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Academic Vocabulary in Context

Hirsh, David

Academic Vocabulary in Context

Series: Linguistic Insights - Volume 118

Year of Publication: 2010

Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2010. 217 pp., num. tables and fig.
ISBN 978-3-0343-0426-9 pb.  (Softcover)

Weight: 0.330 kg, 0.728 lbs

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Book synopsis

Academic texts present subject-specific ideas within a subject-independent framework. This book accounts for the presence of academic words in academic writing by exploring recurring patterns of function in texts representing different subject areas. The book presents a framework which describes academic word use at the ideational, textual and interpersonal levels. Functional categories are presented and illustrated which explain the role of academic words alongside general purpose and technical terms. The author examines biomedical research articles, and journal articles from arts, commerce and law. A comparable analysis focuses on university textbook chapters. Case studies investigate patterns of functionality within the main sections of research articles, compare word use in academic and non-academic texts reporting on the same research, and explore the carrier word function of academic vocabulary. The study concludes by looking at historical and contemporary processes which have shaped the presence of academic vocabulary in the English lexicon.


Contents: Academic vocabulary – Theoretical contributions to a functional framework – A functional framework for classifying academic word use – Sections of a biomedical research article – Biomedical research articles – Research articles across subject areas – Textbook chapters across subject areas – Comparison of journal and newspaper texts – Carrier words.

About the author(s)/editor(s)

The Author: David Hirsh is a lecturer in TESOL at the University of Sydney. His main research areas are vocabulary development, second language assessment, and academic adjustment. His research has appeared in Reading in a Foreign Language and Revue Française de Linguistique Appliquée, and in the volumes Teaching Academic Writing and the Continuum Companion to Research Methods in Applied Linguistics. He is associate editor of the University of Sydney Papers in TESOL.


«En definitiva, la obra de Hirsh tiene una gran utilidad potencial para todos los profesores de inglés con fines académicos puesto que permite conocer de forma fiable qué vocabulario académico tiene más relevancia de acuerdo con las diferentes disciplinas y géneros analizados (...).» (Izaskun Elorza, Revista de Lingüística y Lenguas Aplicadas)


Linguistic Insights. Studies in Language and Communication. Vol. 118
Edited by Maurizio Gotti