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presentation: Looking at EAP course effectiveness via longitudinal learner corpora: Register variation, attitude and errors

TitleLooking at EAP course effectiveness via longitudinal learner corpora: Register variation, attitude and errors
Authors
Issue Date2016
Citation
Hong Kong Baptist University, Language Centre English Seminar, Hong Kong, 7 November 2016 How to Cite?
AbstractWhile universities devote great effort to initial EAP instruction, many question the effectiveness of such instruction on student production. The present study seeks to determine whether EAP instruction results in a longitudinal linguistic variation in the direction of the established norms of an academic register, asking whether our learners are able to develop an academic stance on a topic, and whether any 'focus on form' in our instruction results in a reduction of common L2 errors. These data would, by extension, provide a quantifiable linguistic measure of EAP course effectiveness. This invited talk describes the construction and analysis of a longitudinal corpus of written EAP essays and reports totalling 213,408 words, collected from freshman Chinese undergraduate students at a university in Hong Kong. The data was collected over a semester’s EAP training at three data points (pre-EAP training, immediate post-training and final written examination). I discuss three main analyses with respect to this data. Firstly, I describe the results of a multidimensional analysis (Biber, 1988), where the L2 production exhibited considerable variation between data points in the direction of academic discourse across all five dimensions analysed, including a drop in the use of first person pronouns and the mechanical use of discourse connectives, alongside an increased emphasis on nominalisation and more careful, hedged, presentation of stance. Looking at stance in more detail, I describe the results of a metalinguistic analysis of hedging, boosting, self-mention and attitude marking devices to determine how and to what extent EAP instruction results in the development of an academic voice in the students' L2 writing. Finally, I present the results of an error analysis of the longitudinal data across a number of lexicogrammatical and morphosyntactic error categories, noting that despite our best efforts, it may be better to reduce a focus on error correction both in course materials and written feedback. Despite the findings for L2 errors, the overall findings from the corpus suggest a warmly positive effect of EAP instruction on learner production after only a single semester. A number of pedagogical opportunities for the data are also outlined including the benefits of such analysis for written corrective feedback and future analysis of discipline-specific L2 discourse.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/236895

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorCrosthwaite, PR-
dc.date.accessioned2016-12-14T08:57:46Z-
dc.date.available2016-12-14T08:57:46Z-
dc.date.issued2016-
dc.identifier.citationHong Kong Baptist University, Language Centre English Seminar, Hong Kong, 7 November 2016-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/236895-
dc.description.abstractWhile universities devote great effort to initial EAP instruction, many question the effectiveness of such instruction on student production. The present study seeks to determine whether EAP instruction results in a longitudinal linguistic variation in the direction of the established norms of an academic register, asking whether our learners are able to develop an academic stance on a topic, and whether any 'focus on form' in our instruction results in a reduction of common L2 errors. These data would, by extension, provide a quantifiable linguistic measure of EAP course effectiveness. This invited talk describes the construction and analysis of a longitudinal corpus of written EAP essays and reports totalling 213,408 words, collected from freshman Chinese undergraduate students at a university in Hong Kong. The data was collected over a semester’s EAP training at three data points (pre-EAP training, immediate post-training and final written examination). I discuss three main analyses with respect to this data. Firstly, I describe the results of a multidimensional analysis (Biber, 1988), where the L2 production exhibited considerable variation between data points in the direction of academic discourse across all five dimensions analysed, including a drop in the use of first person pronouns and the mechanical use of discourse connectives, alongside an increased emphasis on nominalisation and more careful, hedged, presentation of stance. Looking at stance in more detail, I describe the results of a metalinguistic analysis of hedging, boosting, self-mention and attitude marking devices to determine how and to what extent EAP instruction results in the development of an academic voice in the students' L2 writing. Finally, I present the results of an error analysis of the longitudinal data across a number of lexicogrammatical and morphosyntactic error categories, noting that despite our best efforts, it may be better to reduce a focus on error correction both in course materials and written feedback. Despite the findings for L2 errors, the overall findings from the corpus suggest a warmly positive effect of EAP instruction on learner production after only a single semester. A number of pedagogical opportunities for the data are also outlined including the benefits of such analysis for written corrective feedback and future analysis of discipline-specific L2 discourse.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.relation.ispartofHong Kong Baptist University, Language Centre English Seminar-
dc.titleLooking at EAP course effectiveness via longitudinal learner corpora: Register variation, attitude and errors-
dc.typepresentation-
dc.identifier.emailCrosthwaite, PR: drprc80@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.authorityCrosthwaite, PR=rp01961-
dc.identifier.hkuros270542-

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