From linguistic theory to lexicographic practice
Core vocabulary and core collocations: combining corpus analysis and native speaker judgement to inform selection of collocations in learner dictionaries (Veronica Benigno and Olivier Kraif)
Veronica Benigno and Olivier Kraif Core vocabulary and core collocations: combining corpus analysis and native speaker judgement to inform selection of collocations in learner dictionaries Abstract: This paper presents the concepts of “core vocabulary” and “core colloca- tions” and discusses implications for the treatment of collocations in monolingual learner phraseological dictionaries. In the first section, we give an account of what the above concepts refer to by drawing on previous research. In the second part, we present the findings from a study (Benigno et al. 2015; Benigno et al. forthcoming) using L1 speaker judgements to validate a method to automatically extract core collocations from frWaC (Baroni et al. 2010), a very large web-corpus. The study aims to identify what features can be used to define and filter “core collocations” from a set of potential can- didates – which were retrieved from the corpus by means of frequency, dispersion, and associative measures and then subjected to the evaluation of a group of native speak- ers who were asked to decide about the importance of collocations to communicate in everyday situations. Findings from the study showed that frequency is an appropriate but not sufficient measure to identify such central and nuclear units in language. In fact native speakers seem to attach importance (intended as usefulness in language use) to highly restricted and fixed units regardless of their frequency of occurrence – provid- ing evidence of the fact that what is core is not systematically a matter of frequency. Based on these findings, the third...
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