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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Linguistics and Technical Communication
 Degree Level: Master's
Alternative Complementation in Partially Schematic Constructions:  a Quantitative Corpus-based Examination of COME to V2 and GET to V2

Alternative Complementation in Partially Schematic Constructions: a Quantitative Corpus-based Examination of COME to V2 and GET to V2

Date: May 2012
Creator: Lester, Nicholas A.
Description: This paper examines two English polyverbal constructions, COME to V2 and GET to V2, as exemplified in Examples 1 and 2, respectively. (1) the senator came to know thousands of his constituents (2) Little Johnny got to eat ice cream after every little league game. Previous studies considered these types of constructions (though come and get as used here have not been sufficiently studied) as belonging to a special class of complement constructions, in which the infinitive is regarded as instantiating a separate, subordinate predication from that of the “matrix” or leftward finite verb. These constructions, however, exhibit systematic deviation from the various criteria proposed in previous research. This study uses the American National Corpus to investigate the statistical propensities of the target phenomena via lexico-syntactic (collostructional analysis) and morpho-syntactic (binary logistic regression) features, as captured through the lens of construction grammar.
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Burushaski Case Marking, Agreement and Implications: an Analysis of the Hunza Dialect

Burushaski Case Marking, Agreement and Implications: an Analysis of the Hunza Dialect

Date: December 2012
Creator: Smith, Alexander
Description: This thesis was written to explore the structural case patterns of the Burushaski sentence and to examine the different participant coding systems which appear between noun marking and verb agreement. Verb suffixes follow nominative alignment patterns of agreement, while the verb prefix agrees with the affected argument as determined by semantic relations, as opposed to syntactic ones. The agent noun phrase is directly marked when highly active or volitional, suggesting a system of agent marking on the noun phrase and nominative alignment on the verb suffix. Nominative alignment also allows for a less marked presence of passive voice. Burushaski's agent marking is not entirely consistent; however, its nominative alignment is consistent. The conclusion is that Burushaski is not an ergative language at all.
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A Corpus-Based Approach to Gerundial and Infinitival Complementation in Spanish ESL Writing

A Corpus-Based Approach to Gerundial and Infinitival Complementation in Spanish ESL Writing

Date: May 2011
Creator: Martinez-Garcia, Maria Teresa
Description: This paper examines the use of infinitival and gerundial constructions by intermediate Spanish learners. The use of those two patterns creates problems for second language learners at intermediate and advanced levels. However, there are only few studies on their second language acquisition, and fewer focus on Spanish learners. This study tries to resolve this and to this end, I retrieved all hits of the two constructions from the Spanish component of the International Learner Corpus of English (SP-ICLE). I run a distinctive collexeme analysis (DCA) to identify the verbs that are associated with either pattern. The results are discussed at three different levels: (i) the identification of verbs that Spanish learners associate with each construction; (ii) a systematic comparison with previous studies on native speakers to show possible similarities/discrepancies; and (iii) a comparison of the results with findings on German learners to discuss possible effects of language similarity and transfer.
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Directions Toward a “Happy Place”: Metaphor in Conversational Discourse

Directions Toward a “Happy Place”: Metaphor in Conversational Discourse

Date: December 2011
Creator: Edwards, Jonathan Ryan
Description: This paper aims to show how people use and understand metaphorical language in conversational discourse. Specifically, I examine how metaphorical language has the potential to be either effective or ineffective in its usage, and how they are bound to the contextual environment of the conversation. This particular setting is a conversation between a researcher and a participant involved in a therapeutic program. Metaphorical language is shown to be helpful for understanding difficult subjects; however, I found most metaphorical occurrences ineffective in meaning-making. Often these ineffective metaphors are elaborated or repeated throughout the discourse event, creating problems with cohesion and understanding. Metaphor use in conversation is an effective rhetorical tool for creating meaning, but it is also a problematic device when it comes to aligning participants' conversational goal.
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Do College Students with ADHD have Expressive Writing Difficulties as Do Children with ADHD?

Do College Students with ADHD have Expressive Writing Difficulties as Do Children with ADHD?

Date: August 2010
Creator: Mantecon, Hripsime Der-Galustian
Description: This study analyzed the expressive writing of college students. Twenty-two ADHD students and 22 controls were asked to write a story based on a picture story and a personal challenge. The texts were compared based on several qualitative and quantitative parameters. The results show that students in both groups presented similar text quality. Out of six qualitative parameters only one was statistically different between the two groups: ADHD students performed worse in adequacy, but only in the picture task. Students writings were also investigated using corpus based analysis. This analysis showed that ADHD students used less unusually frequent words in the picture story but more in the challenge task. Taken together the findings indicate no significant difference in expressive writing between ADHD and non ADHD college students. An explanation to this result is that college students with ADHD may have passed the filter of prior education.
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Does the Provision of an Intensive and Highly Focused Indirect Corrective Feedback Lead to Accuracy?

Does the Provision of an Intensive and Highly Focused Indirect Corrective Feedback Lead to Accuracy?

Date: May 2010
Creator: Jhowry, Kheerani
Description: This thesis imparts the outcomes of a seven-week long quasi-experimental study that explored whether or not L2 learners who received intensive and highly focused indirect feedback on one type of treatable error - either the third person singular -s, plural endings -s, or definite article the - eventually become more accurate in the post-test as compared to a control group that did not. The paired-samples t-test comparing the pre-test and post-test scores of both groups demonstrates that the experimental group did no better than the control group after they received indirect corrective feedback. The independent samples t-test measuring the experimental and control group's accuracy shows no significant difference between the two groups. Effect sizes calculated, however, do indicate that, had the sample sizes been bigger, both groups would have eventually become more accurate in the errors targeted, although this would not have been because of the indirect feedback.
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Drawing Boundaries and Revealing Language Attitudes: Mapping Perceptions of Dialects in Korea

Drawing Boundaries and Revealing Language Attitudes: Mapping Perceptions of Dialects in Korea

Date: May 2013
Creator: Jeon, Lisa
Description: Perceptual dialectology studies have shown that people have strong opinions about the number and placement of dialect regions. There has been relatively little research conducted in this area on Korean, however, with early studies using only short language attitude surveys. To address this gap in research, in the present study, I use the 'draw-­?a-­?map' task to examine perceptions of language variation in Korea. I ask respondents to draw a line around places in Korea where people speak differently and provide names, examples, and comments about the language spoken in those areas. With the resulting data, I use ArcGIS 10.0 software to quantitatively identify, aggregate, and map the most salient dialect areas and categories for subjects' perceptions. I also perform a content analysis of the qualitative data provided by respondents using 'keywords.' During this process, I categorize comments and labels given by respondents to find emerging themes. Finally, I stratify perceptions of respondents by demographic factors, e.g., age, sex, and urbanicity, that have often been found to be important in language variation and change. An analysis of these data suggests that Koreans' perceptions of dialect regions are not necessarily limited by administrative boundaries. In fact, the data reveal not only perceptions ...
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Effectiveness of on-line corpus research in L2 writing: Investigation of proficiency in English writing through independent error correction.

Effectiveness of on-line corpus research in L2 writing: Investigation of proficiency in English writing through independent error correction.

Date: December 2009
Creator: Kim, Yu-Jeung
Description: Second language (L2) researchers and teachers have increasingly come to believe that using a computer-based corpus can be extremely helpful in the language classroom. The purpose of this study is to examine whether corpora can be used outside of the classroom in order for students to improve their essays independently. No previous study has tried to examine students' essays in relation to corpus use so that this study is exploratory. Seven international students wrote five essays on specific topics and then corrected their errors through corpus research. Two experiments were conducted with different students and followed three steps: receiving information about how to use the BYU COCA, writing and correcting, and interviews with students. I examined quantitatively the number and types of errors that students were able to correct in two experiments and reported qualitatively on students' interview responses.
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Exposing Deep-rooted Anger: A Metaphor Pattern Analysis of Mixed Anger Metaphors

Exposing Deep-rooted Anger: A Metaphor Pattern Analysis of Mixed Anger Metaphors

Date: August 2011
Creator: Barron, Andrew T.
Description: This project seeks to serve two purposes: first, to investigate various semantic and grammatical aspects of mixed conceptual metaphors in reference to anger; and secondly, to explore the potential of a corpus-based, TARGET DOMAIN-oriented method termed metaphor pattern analysis to the study of mixed metaphor. This research shows that mixed metaphors do not pattern in a manner consistent with statements made within conceptual metaphor theory. These metaphors prove highly dynamic in their combinability and resist resonance between SOURCE DOMAINS used. Also shown is the viability of metaphor pattern analysis as a methodology to approach mixed metaphor research.
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Formulaic sequences in English conversation: Improving spoken fluency in non-native speakers.

Formulaic sequences in English conversation: Improving spoken fluency in non-native speakers.

Date: August 2009
Creator: McGuire, Michael
Description: Native speakers often ignore the limitless potential of language and stick to institutionalized formulaic sequences. These sequences are stored and processed as wholes, rather than as the individual words and grammatical rules which make them up. Due to research on formulaic sequence in spoken language, English as a Second Language / Foreign Language pedagogy has begun to follow suit. There has been a call for a shift from the traditional focus on isolated grammar and vocabulary to formulaic sequences and context. I tested this hypothesis with 19 L2 English learners who received 5 weeks of task-based instruction and found substantial progress in oral fluency only for the experimental group. Differences between pretest and posttest oral fluency were examined by looking at the learners' speech rate and their mean length of run. Subjective evaluation of fluency by 16 native English judges confirmed the calculated measures.
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