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A Corpus Linguistic Investigation of Vocabulary-based Discourse Units in University Registers

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Chapter Summary

The present study introduces an approach that combines corpus-linguistic and discourseanalytic perspectives to analyze the discourse patterns in a large multi-register corpus. The primary goals of the study were to identify Vocabulary-Based Discourse Units (VBDUs) using computational techniques, and to describe the basic types of VBDUs as distinguished by their primary linguistic characteristics, using Multi-Dimensional analytical techniques. The secondary goals were to compare the distributional patterns of spoken and written academic registers in their reliance on the different VBDU types, and to illustrate the analysis of the internal organization of a text as sequences of VBDUs. The three major registers analyzed in this study – university classroom teaching, university textbooks, and academic research articles – represent a continuum in the extent to which VBDUs are explicitly marked by surface/textual features.



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