Working Papers in Language Pedagogy
School of English and American Studies - Eötvös Loránd University
Rákóczi út 5, 1088 Budapest, Hungary tel.: (36-1)4855200 / ext. 4424 firstname.lastname@example.org
HU ISSN 1789 - 3607
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Welcome to the first volume of WoPaLP - Working Papers in Language Pedagogy. It is a good cause for celebration that we can now provide a new publication forum for researchers working towards their PhD in the field of language pedagogy and applied linguistics. We hope that the articles published here will be of interest to fellow PhD students as well as teachers and researchers interested in the study of language and language-related problems in situations in which people learn, teach and use language. We also intend these papers to serve as an encouragement to novice researchers by offering different models for conducting research in education in terms of identifying areas to be investigated, conceptualizing research methods and writing up the article in a commendable way.
What made the creation of this journal possible were the concerted efforts of the authors, their course tutors and the reviewers. Publishing papers is an important event for every researcher, and probably even more so for those at the beginning of their career; the authors of this first issue of WoPaLP have fully proven that they are well on their way towards obtaining their PhDs. They have mostly written about topics that are part of or leading up to their dissertation research. Appreciation is also due to the course tutors of the PhD Programme in Language Pedagogy of Eötvös Loránd University. They were the first to encourage the programme participants to carry on with their plans, and to refine and improve their research. At the same time they were also their first critical readers who gave conscientious and detailed feedback to help the authors redraft their work. Special thanks go to the members of our Advisory and Editorial Boards who have recommended the papers for publication from among the initial submissions, and have contributed to ensuring the standards of quality of this journal by reviewing the articles and by advising the authors of ways to improve their work. Finally, let us also express our gratitude to the proofreaders who have made sure that the use of English is fully appropriate in the articles written by non-native speakers of English.
The volume contains seven articles which neatly reflect the complexity and diversity of current research conducted within language pedagogy. The last couple of decades have brought remarkable improvement in research conducted in the field: language pedagogy has become a multidisciplinary field of study that builds upon and develops further the theories and methodology of several other related disciplines such as discourse analysis, psycholinguistics, sociolingustics, pedagogy, etc., thus reaching far beyond the borders of what is traditionally referred to as “methodology”. Hence the diversity of the studies published in this volume, which range from discourse and pragmatic analysis, through genre analysis to actual classroom research in teacher education.
The first article by Zsuzsanna Walkó examines how four research articles published in the field of ELT represent the context they investigate. To do this she uses the concepts and categories of pragmatic politeness. She reveals differences in the authors’ approach to research, and points out that there is a systematic process at work in dealing with the face needs of practitioners in research reports. The next article by Francis Prescott also focuses on the academic context, but deals with essays produced by novice student writers. He conducted an exploratory study on the organisational strategies in the writing of entry-level university students and warns of the weaknesses in the students’ writing that call for further research. The following paper by Dávid Veljanovszki tackles issues connected to academic speech events. He identified the most frequently occurring academic speech events at language specialisation courses at a law school, and juxtaposed the practice and needs at these language classes. The results of his study point to a high degree of consciousness on the teachers’ part to reconcile the aims of content-based instruction with the diverse aspects of communicative ESP teaching. The subsequent two articles deal with business English, more specifically the genre of business presentations. Jasmina Sazdovska describes three phases of the development of students participating in a 15-week business presentation skills course. The results of her analyses of the structure of the content of presentations and the communicative strategies applied in them contribute to more effective instruction, refining the coding system of presentation transcripts, and offer a springboard for further analysis of the genre. To continue with the educational benefits of teaching presentation skills, Klára Bereczky’s study is about cohesion, more precisely, conjunctive cohesion in English and Hungarian business presentations. She concludes that since cohesion is claimed to significantly contribute to discourse comprehension, students’ awareness must be raised of its special role. The next study turns towards the study of political discourse. Gordon Dobson presents a critical discourse analysis of two election manifestos and highlights the textual representation of a political paradigm shift. Based on a comparative analysis of the contents and the language of the two texts, he draws the reader’s - as well as language learners’ and teachers’ - attention to the importance of critical reading as well. The paper closest to classroom practice and drawing directly on it is Stefka Barócsi’s explorations of classroom observation practices in a particular context of teacher training. She concludes that focused observation targeted on particular areas contributes beneficially to the development of trainee teachers.
We hope you will find the first issue of WoPaLP relevant to your research and educational context, and look forward to your comments and contributions so that we can continuously improve the quality of the journal.
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Zsuzsanna Walkó: EFL Research Articles through the Lens of Pragmatic Politeness
Francis Prescott: Organizational Strategies in the Writing of Entry-Level University Students
Dávid Veljanovszki: Students’ Academic Speech Events as Seen by Students and Teachers in a
Hungarian EFL Setting
Jasmina Sazdovska: A Three-Phase Discourse Analysis of Student Business Presentations
Klára Bereczky: Marking Logical Connection in Presentations
Gordon Dobson: The Textual Representation of a Political Paradigm Shift: A Critical Discourse
Analysis of Two Election Manifestos
Stefka Barócsi: The Role of Observation in Professional Development in Foreign Language
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© ELTE Language Pedagogy Doctoral Programme, Budapest