INSTITUTE OF EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES
Ph.D. PROGRAM IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE EDUCATION
Ph.D. Thesis Defense
A CORPUS ANALYSIS OF ECONOMICS TEXTBOOKS
Jerome C. Bush
Date & Time: Wednesday, May 27th, 2020, 14:00
Google Hangouts Meet: Online Video Conference:
All interested are cordially invited.
Many universities in Turkey and other non-English speaking countries are now offering English as a Medium of Instruction (EMI) programs. A call has been made to move preparatory school curriculums away from general English proficiency and base their curriculums on English for Specific Academic Purposes (ESAP) using a Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) model. However, CLIL programs have had a number of problems being successfully implemented. Therefore, this dissertation suggests using corpus analysis to determine discipline specific language that can be incorporated into classrooms via regular language teaching methodology. To this end, a corpus of economics textbooks has been compiled and a lexico-grammatical analysis has been conducted. The main corpus includes forty-nine textbooks including macroeconomics, microeconomics, and specialized economics textbooks (e.g. Economics for Social Studies). Economics textbooks are used as the focus of the study because they are a core aspect of a commonly required course, they are difficult for students to read, and little research exists on them. The study was driven by four research questions regarding frequent lexical items, lexical distributions, N-grams (also called chunks or lexical bundles), and grammar. The investigation into the lexical items analyzed the corpus in terms of frequency, keyness and uniqueness compared to the Academic Word List, the General Service List, and the Corpus of Contemporary American English. This resulted in a word list that now stands as the Economic Word List (EWL). Both the lexical distribution analysis and grammatical analysis found substantial differences in complexity, style, and variance in the frequency of the parts of speech. The current study was able to establish discipline specific vocabulary and grammatical patterns separate from general English. The suggestion was made to include such discipline specific language in preparatory schools and specific suggestions on how to create materials based on discipline specific word lists are given.