Language and Education Network - Research Seminar

Understanding Relationships between Collocations and Writing Quality

A Graduate School of Education research event
Date23 November 2020
Time17:00 to 18:00
PlaceZOOM

Lee McCallum (University of Exeter): Understanding Relationships between Collocations and Writing Quality: Insights from a Corpus of First Year Composition Essays

Over the last decade, studies have shown how the diverse and sophisticated use of collocations in student writing has a relationship with grades awarded by raters (e.g., Bestgen & Granger, 2014; Paquot, 2019). However, these studies have a number of contextual and methodological limitations. This session details these limitations and empirically shows how my doctoral thesis tackled them when analysing a corpus of L1 and L2 student essays from a First Year Composition (FYC) programme in the USA. The session begins with an overview of past collocation studies and goes on to describe how a cluster analysis was used to tap into different types of collocation or association measures.  It then considers how these measures were used in a predictive model of students’ grade scores. The session presents the findings from both of these endeavours and concludes with a discussion of the implications this work has for the context under study, its drive to promote enhanced language instruction and some thoughts on where we go next in this measurement journey.


ProviderGraduate School of Education
Intended audienceAcademic staff and students
Registration informationContact event organiser for event link
OrganizerPhil Durrant
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