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Collocations and Recurrent Phrases in the Academic Word List Pat Byrd TESOL March 23, 2007 1. Overview of the Academic Word List (AWL) 2. Current project and its implications for writing teachers and materials used in teaching writing 3. Examples of Data from the project: a. required (from sublist 1) b. persistent (from sublist 5)

2 require: 3635 uses of the family in the AWL corpus required (1368) requires (636) requirements (560) require (552) requirement (351) requiring (168) Category 1. Major Collocations and Recurrent Phrases Data and Examples required to (2058.23) required for (601.45) required the (457.45) required by (326.06) required a (221.95) Analysis and Comments The highest collocates using loglikelihood in Wordsmith Tools 4.0. The number is parenthesis is the log likelihood. See chapter XXXX for a discussion of statistical measures of collocational relationships. These are not necessarily set phrases but are collocational relationships and thus other words might be inserted as in employees are also required. Additional collocational pairs with high log-likelihood scores. The six most frequent three-word clusters. These set phrases demonstrate that the most characteristic use of required is as the past participle in a passive verb phrase. Notice also the characteristic use of the infinitive complement (Note: first number in parenthesis is the raw count and the 2nd is normed per million words.) Required is also frequent in participle clauses. Required sometimes appears in an active voice verb phrase but this use is not as frequent as the use in passive voice verb phrase or a participle clause.

is required (1239.90) are required (766.97) the required (528.94) be required (304.05) was required (245.43) required information

not required (168.32) is required to (103/29) are required to (100/29) be required to (60/17) required to be (51/15) required by the (42/12) is required for (36/10)

They are unlikely to satisfy the test required by the main argument would have required all educational providers to the tools of telecommunications have required the development of skills and conventions

3 2. Other Patterns

they are required to seek approval although they are not required to label them differently This in itself has required more covert intellectual processes In one school selected, it is required that each administrator, except for the head, teach at least one class the consumer would be required to notify the seller of the lack of conformity within one month some degree of a priori judgement will always be required, no matter which procedure is used

While required has three possible complement patterns, the most characteristic is with an infinitive as shown with the high log likelihood score given above for the collocational relationship between required and to. The use of an NP complement as direct object occurs in the active voice pattern. While that clauses are found in the data, they are extremely rare.

Approximately 7% (99/1368) of the uses of required also involved a modal auxiliary verb. The most frequent and strongest relationship is with would.

Collocational Relationships: would required (137.6) will required (59.7) may required (56.32) Use as an attributive adjective is we aren't bound by the also rare. required state curriculum Of the 729 uses of required in Institutional agents: by sentences with passive verb the workplace, by the phrases, only 96 included a bybetter colleges, by phrase. None of these by-phrases authority, by the Act, by involve a human agent. However, shareholders by does collocate with required, a relationship that indicates the Methodological and requirements of approaches importance of passive voice uses with this verb. to logical argumentation: by correlation-based methods, by the main argument, by the theorem, by the first property, by the second property

Generic human groups: by an elderly person, by the trainee, by those who do not accept required by law required by statute

Some phrases are not often attested in the concordance but seem likely to be more numerous

Required: Prepare a five-year Required Reading

in particular disciplinary sub-sets. Used in headings for problems and lists in textbooks

5 persist persisted persistence persistent: 35 uses persistently persisting persists Category 1. Major Collocations and Recurrent Phrases Data and Examples persistent interaction (48.91) persistent http (30.16) persistent puckers (27.24) persistent endo (25.03) persistent sodium (25.03) Analysis and Comments The highest collocates using loglikelihood in Wordsmith Tools 4.0. The number is parenthesis is the log likelihood. See chapter XXXX for a discussion of statistical measures of collocational relationships. These are not necessarily set phrases but are collocational relationships and thus other words might be inserted as in

and persistent (32.18) conformations persistent


a persistent (27.29) frequent persistent (25.66) more persistent (23.61) persistent http persistent puckers persistent endo

conformations persistent persistent interaction

Some of the noun phrases with persistent seem to be edging toward technical language with set phrases that are likely to be of more restricted use than words in the higher frequencies that exhibit wider ranges of use. For example, persistent-connection http or persistent C3 endo puckers. While the data on collocations and phrases is limited because the use of persistent is so rare, the data do suggest relationships that could be suggestive for analysis in other sources. For example, the strong pull between conformations and persistent is shown by the 542,000 uses of the two words near each other in web-based materials on google. The words persistent and interaction were used in the same environment on google 2,870,000 times. Thus, other sources might be used to confirm the importance of particular collocations and phrases and/or to confirm their limitation to particular discourses. (Google

6 search on March 16, 2007.)

and persistent (6) a persistent (2) the persistent (2) persistent interaction (2) some persistent (2) of persistent (2) the repeated and persistent attempts of most modern judicial systems less-specific, close, and persistent interaction of sodium ions a single-minded and persistent obsession with knowledge persistent interaction persistent sodium

The six most frequent clusters. Because of the limited use of this word, no three-word clusters occur in the corpus. Two-word set phrases are given here. The number in parenthesis is the raw frequency count:. The pattern tool in Wordsmith Tools 4.0 showed a lengthy frame around persistent. Note that such frames do not often use all of the possible words. Also, the two-word phrase and persistent is a component of this frame. The [word] and persistent [word] of

2. Other Patterns

more frequent and more persistent than was observed conformations that are persistent for longer than the oldest, most persistent, and most cohesive forms

Typical use is as an attributive adjective (31 of 35 uses). One use is with offenders but other nouns refer to non-animate abstractions like expansion, optimism, expansion, marginalization, increase. used in comparisons one formed with than but in other patterns, too

3. Additional Information

persistent interaction

18 of the 35 uses are in "science": The use in the sciences is neutral and means "ongoing" without any suggestion that the continuation is a problem. The major trend in the other disciplinary areas is to associate the word with negative meanings. Three uses offer in the "law" subcorpus; all are negative in tone or

persistent offenders

despite the repeated and persistent attempts some persistent administrative problems. the problems of persistent labor surplus areas a persistent public perception that the Employment Contracts Act is unfair


Five uses are in "commerce; three of those uses seem negative in tone.

significant and persistent failure. persistent mutual antagonism Nine uses in the arts; six used in clearly negative settings. persistent downward revision a single-minded and persistent obsession persistent economic difficulties chronically persistent shortage of mental health manpower the persistent marginalisation and impoverishment." persistent problems adolescent selfconsciousness is probably quite persistent. he's so persistent and so strong and so invincible, that, maybe at the end, he's presented as a contrast.

Persistent is found only 3 times in MICASE spoken academic English (1.6 uses per million words in MICASE vs. 10 uses per million words in the AWL corpus). Two of the uses in MICASE have a clearly negative tone: The even more limited use of persistent in spoken academic English points to differences between academic writing and speaking explored by Biber (2006), Carter and McCarthy (2006), and Pickering and Byrd (forthcoming) . Note that only one of these uses is as an attributive adjective in contrast to the use in AWL. All three of these uses are in

8 the social sciences or arts rather than in the sciences, commerce, or law. The negative tone fits the general pattern of meaning found in the AWL corpus for non-science uses of persistent. Medical uses such as persistent cough are not included in AWL corpus. Note contrast with the conversational cough that just wont go away. On March 5, 2007, Google showed 45,100,000 uses of persistent. Persistent cough was 960,000 of these; persistent headache was counted 1, 020,000 times; persistent pain was found 1, 420,000 times. As a result of numerous newspaper articles about a woman in the State of Florida in the U.S., the term persistent vegetative state.

persistent cough persistent pain persistent vegetative state

9 Selected Bibliography of Publications on AWL Coxhead, A. (2006). Essentials of teaching academic vocabulary. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Coxhead, A. (2000). A new academic word list. TESOL Quarterly, 34(2), 213-238. Coxhead, A., & Byrd, P. (Forthcoming). Preparing writing teachers to teach the vocabulary and grammar of academic prose. Journal of Second Language Writing. Coxhead, A., Bunting, J., Byrd, P., & Moran, K. (forthcoming). The Academic Word List: Collocations and recurrent phrases. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. Pickering, L., & Byrd, P. (Forthcoming). Investigating connections between spoken and written academic English: Lexical bundles in the AWL and in MICASE. In D. Belcher & A. Hirvela (Eds.), The Oral/Literate Connection: Perspectives on L2 Speaking, Writing and Other Media Interactions. . Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. Selected Bibliography of Web-based Resources Averil Coxheads Website at Massey University has links to the Academic Word List site with the word families and headwords given in different printable lists. Also, the site lists her publications: http://language.massey.ac.nz/staff/ac.shtml Copies of the materials used in this TESOL presentation are available on Pat Byrds website at http://www2.gsu.edu/~eslhpb/PatByrd/ Corpus-based Reference Resources for Writing Teachers & Materials Developers Biber, D., Conrad, S., & Leech, G. (2002). Longman student grammar of spoken and written English. Harlow, England: Pearson Education. Biber, D., Johansson, S., Leech, G., Conrad, S., & Finegan, E. (1999). Longman grammar of spoken and written English. Harlow, England: Pearson Education Limited. Carter, R., & McCarthy, M. (2006). Cambridge grammar of English: A comprehensive guide. Spoken and written English grammar and usage. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Macmillan English dictionary for advanced learners of American English.(2002). Oxford: Macmillan Education.