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Thematic progression in learner language

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Chapter Summary

This study examines the use of thematic progression in material from the Norwegian component of the International Corpus of Learner English (NICLE). The Integrated Contrastive Model is employed to investigate whether Norwegian advanced learners of English use the same thematic-progression strategies as native-speaker professional writers of English, or whether they are influenced by Norwegian discourse conventions. The influence of transfer is examined through comparison with Norwegian texts written by professional writers. In addition, a comparison with non-professional writers of English and Norwegian is included in order to identify potential similarities between novice writers, regardless of whether or not they are writing in their L1 or L2. The results indicate that there are differences in the use of thematic-progression strategies between the NICLE writers and professional writers of English, and that some of these differences are most probably due to transfer from Norwegian. In addition, novice writers seem to share certain characteristics in the way they structure their texts which are different from the strategies employed by professional writers.



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