.
  • He advised to leave as quickly as possible.
    (Collins COBUILD English Usage, p.26)
  • Can you suggest something for us to do this
    weekend?
  • If you go to London, we recommend you visiting
    Tate Modern. (LDCE)
  • They advised him that the tour would proceed.

28
Pilot Study
  • Find out the whether advise, suggest, and
    recommend can be used in the following patterns?
  • V N (not) to-V
  • V wh-clause/phrase
  • V that-clause
  • V -ing
  • V for/to someone to-V

29
pedagogical and research issues EFL perspective
(1)
  • native speaker intuition vs. non-native speaker
    competence

30
pedagogical and research issues EFL perspective
(2)
  • the absence of some target patterns and rare
    instances of target patterns
  • suggest N to V (8 target patterns out of
    8778 examples from BNCWeb)
  • I would suggest you to ask that question in fact
    youll ask Gordon afterwards.
  • suggest medicines to help reduce your symptoms.
  • suggest ways to help my weight reduction
  • suggest strategies to increase the safety of

31
pedagogical and research issues EFL perspctive
(4)
  • recommend N V-ing (Longman Grammar of Spoken
    and Written English, p.742) (2 target patterns
    out of 1784 examples from BNCWeb although she
    would recommend you using more tact than Judith
    did.)

32
pedagogical and research issues EFL perspective
(5)
  • suggest N V-ing (Longman Grammar of Spoken
    and Written English, p.742) (4 target patterns
    out of 8778 examples from BNCWeb Perhaps I could
    suggest her getting someone in to look after him
    and she could come..)

33
pedagogical and research issues EFL perspective
(6)
  • real language Where the example sentences from
    corpora are real language in a meaningful
    context?
  • In the classroom setting, EFL students are
    unlikely to be motivated by corpus-based data if
    the instances of language use that they are
    studying are taken from contexts which are
    detached from their interests and concerns
    (Tribble, 1997).

34
Conclusion
  • It is certainly true that I do not believe (and
    do not think the research demonstrates) that
    there is just one preferred approach to teaching
    grammar. The acquisition of the grammatical
    system of an L2 is a complex process and almost
    certainly can be assisted best by a variety of
    approaches. (Ellis, 2006, p.103)

35
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