Universiti Teknologi Malaysia Institutional Repository

Evaluative languagein thesis abstracts of novice writers in science and engineering

Mehrjooseresht, Maryam (2016) Evaluative languagein thesis abstracts of novice writers in science and engineering. PhD thesis, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Faculty of Education.

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Abstract

Abstracts are considered to be the main means for researchers to handle the enormous flow of information in today’s competitive research environment and they are essential part of research writing. The fierce competition for readers’ attention has driven the academic writers to employ various promotional elements in their abstracts, while positioning their research findings within the disciplinary discourse. The present study concerns with how various linguistic features work together in unique combinations to help realize the rhetorical purposes identified within the abstract genre. It examines the linguistic features of evaluation within the informational structural of abstracts as being conventionalized by two disciplinary fields: Science and Engineering. Specifically, it looks into the nature of abstracts produced by novice research writers in Malaysia, collectively contained in 866 thesis, gathered from library collections of four public research universities, produced between the years of 2000 to 2010 with total word counts of 291,104. Multi-layered text analyses were carried out: at the macro-level, a generic structure of abstracts employed by the writers were identified and exemplified; at the microlevel, the linguistic realizations of evaluation in different rhetorical sections of abstracts were further explored. Different linguistic features performing three different functions of evaluation were identified and categorized into status, value and relevance. Novice writers from both Science and Engineering fields were found to use similar generic structure, reflecting their awareness of the genre. Lexicogrammatical analyses have pointed to some interesting variations in terms of the overall preferences for status over value and relevance in the two fields. The Science writers were more inclined to include status markers expressing certainty while summarizing their research findings in the Product section of abstracts whereas Engineering writers appeared less assertive. Results from this study offer significant insights for teaching and designing materials for English for Academic Purposes courses in general, and inform novice research writers about specific linguistic choices to be made in order to produce a more efficient and persuasive research writing.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:Thesis (Ph.D (Pengajaran Bahasa Inggeris Sebagai Bahasa Kedua)) - Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, 2016; Supervisor : Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ummul Khair Ahmad
Uncontrolled Keywords:research writing, academic writers
Subjects:L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
Divisions:Education
ID Code:78748
Deposited By: Widya Wahid
Deposited On:30 Aug 2018 16:06
Last Modified:30 Aug 2018 16:06

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