Investigating the Discourse Competence in Essay Writing with Reference to the Third Level EFL Students


Master's Thesis, 2017
169 Pages, Grade: Excellent

Excerpt

CONTENTS

Dedication

Acknowledgements

Abstract

Contents

List of Tables

List of Figures

List of Abbreviations

CHAPTER ONE: GENERAL INTRODUCTION
1.0 Introduction
1.1 Background of the Study
1.2 Statement of the Problem
1.3 Aims of the Study
1.4 Research Questions
1.5 Significance of the Study
1.6 Research Methodology
1.6.1 Methods of the Study
1.6.1.1 Population of the Study
1.6.1.2 Sample of the Study
1.6.2 Methods of Data Collection and Analysis
1.7 Limitation of the Study
1.8 Structure of the Study

Chapter Two: Literature Review
2.0Introduction7
2.1 Studies in Discourse Competence7
2.2 Definitions of Discourse
2.2.1 Discourse Competence
2.3 What is Discourse Analysis
2.4 Text Linguistics and Discourse
2.5 Cohesion and Linguistic Structure
2.5.1 Texture and Structure
2.6 The General Meaning of Cohesion
2.7 Discourse Analysis and Grammar
2.8 Cohesio
2.9 Grammatical Cohesion and Textuality
2.10 Types of Grammatical cohesion26
2.10.1 Reference
2.10.1.1 Types of Reference
2.10.1.1.1 Personal Reference
2.10.1.1.2 Demonstrative Reference
2.10.1.1.3 Comparative Reference
2.10.2 Substitution
2.10.2.1 Nominal Substitution
2.10.2.2 Verbal Substitution
2.10.2.3 Clausal Substitution
2.10.3 Ellipsis
2.10.3.1 Nominal Ellipsis
2.10.3.2 Verbal Ellipsis
2.10.3.3 Clausal Ellipsis
2.10.4 Conjunction
2.10.4.1 Additive Conjunctions
2.10.4.2 Adversative Conjunctions
2.10.4.3 Causal Conjunctions
2.10.4.4 Temporal Conjunction
2.11 Types of Lexical Cohesion
2.11.1 Reiteration
2.11.1.1 Repetition
2.11.1.2 General Noun
2.11.1.3 Superordinate
2.11.1.4 Synony
2.11.2 Collocatio
2.12 Summary

Chapter Three: Methodology of the Study
2.0 Introduction
3.1 Data Collection Instruments
3.1.1 The Teachers' Questionnaire
3.1.1.1 The Aim of the Questionnaire
3.1.1.2 The Design
3.1.1.3 The Administration
3.1.2 The Students' Writing Task.
3.1.2.1 The Aim of the Writing Task
3.1.2.2 The Administration
3.2 Piloting the Instruments
3.3 The Subjects
3.4 Validity and Reliability of the Data Collection Instruments
3.4.1 Data Validity
3.4.2 Data Reliability
3.5 Summary

Chapter Four: Data Analysis and Interpretation
4.0 Introduction
4.1 The Teachers' Questionnaire Analysis
4.1.1 An Overall Discussion of the Questionnaire.
4.2 The Students' Writing Task
4.2.0 Introduction
4.2.1 Analysis of the Result
4.2.2 Students' Use of Grammatical and Lexical Cohesive Devices
4.2.2.1 Students' Use of Grammatical Cohesive Devices
4.2.2.1.1 Students' Use of Reference
4.2.2.1.1.1 Students' Use of Personal Reference
4.2.2.1.1.2 Students' Use of Demonstrative Reference
4.2.2.1.1.3 Students' Use of Comparative Reference
4.2.2.1.2 Students' Use of Conjunction
4.2.2.1.2.1 Students' Use of Additive Conjunctions
4.2.2.1.2.2 Students' Use of Adversative Conjunctions
4.2.2.1.2.3 Students' Use of Causal Conjunction
4.2.2.1.2.4 Students' Use of Temporal Conjunctions
4.2.2.1.3 Students' Use of Substitution.
4.2.2.1.3.1 Students' Use of Nominal Substitution
4.2.2.1.3.2 Students' Use of Verbal Substitution
4.2.2.1.4 Students' Use of Ellipsis
4.2.2.1.4.1 Students' Use of Nominal Ellipsis
4.2.2.1.4.2 Students' Use of Verbal Ellipsis
4.2.2.1.4.3 Students' Use of Clausal Ellipsis
4.2.2.2 Students' Use of Lexical Cohesive Devices
4.2.2.2.1 Students' Use of Reiteration
4.2.2.2.1.1 Students' Use of Repetition
4.2.2.2.1.2 Students' Use of General Noun
4.2.2.2.1.3 Students' Use of Superordinate
4.2.2.2.1.4 Students' Use of Synonym
4.2.2.2.2 Students' Use of Collocation
4.2.3 General Comments
4.2.4 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Grammatical and Lexical Cohesive Devices
4.2.4.1 Appropriate versus Inappropriate Use of Grammatical Cohesive Devices
4.2.4.1.1 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of References
4.2.4.1.1.1 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Personal Reference
4.2.4.1.1.2 Appropriate Versus Reference
4.2.4.1.1.3 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Comparative Reference
4.2.4.1.2 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Conjunction
4.2.4.1.2.1 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Additive Conjunction
4.2.4.1.2.2 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Adversative Conjunction
4.2.4.1.2.3 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Causal Conjunction
4.2.4.1.2.4 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Temporal Conjunctions
4.2.4.1.3 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Substitution
4.2.4.1.3.1 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Nominal Sub stitution
4.2.4.1.3.2 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of VerbalSub stitution
4.2.4.1.4 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use Ellipsis
4.2.4.1.4.1 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Nominal Ellipsis
4.2.4.1.4.2 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Verbal Ellipsis
4.2.4.1.4.3 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Clausal Ellipsis
4.2.4.2 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Lexical Cohesive Devices
4.2.4.2.1 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Reiteration
4.2.4.2.1.1 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Repetition
4.2.4.2.1.2 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of General Noun
4.2.4.2.1.3 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Superordinate
4.2.4.2.1.4 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Synonym
4.2.4.2.2 Appropriate Versus Inappropriate Use of Collocation
4.2.5 General Comments on Students' Errors of Grammatical andLexical Cohesive Device s
4.2.5.1 Students' Inappropriate Use of Grammatical Cohesive Devices
4.2.5.1.1 Reference
4.2.5.1.2 Conjunction
4.2.5.1.3 Substitu0tion
4.2.5.1.4 Ellipsis
4.2.5.2 Students' Inappropriate Use of Lexical Cohesive Devices
4.2.5.2.1 Reiteration
4.2.5.2.1.1 Repetition
4.2.5.2.1.2 General Noun
4.2.5.2.1.3 Superordinate
4.2.5.2.1.4 Synonym.
4.2.5.2.2 Collocation..
4.2.6 Summary

Chapter Five: Conclusion
5.0 Introduction
5.1 A Summary of the Study
5.2 Conclusions and Implications
5.3 Recommendations
5.4 Suggestions for Further Research
5.6 Summary

References

Appendix (A)

Appendix (B)

Abstract in Arabic

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

At first, I would like to express my extreme gratitude to A lla h, the Almighty, who has helped me, enlightened my heart and mind with faith and knowledge and provided me with health, strength and confidence to accomplish this work.

I would like to express my deepest gratitude to my supervisor D r. Saleh Ahmed Karama f or the invaluable comments, guidance, suggestions, constant encouragement, assistance and support he has offered me in every step of this study. I appreciate his vast knowledge and skill in many areas concerning this research work.

I also wish to express my appreciation and gratitude to Dr. Adel Abdulkhaliq AL- Subaihi for all his assistance, guidance, and advice from the very early stage of this research.

Special thanks go to Dr. Abdulnaser M. AL-Nakeeb for his generous support and consultation he has offered me.

I wish to thank all the MA staff members of the Department of English for their effort in the field of Applied Linguistics. Especially the former headmaster; Dr. Zahra AL-Sakaf and the present headmaster; Dr. Anis A. Obadi.

My special thanks go to every member who had discussed my proposal and judged my questionnaire, Dr. Khalid Al-Suba'e, Dr.Saud A. Belfiq, Dr. Jaklin Mansour, Dr, Shafiqa Faker, Dr. Fauzia Salim.

I wish to thank all my colleagues in the MA in Applied Linguistics especially my dear friend Mr. Waleed A. Gobran who has given me support and assistance.

I would like to record my deep thanks to my colleagues in Dep. of English, Faculty of Education/Radfan; Dr. Faris Al-Shuaibi, Dr. Ali Hydara, Mr. Adeeb Mohsen, Mr. Abdulmajeed Fadhel, Mr. Wael Yahya, Miss Summya Mohamed and Mr. Nashwan Naji for responding to the questionnaire and their help.

I wish to record my thanks to Mr. Aref Nasi, Miss Shima'a Hawaider, Mr. Hafiz

Kasim and Mr. Sabry AL-Wahadi for supplying me with references.

I wish to thank the third level English students at Faculty of Education/Radfan who contributed in the data collection.

Special thanks go to my friends Mr. Mansuor S. Lakhjaf and Fadhel M. Shafal who stood beside me during the hardest time and the toughest situations during preparing this study.

At last, I sincerely thank my family (wife and children) for their patience and encouragement for living away from them during my study at Aden University and at the time of preparing this study.

ABSTRACT

Writing is considered as a difficult process even in the first language (L1). It is even more complicated to write in a foreign language (FL).

Writing in a (FL) often presents the greatest challenge to the students at all stages of their learning, particularly essay writing, students write essays without serious grammatical errors or misspellings; however, their essays are still disconnected and incoherent.

This illogicality is mainly caused by the errors at the discourse level.

EFL third-level English students at Faculty of Education/Radfan, University of Aden often face many problems when they write essays in English. Thus, this study aims at investigating the students' discourse competence in essay writing.

This study also aims at exploring the causes that make the students commit discourse errors and to what extent the students' incompetency affects their writing negatively.

To find out the reasons that might lead to the problems under investigation, two instruments were employed to collect data; the first instrument was the teachers' questionnaire, which was responded to by five teachers who teach writing and composition in the Department of English at Faculty of Education/Radfan, University of Aden. The second one was the students' writing task; through which twenty-five students were required to write an argumentative essay.

The analyses and interpretations of the result obtained by the two instruments can be summed up as follows:

The teachers supplied the researcher with valuable information that made the students commit discourse errors when writing essays. Besides, they emphasized on the importance of drawing the students' attention to the grammatical and lexical cohesive devices to help them write proficiently. Moreover, they suggested some methods and strategies to be taken during teaching writing to overcome the students' problems.

The results obtained through the analyses of the students' writing task showed that the students' errors might be attributed to the inappropriate use of grammatical and lexical cohesive devices, such as the overuse of some devices and the absence of the others; however, the overuse was not appropriate. It was also noticed that the students managed to use some cohesive devices of each type, but they showed their ignorance of the others as in the case of substitution and ellipsis which were barely used, however that use was wrong.

It could be concluded that through the results, the researcher had a clear picture of the students' difficulties in English essay writing and how the errors affected their writing negatively and made them incompetent.

On the basis of the findings, the researcher proposed some solutions and suggestions that might help to overcome the problem under investigation.

LIST OF TABLES

Table 2.1: Types of Cohesive Relation.

Table 2.2: The Continuous, Linear or 'zig-zag' Progression.

Table 2.3: Different types of conjunctions

Table 4.4: Teachers' sex and qualifications

Table 4.5: Teachers' evaluation of proficient student

Table 4.6: Teachers' views of students' difficulty in expressing their ideas.

Table 4.7: Teachers' attitudes towards students' incompetent writing

Table 4.8: Teachers' feedback of students' grammar versus lexical cohesive

d e vices.

Table 4.9: Teachers' views of improving students' writing proficiency

Table 4.10: Teachers' views of the ways used in teaching writing and their negative effect on students' writing.

Table 4.11: Teachers' perception of the most reasons affecting students' writing proficiency negatively.

Table 4.12: Teachers' perception of students' incompetency in lexical cohesion

Table 4.13: Teachers' attitudes towards grammatical and lexical cohesion teaching

Table 4.14: Teachers' manner of teaching cohesive devices.

Table 4.15: Teachers' awareness-raising of cohesive devices.

Table 4.16: Teachers' views of the necessity of urge students to use cohesive devices in a larger context

Table 4.17: teachers' views of factors behind students' discourse errors in essay writing

Table 4.18: Teachers' views of the importance of cohesive devices

Table 4.19: Teachers' views of making students' concentrate on cohesive devices

Table 4.20: Teachers' sources to search for cohesive devices.

Table 4.21: Teachers' strategies of making students retrieve cohesive devices

Table 4.22: Raising teachers' awareness towards cohesive devices.

Table 4.23: Students' use of reference.

Table 4.24: Students' use of personal reference

Table 4.25: Students' use of demonstrative reference

Table 4.26: Students' use of comparative reference

Table 4.27: Students' use of conjunction

Table 4.28: Students' use of additive cohesive device

Table 4.29: Students' use of adversative cohesive device

Table 4.30: Students' use of causal cohesive device

Table 4.31: Students' use of temporal cohesive device

Table 4.32: Students' use of substitution

Table 4.33: Students' use of nominal substitution

Table 4.34: Students' use of verbal substitution

Table 4.35: Students' use of ellipsis

Table 4.36: Students' use of nominal ellipsis

Table 4.37: Students' use of verbal ellipsis

Table 4.38: Students' use of clausal ellipsis

Table 4.39: Students' use of reiteration

Table 4.40: Students' use of repetition

Table 4.41: Students' use of general noun

Table 4.42: Students' use of superordinate

Table 4.43: Students' use of synonym

Table 4.44: Students' use of collocation

Table 4.45: Students' use grammatical and lexical cohesive devices

Table 4.46: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of grammatical and lexical d e vices

Table 4.47: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of reference devices

Table 4.48: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of personal reference

Table 4.49: Appropriate versus t use of demonstrative reference

Table 4.50: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of comparative reference

Table 4.51: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of conjunction

Table 4.52: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of additive conjunction

Table 4.53: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of adversative Conjunction

Table 4.54: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of causal conjunction

Table 4.55: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of temporal conjunction

Table 4.56: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of substitution

Table 4.57: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of nominal substitution

Table 4.58: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of verbal substitution

Table 4.59: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of ellipsis

Table 4.60: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of nominal ellipsis

Table 4.61: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of verbal ellipsis

Table 4.62: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of clausal ellipsis

Table 4.63: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of reiteration

Table 4.64: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of repletion

Table 4.65: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of general noun

Table 4.66: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of superordinate

Table 4.67: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of synonym

Table 4.68: Appropriate versus inappropriate use of collocation

Table 4.69: An overall summary of the students' use of grammatical and lexical cohesive devices

LIST OF FIGURES

Figure (2.1): Cohesion Categories

Figure (2.2): Types of Reference

LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Chapter One

General Introduction

1.0 Introduction

In recent years, there have been numerous studies in discourse competence, but they are mainly concerned with using discourse in the classrooms by (EFL) teachers and how to develop and use it in its oral form with their students neglecting its written form. So this study looks at discourse competence in essay writing with reference to EFL students in their writing and tries to investigate the difficulties that students face when they write.

Among different skills of second language (L2), writing is considered to be the most difficult skill to master. This difficulty, according to Richards and Renandya (2002), "lies not only in generating and organizing ideas, but also in translating these ideas into readable discourse" (p. 303). So writing is considered a difficult process even in the first language (L1). It is even more complicated to write in a foreign language. Many studies indicate for the foreign language (EFL) students there tends to be interference from the first language in the process of writing in English (Cedar, 2004). Writing in a foreign language often presents the greatest challenge to the students at all stages of their learning particularly in essay writing, students write essays without serious grammatical errors or misspellings; however, their essays are still disconnected and incoherent, this illogicality is mainly caused by the errors at the discourse level.

Discourse errors are more serious than any other errors at different levels because they create serious problems to third-year English students of Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden. Teachers of writing or composition in this faculty are generally faced with students who have memorized a good amount of vocabulary and grammar rules, but the majority of these students fail to make their writing meaningful or free from discourse errors, so this results in failure in communication, misunderstanding and culture shock.

A better understanding of such a problem in the process of EFL writing might help teachers know students' difficulties in learning English. It might also aid in the adoption of appropriate teaching strategies to help students learn English writing skills better and write proficiently. As Richards and Renandya state:

There is no doubt that writing is the most difficult skill for L2 learners to master. The difficulty lies not only in generating and organizing ideas, but also in translating these notions into the dynamics of writing and its teaching as writing is a skill that not only is testing in very valid language examination, but also a skill that learners should possess and demonstrate in academic context. ( Richards & Renandya, 2002, p. 303)

The main aim of this study is to investigate the students' discourse competence in their essay writing. Through analyzing students' discourse errors, teachers can help them to communicate more effectively. By using theories of discourse competence, error analysis, discourse analysis and language transfer, this study tries to analyze the students' discourse errors at the micro-level and finds out their possible sources and give some recommendations on how to avoid committing such errors.

1.1 Background of the Study

Since this study is concerned with investigating and analyzing the discourse competence of the EFL students' essay writing, it is essential to conduct a research which will try to identify the causes that stand behind this problem. So this study investigates the discourse competence of the EFL students' essay writing at the Micro-Level, in other words, the grammatical cohesion and textuality, which contains the use of references, ellipses, substitutions and conjunctions (McCarthy, 1991, p.35). In addition to grammatical textuality, cohesion also operates within lexis and materializes in a numerous of lexical relations

"It is in discourse and through discourse that all of other competencies are realized. And it is in discourse and through discourse that the manifestation of other competencies can best be observed, researched and assessed" (Celce-Murcia & Olshtain, context 16). Researchers such as Halliday and Hasan see that "the concept of a tie makes it possible to analyze a text in terms of its cohesive properties" (Halliday & Hasan,1976, p.4). That is; using linguistic ties makes the text more cohesive and understandable.

As being an English teacher, the researcher is well aware of the fact that discourse competence constitutes a serious problem to EFL students of the third level English major at the Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden. It seems that students do not use grammatical cohesive devices efficiently for having problems in writing effective discourse in general and using cohesive devices in particular.

The researcher's attention has been paid by different aspects of discourse especially cohesion problems from which students complain. Hence, the current study will investigate the discourse competence that students face in their essay writing.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

It has been noticed (through the researcher's experience in teaching writing) that EFL students make discourse errors in their writing activities in English as the case of the third level at the Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden who usually make errors in their writing. This is a serious problem even with those who can write without making any serious grammatical errors, their writing is still incoherent and illogical. Thus, this research will define the discourse errors, i.e., the grammatical and lexical cohesive devices in which students are incompetent and find out the reasons that make the students commit such errors.

1.3 Aims of the Study

This study aims at:

- Exploring the negative effect of discourse incompetency on students' writing.
- Analyzing the discourse incompetency of EFL students' essay writing (i.e., error incompetency).
- Exploring the main categories of discourse errors committed by EFL students.
- Offering some solutions and recommendations to be applied in teaching essay writing to overcome such problems.

1.4 Research Questions

The research attempts to answer the following questions:

1 - To what extent does the discourse incompetence have negative effect on students' writing?
2 - What are the causes that make EFL students commit discourse errors when writing essays?
3 - What are the main categories of discourse errors made by EFL students?
4 - What are the solutions that might help to solve such a discourse incompetency?

1.5 Significance of the Study

Learning a second or a foreign language is a complex process which needs a long time to make the learner skillful in that language. Learners go through different developmental strategies to be fluent and accurate in a foreign language. At the first stages, they try to apply the main rules of their native language in learning that foreign language. The application of the first language rules may make foreign language learners commit errors especially when they write, whereas in the case of this study students are not in their first stages of learning, but rather in their advanced level of learning a foreign language.

So their problem is mainly ascribed to the discourse incompetence in using grammatical cohesive devices when they write essays. That problem may affect their production negatively.

For this reason, it is significant to conduct a research to investigate the main reasons that make EFL students of third level at Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden commit different types of discourse errors. Moreover, it is important to see the main kinds of linguistic ties EFL students commit in their writing.

Investigating and analyzing the discourse errors of EFL students is very essential to know the weaknesses of the students. Knowing the most serious errors made by EFL students makes teachers give more attention to them and take that into account for enhancing the discourse competence of EFL students at Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden.

1.6 Research Methodology

1.6.1 Methods of the Study:

1.6.1.1 Population of the study:

the participants are the students from the Department of English at Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden. They are males and females.

1.6.1.2 Sample of the Study:

Twenty-five of the students were selected randomly from the third level of English students. Moreover, five teachers who teach in the same department especially who teach writing and composition were selected.

1.6.2 Methods of Data Collection and Analysis:

To collect the required data, the researcher used two instruments: the teachers' questionnaire and the students' writing task. A questionnaire which is administrated to five teachers of writing in the same faculty. Writing task; the students from English department, third level in the same faculty were requested to write an essay in English language.

The current study employs the quantitative research method; such a method provides a much more detailed and comprehensive picture of what is investigated.

1.7 Limitations of the Study

Since this study is concerned with investigating discourse competence in essay writing of EFL students, it focuses on the students' use of cohesive devices at the Micro-Level, that is, (grammatical and lexical cohesion) in which EFL students commit errors, but the Macro- Level is not included in this study. In addition, this study is confined to the 2016 –2017 batch of third level English major students at Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden, but not other levels of the same Faculty or other Faculties of education at the same university.

1.8 Structure of the Study

The research is organized of five chapters as follows:

Chapter one is devoted to providing general introductory remarks of the study; including general introduction to the topic, statement of the research problem, aims of the study, research questions, significance of the study, research methodology, limitation of the study and structure of the study.

Chapter two mainly aims at reviewing the literature of the previous studies related to the area of the study. Chapter three will be concerned with the research methodology of data collection; it tries to provide a discussion of the approach used in the research.

Chapter four deals with the analysis of the collected data. It also presents and discusses the findings of the research in an attempt to answer the questions of the research.

The last chapter concludes the research results and provides some suggestions and recommendations and references.

Chapter Two

Literature Review

2.0 Introduction

The purpose of this literature review is to shed light on some aspects related to the discourse competence in essay writing in general, with special reference to the third level of EFL students of English at Faculty of Education/ Radfan, University of Aden.

2.1 Studies on Discourse Competence

The research on discourse competence conducted in the last century is not sufficient to explain the development of discourse competence.

Scarcella, Andersen, and Crashen (1990) once argued that "a great number of scholars explained the role of discourse competence in the development of communicative competence; however, up to the time of the study, few had investigated the acquisition of this competence, and few attempts had been made to pedagogical patterns and techniques for discourse competence development" ( Liu-Yuan, 2012, p. 10).

2.2 Definitions of Discourse:

2.2.1 Discourse Competence:

Discourse competence through which learners can interpret larger contexts and produce longer stretches of language with continuity and logical flow.

The National Chinese Language Conference (NCLC, 2003 & 2004), determines "one's ability to construct comprehensible output in meaningful interaction and to receive language input efficiently" ( Liu-Yuan, 2012, p.7).

Successful second language acquisition is associated with a non-native speaker's ability to use the language naturally in communicative situations with non-native speakers of the language. Thus, the goal of second language acquisition for learners is not to learn more knowledge "about" the language (as may be demonstrated in tests) but to develop communicative competence in the second language (Yule, 2010).

"In spite of the fact that grammatical competence provides the foundation for the accurate use of words in structures, a focus on other forms of competence for foreign language learning is equal or greater benefit in improving the learners' ability to interpret or generate the second language appropriately". (Liu-Yuan, 2012)

As Yule (2010), states that "producing interpretable utterances in communication is a very important quality in learner's development of second language ability".

Discourse competence provides the means through which words, phrases, and sentences are put together to generate longer texts, either in speech or in writing.

To interpret discourse, it involves listening and reading skills. Oral discourse competence includes the concept of "speakability", as Xing (2006) proposed, which describes language users' ability to produce, developing their discourse smoothly in various oral communicative contexts to achieve their communicative goals based on utterances that are easily interpreted.

2.3 What is Discourse Analysis?

The term ''discourse analysis'' was used by Zellig Harris in 1952 at a time when linguistics was largely concerned with the analysis of single sentences.

The term discourse refers "both to what a text producer meant by a text and what a text means to the receiver" (Widdowson, 2007, p.7).

As Widdowson claims, "people produce texts to get a message across, to express ideas and beliefs, to explain something, to get other people to do certain things or to think in a certain way" (Widdowson, 2007, p. 6).

McCarthy (1991, p.7) indicates, ''Discourse Analysis is concerned with the study of the relationship between language and the contexts in which it is used. It grew out of work in different disciplines in the 1960s and early 1970s, including linguistics, semiotics, psychology, anthropology and sociology.''

As McCarthy (1991) states that, discourse is related to many disciplines, the principal concern of discourse analysis is to examine how any language produced by a given participant whether spoken or written is used in communication for a given situation in a given setting.

Allen and Corder (1974, p. 200) define discourse analysis as:

''Discourse analysis is taken to be the investigation into the formal devices used to connect sentences together''.

Thus, discourse analysis is concerned with written and spoken forms. Discourse devices also help to string language elements.

Fine (1988) state that:

The organization of the stretches of language greater than a sentence { It } can focus on conversation, written language, when searching for patterning of language. Discourse analysis must determine the units of these larger stretches of language, how these units are signaled by specific linguistic markers, and/or the processes involving in producing and comprehending larger stretches of language .

( Fine, 1988, p.1)

2.4 Text Linguistics and Discourse:

In their book Cohesion in English, Halliday and Hasan (1976, p. 1) define text as: "the word used to refer to any passage, spoken or written, of whatever length, that does form a unified whole"

A text is a unit of language in use. It is not a grammatical unit, like a clause or a sentence and it is not defined by its size.

Widdowson (1979) made a distinction between 'sentences in combination' i.e., text and 'use of sentences in combination', i.e., discourse, on the basis of this distinction, Edmondson (1981, p. 4) defines text as "a structured sequence of linguistic expressions forming a unitary whole" and discourse as "a structured event manifest in linguistic (and other) behavior".

It is significant that text exists in both written and spoken language. In the former, the writer who produces it, whereas in the latter it becomes language in use only if it is recorded, i.e., it will create discourse.

Thus, text is a linguistic product of discourse that can be studied without reference to its contextual elements as an evidence of linguistic rules "… 'text' is the linguistic context; the stable semantic meaning of words, and sentences, but not the inferences available to hearers depending upon the context in which words, expressions and sentences are used"

(Schiffirn, 1994, pp. 363-364).

However, what is important is that the text can only include some factors from the context which can be relevant to its interpretation. A text is not just a sequence of sentences strung together, but a sequence of units of sentences or parts of sentences; connected in some contextually appropriate ways.

" A text as a whole must exhibit the related but distinguishable properties of cohesion and coherence" (Lyons, 1981, p.198). Thus, cohesion is concerned with formal connectedness. Moreover, schemas' activation according to McCarthy (2001) is very necessary to contribute to forming a text because:

The text is not a container full of meaning which the reader simply downloads. How sentences related to one another and how the units of meaning combine to create a coherent extended text are the results of interaction between the readers world and the text. (McCarthy, 2001, p. 97)

Thus, text and discourse are used interchangeably focusing on language "beyond the sentence" in other words, to take context as part of any utterances or sentences.

Halliday and Hasan (1976) provided the most appropriate definition of the 'text', they consider a text as written or spoken stretches of the text; i.e., a text as stretch of written or spoken language which proposes that language follows a linear sequence where one line of text follows another with each line being linked to the previous line. This linear progression of the text creates a context of meaning.

Contextual meaning at the paragraph level referred to as coherence while their internal properties of meaning is referred to as "cohesion".

Th e main factors which constitute a text will be in the following definition:

A text is a unit of language in use. It is not a grammatical unit, like a clause or a sentence; and it is not defined by its size. A text is sometimes envisaged to be some kind of super sentence, a grammatical unit that is larger than a sentence but is related to a clause, a clause to a group and so on: by consistency, the composition of larger units out of smaller ones. But this is misleading. A text is not something that is like a sentence, only bigger; it is something that differs from a sentence in kind (…) A text does not consist of sentences it is realized by, or encoded in sentences.

(Halliday and Hasan, 1976, pp. 1-2)

Thus, the ability of the speaker to stretch a given discourse can be said to constitute a text. Cohesion then is a principle factor in determining texture since it is a means through which we can relate our utterance or sentences.

2.5 Cohesion and Linguistic Structure

2.5.1 Texture and Structure

Halliday and Hasan (1976) state that the concept of texture is entirely appropriate to express the property of "being a text".

"A text has texture, and this is what distinguishes it from something that is not a text (… ). The texture is provided by the cohesive relations"( Halliday and Hasan, 1976, p. 2), what makes any length of a text meaningful and coherent has been termed "texture". Texture is the basis for unity and semantic interdependence without text, and text without texture would just be a group of isolated sentences with no relation to one another. Moreover, cohesion relates to the "semantic ties" within text whereby a tie is made when there is some dependent link between items that combine to create meaning. Therefore texture is created with text when there are properties of coherence and cohesion outside of the apparent grammatical structure of the text.

Thus, texuality defined by De Beaugrande and Dressler (1981) in terms of communicative function the text is supposed to realize. Texuality is determined by some factors which depend on the participants, the intended message and the setting of occurrence…etc.

De Beaugrande and Dressler (1981) present a broader view; they define text as a communicative event that must satisfy the following seven criteria:

Cohesion: is the first standard or criterion of textuality; it refers to the surface relations between the sentences that create a text. i.e. to create connected sentences within a sequence.

The formal surface of the text components which works according to grammatical forms and conventions helps the reader / hearer to sort out the meaning and the uses. Coherence: refers to the relations held between the underlying text, which is made of concepts and relations and the amount of their relevance to the central thought of the text. It may refer to elements of knowledge or cognitive structures that do not have a linguistic realization but are implied by the language used, and thus influence the reception of the message by the interlocutor. Moreover, the concepts refer to the knowledge which can be activated in the mind whereas relations refer to the connection between the surface texts (concept).

Intentionality: refers to the producer's attitudes that the set of linguistic resources of the text should handle the text in a way that fulfills the procedures, intentions and communicates the message to be conveyed in an appropriate and successful way. Acceptability: concerns with the text receiver's attitude that the set of linguistic resources the text should provide the receiver an ability to perceive any relevance of the text in question, i.e. this criterion concerns the preparation of the hearer or reader to assess the relevance or usefulness of a given text.

Informativity: refers to the quantity and quality of new or expected information, i.e. it refers to the extent to which the presented information is known or not to the receiver.

Situationality: refers to the factors that make up a text relevant to a situation of occurrence. i.e., it can determine what is said, by whom, why, when and where.

Intertextuality: concerns the factors which make the use of one text dependent upon knowledge of one or more. Here it refers to two main facts:

( a) A text is always related to some preceding or simultaneous discourse; (b) texts are always linked and grouped in particular text varieties or genres (e.g., narrative, argumentative, descriptive, etc…) by formal criteria (Laura Alba-Juez, 2009, pp.6-7).

In spite of the considerable overlap between Text Linguistics and Discourse Analysis (both of them are connected with the notion of cohesion, for instance) the above criteria may help us make a distinction between them.

Tischer et al. (2000) explain that the first two criteria (cohesion and coherence) may be defined as text- internal, whereas the remaining criteria are text-external.

It could be said that text-internal elements constitute the text, while the text-external ones constitute the context (…) (Laura Alba-Juez, 2009, p. 7).

2.6 The General Meaning of Cohesion

Halliday and Hasan (1976) state that "the general meaning of cohesion is embedded in the concept of text" (p. 298).

Connor (1996, p. 83) states that "cohesive devices are words or phrases that act as signals to the reader in order to help the reader make connections with what has already been stated or soon will be stated"

One of Halliday and Hasan's systematic linguistic contributions is "the Theory of Cohesion" which measures cohesive links between sentences. According to their taxonomy (1976) which is summarized in the table below:

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Table 2.1: Types of Cohesive Relation (adapted from Halliday & Hasan 1976, p. 324)

2.7 Discourse Analysis and Grammar

Numerous researches in linguistics, sociolinguistics and psycholinguistics have been based on Halliday's Functional Grammar Theory (1985), one of the grammatical concepts of Halliday's Functional Grammar Theory is 'Theme and Rheme'.

The relationship between the grammatical form of a sentence and the wider context in which it occurs lies in the intersection between grammar / syntax and discourse analysis. Cohesion plays an extended role in this relation where the inclusion of the concepts Theme and Rheme are important in the progression of any discourse.

" Theme functions as the starting point for the message" (Halliday, 1985, p. 39), the element which the clause is going to be 'about' has a crucial effect in orienting listeners and readers. Theme is the starting point of the clause, realized by whatever element comes first, and

Rheme is the rest of the message, which provides the additional information added to the starting point and which is available for subsequent development in the text.

English learners consciously acquire the structure of English sentence either by repetition or drills or by more grammatical analysis. Thus, discourse analysts are interested in the implication of these different structural options for the creation of text. It seems well known that English has a quite fixed word order, normally summarized as "SVOA" that is, subject + verb + object + adverbial. "SVOA" means that a declarative statement must carry a subject at the front of the sentence, a verb after it and an object and/ or adverbial at the end of the sentence.

The different choice of Theme has contributed to a different meaning and English uses first clausal position as a signal to orient a different meaning of the sentences. For example:

Li Ping re ad a very good book.

A very good book, Li Ping read last night.

Last night Li Ping read a very good book.

What Li Ping read last night was a very good book.

Li Ping, he read a very good book last night.

(Taken from Wang, X. 2009).

In each case above, the writer starts the message from a different point, that is, to choose a different Theme for the clause. As Halliday (1994, p. 38) mentioned Theme as "the starting point for the message" or 'the ground from which the clause is taking off'. And also, the different choice of Theme has contributed to a different meaning. What makes these sentences different is that they differ in their choice of theme and they tell us what Li Ping, A very good book, Last night or what Li Ping read is going to be about.

Theme can be identified in different mood of a clause. The pattern can be summarized as follows.

Theme in declarative sentences:

Unmarked (Theme = Subject): subject is the 'normal' Theme choice. Nominal group functioning as a subject;

a. The two Indians stood waiting.
b . The Indian who was rowing them was working very hard.
c. Of course it' s an accident .

M arked (Theme ≠ Subject): a Theme that is something other than the subject, in a d ec larative clause, we shall refer to as a Marked Theme (Halliday, 1994, pp.44-48)

a. Across the bay they found the other boat.
b . And when you get down there you find he has not actually got any.
c. What she had felt he never knew.
d . Most troubling of all to some social scientists is the message men get that being a good father means learning how to mother.

The most usual form of marked Theme is an adverbial group, such as today, suddenly or prepositional phrase, such as at night, in the corner, without much hope, functioning as Adjunct in the clause.

Halliday (1994) describes the theme-rheme dichotomy. First the theme is marked in intonation as a separate tone unit, frequently followed by a brief pause. Second, only the basic elements of the kernel structure can become topic themes: the process (main verb), the participants (subject and object) and the circumstantial factor (adverbials). In English, three possible themes are found: Textual theme (discourse markers and conjunctions) + interpersonal theme (vocative) + topical theme (SVOA elements).

The addresser uses theme and rheme to highlight a piece of information in the sentence. For example, it is quite common that:

The theme and rheme are also used to organize information in the text. Thus, the rheme in one sentence becomes the theme in a following sentence:

"Theme / rheme assignment is a general way in organizing information and carrying reference over from one proposition to the text" (Widdoson, 2007, p.43).

Furthermore, there is also a thematic organization of the paragraph. In English, the sentence of a paragraph is also a theme of that paragraph (topic sentence), whereas the following sentences have a rhematic value (supporting sentences), which develop the idea proposed by the theme by means of examples, arguments, etc.

The continuous, linear or 'zig-zag' progression: in this sequence, an element that is first introduced in the Rheme of a clause becomes the Theme of the next clause, and so on. Each R becomes T of the next utterance.

T1…..R1

T2 (R1)….R2

T3 (R2)….R3

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Table 2.2:The Continuous, Linear or 'zig-zag' Progression (adapted from Danes', 1974)

2.8 Cohesion

Richards et al. (1985, p. 45) define cohesion as "the grammatical and/or lexical relationships between the different elements of a text. This may be the relationships between different sentences or between different parts of a sentence"

Cohesion is a semantic property of a text sticking together in some way; i.e., a cohesive text tends to link its sentences together semantically. This semantic aspect of cohesion has a relation with the reader who interprets the elements in a given co-text depending on the other element within the same co-text. Halliday and Hasan (1976) assert that:

c ohesion occurs where the INTERPRETATION of some element in the discourse is dependent on that of another. The one PRESUPPOSES the other, in the sense that it cannot be effectively decoded except by recourse to it. When this happens, a relation of cohesion is set up, and the two elements, the presupposing and the presupposed, are thereby at least potentially integrated into a text. (Halliday & Hasan, 1976, p.4) e .g. (a) Are the students playing football?

(b) Yes, they are.

In the example above, there is a link between 'the students' and 'they', and also between

'are' …' playing' and 'are' (Bamatraf, 2005, p. 29).

In fact, the presupposition is an important aspect in cohesion because it extracts the unrelated sentences by the connected one. Thus, relations in meaning in any sentence depending on the surrounding elements. "Cohesion refers to the range of possibilities that exist for linking something with that has gone before. Since this linking is achieved through relations in meaning" (Halliday & Hasan, 1976, p. 10).

To illustrate, let us examine the following example:

Wash and core six cooking apples. Put them in a fire proof dish. The item them in the second sentence refers back to six cooking apples in the first sentence. In this, since we cannot understand the second sentence without referring to the first one which gives sign to what them stands for. That is to say, them is an item to which it facilitates the reader's understanding of the relation between the sentences in the text.

As in the case of the above examples, cohesion is focused on the relation of the boundaries between sentences rather than within sentences, in other words, it is interested in the 'intersentence' which ensures texture. Moreover, although cohesion exists with the limit of a single sentence, it is of a less importance because the sentence is naturally cohesive due to its grammatical structure.

" Cohesive ties between sentences stand out more clearly because they are the only source of texture, with the sentence there are the structural relations as well" (Halliday & Hasan, 1976, p. 9).

F or instance, 'if you happen to see the admiral, don't tell him his ship's gone down. In this sentence, His and Him refer to ''admiral'' in the first half of the same sentence. Thus, the realization of cohesion within the sentence is governed by the rules of pronominalisation; i.e., the use of a given pronoun to be referred to is determined by the sentence structure. For example, a sentence such as John took John's hat off and hang John's hat on a peg: cannot be accounted as a cohesive sentence unless we use some of the

pronominal forms to be referred to the identity of the pronominal form. Then, let's consider that we are talking about the same John and the same hat. Meanwhile, we get sentence structure as: John took his hat off and hang it on a peg; in which his referred to John and it referred to hat (Halliday & Hasan, 1976, p.8).

The intersentence cohesion is the most important aspect cohesion. Halliday and Hasan point out that:

Cohesive relations have in principle nothing to do with sentence boundaries. Cohesion is a semantic relation between an element in the text and some other element that is crucial to the interpretation of it: but its location in the text is in no way determined by the grammatical structure the two elements, the presupposing and the presupposed, may be structurally related to each other or they may not .

(Halliday & Hasan, 1976, P. 8)

2.9 Grammatical Cohesion and Textuality

Halliday and Hasan (1976, p. 293) suggest that "a text is not just a string of sentences. That is, it is not simply a large grammatical unit, something of the same kind as a sentence but differing from it in size – a sort of supersentence".

G r ammatical cohesion refers to various grammatical devices that can be used to make relations among sentences more explicit. Cohesive devices are used to tie pieces of text together in a specific way. The aim is to help the reader understand the items referred to, the once replaced and even the item omitted (Harmer, 2004).

Textuality can be summed up by McCarthy (1991, p. 35) as "The feeling that something is a text and not just a random collection of sentences".

In contrast, to sentence grammar which focuses on the construction of only one sentence; text grammar is a discipline interested in the way sentences (in a text) are interrelated and combined together. For this reason, text grammar does appeal to discourse analysis which is constantly concerned with how sentences stick together.

Fur thermore, the combination of sentences using cohesion devices which have semantic relation need a shared linguistic environment to interpret items.

A sentence such as he said so is semantically correct as it is grammatically in that it means what it means though we do not know who is meant by he and what is meant by so.

To analyze a sentence, we have to seek in the surrounding environment what h e and so refer to many other examples in the various cohesive situations are going to be dealt with the forthcoming sections covering types of cohesive devices.

Cohesion according to Halliday and Hasan, is classified into two types:

Grammatical and lexical .

The former consists of reference, substitution, ellipsis and conjunction, while the latter consists of reiteration and collocation.

The system of cohesion described by Halliday and Hasan (1976) can be represented in

the following outline which describes the cohesive ties:

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

F igure (2.1): cohesion categories

(Adapted from Williams, 1983, p. 36)

2.10 Types of Grammatical Cohesion:

Halliday and Hasan (1976) provide us with the basic categories of grammatical cohesion pointing that we can systematize this concept by classifying it into a small number of distinct categories, they refer to them as: reference, substitution, ellipsis and conjunction; these categories have a theoretical basis and specific types of grammatical cohesion, which have also to provide a practical means for describing and analyzing texts.

2.10.1 Reference

The term 'reference' is traditionally used in semantics to define the relationship between a word and what it points to in the real world, but in Halliday and Hasan's model, it simply refers to the relationship between two linguistic expressions. Referencing indicates how the writer introduces participants and keeps track of them throughout the text.

Halliday and Hasan (1976, p.308) define reference as "… the relation between an element of the text and something else by reference to which it is interpreted in the given instance".

Halliday and Hasan (1976, p. 31) also point out that reference features cannot be semantically interpreted without referring to some other features in the text. A pronoun is the most common linguistic element as referring devices in a textual environment.

Reference can be accounted as "exophoric" or "endophoric" functions. This is because simply when we refer to a given item, we expect the reader to interpret it by either looking forward, backward and outward. Exophoric involves exercises that require the reader to look out of the text in order to interpret the referent. The reader, thus, has to look beyond or out of the text with a shared world between the reader and the writer.

" Exophoric reference directs the receiver 'out of' the text and into an assumed shared world" (McCarthy, 1991, p. 41).

F or example, ' that must have cost a lot of money', in this example we have looked out of the situation to retrieve the meaning of the sentence (Halliday & Hasan, 1976).

Endophoric function refers to the text itself in its interpretation. Brown and Yule (1983) point that "where their interpretation lies within a text they are called 'endophoric' relations and do from cohesive ties within the text" (p. 192).

End ophoric reference is itself of two classes: to start with, anaphoric relations is all kinds of activities which involve looking back in texts to find the referent. For example:

" It rained day and night for two weeks, the basement flooded and everything was under the water, it spoilt all our calculations" (McCarthy,1991, p. 36).

Here the first 'it' refers to the discourse itself, while the second 'it' refers to the event of two weeks, or the fact that it rained or flooded; i.e., the whole situation rather than an event in particular, whereas cataphoric relation looks forward for the interpretation, to exemplify the cataphoric reference, 'she was terribly afraid. All kinds of black memories of her childhood came up to her mind. She could not fight against them as had been her custom because simply Mary Brown was dying at the moment'.

This short text displays a number of cataphoric reference items which involve looking forward for determining what they refer to. In this example, all the pronouns (she/her) re f e r to Mary Brown. In this cataphoric reference, the referent has been withheld to the last sentence in order to engage the reader's / listener's attention.

Thus, Brown and Yule (1983) state that exophoric and endophoric are co-reference need a processor based on mental representation. On the one hand, we refer to the world, and on the other hand, we refer to the world created by the discourse.

Halliday and Hasan (1976, p.33) summarize the types of references in the following diagram:

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

Figure 2.2: Types of Reference.

2.10.1.1 Types of Reference:

According to Halliday and Hasan (1976, reference is of three types: personal, demonstrative, and comparative.

2.10.1.1.1 Personal Reference

Personal reference is reference by means of function in the speech situation, through the category of person.

- Personal pronouns (e.g., I, me, he, him, she, her, we, us, you, they, them, it, one).
- Possessive determiners (e.g., my, his, her, our, your, their, its, one's).
- Possessive pronouns (e.g., mine, his, hers, ours, yours, theirs, [its]). E.g., they told me you had gone by h er car.

2.10.1.1.2 Demonstrative Reference:

It is reference by means of location, on a scale of proximity. This, these and here imply proximity to the speaker.

That, those and there imply distance from the speaker. E.g., how do you like a cruise in that yacht?

P ick these up!

2.10.1.1.3 Comparative Reference

It is indirect reference by means of identity or similarity. It keeps track through indirect reference using adjectives like: same, equal, similar, different, else, better, and more and using adverbs like: so, such, similarly, otherwise, more, etc.

F or example: Jack has a white shirt. I bought the same shirt with him.

2.10.2 Substitution

Halliday and Hasan (1976, p. 90) define substitution as "'a grammatical relation', a relation in the wording rather than in the meaning". For instance:

This car is mine, but that one is yours. In the example, one substitutes or replaces for car.

It is important to mention that substitution and reference are different in what and where they operate, thus, substitution is concerned with relations related with wording, whereas reference is concerned with relations related with meaning. Substitution is a way to avoid repetition in the text itself; however, reference needs to retrieve its meaning from the situational or textual occurrence.

" In terms of linguistic system, reference is a relation on the semantic level, whereas a substitution is a relation on the lexicogrammatical level, the level of grammar and vocabulary, or linguistic form" (Halliday & Hasan, 1976, p. 89).

As such, we can substitute nouns, verbs, and clauses. Kennedy (2003) points out there are three types of substitutions: nominal, verbal and clausal substitution.

2.10.2.1 Nominal Substitution

Nominal substitution where noun or nominal group can be replaced by a noun. "One" / " ones" always operate as a head of … nominal group.

e .g., Let's go and see the bears. The polar ones are over on that rock. Or the substitution of a whole phrase by the same, For instance: Winter is often so damp. The same is true for the Summer.

2.10.2.2 Verbal Substitution

In verbal substitution, the common substitute is the verb "do" which is sometimes used in conjunction with "so" as in "do so".

e. g., Did Mary take the letter? She might have done. Here, done substitutes take.

Verbal substitutes:

- For verb: do, be and have.
- For process: do the same/likewise
§- For proposition: do so, be so.

e .g., The words did not come the same as they used to do.

e .g., I finally called on him. I have wanted to do (so) for a long time.

2.10.2.3 Clausal Substitution

In clausal substitution, the entire clause is presupposed, and the contrasting element is outside the clause.

" so" for positive and "not" for negative. e. g., a) Is there going to be an earthquake? b) It says so.

In the example above, "so" presupposes the whole of the clause 'there is going to be an earthquake' and contrastive environment is provided by the says which is outside it.

e .g., a) Has everyone gone home?

b ) I hope not.

In substitution, the substitute serves as a place-holding device, showing where something has been omitted and what its grammatical function would be.

2.10.3. Ellipsis

Ellipsis (zero substitution) is "the omission of elements normally required by the grammar which the speaker/writer assumes are obvious from the context and therefore need not be raised" (McCarthy, 1991, p. 43).

Halliday and Hasan (1976) say that:

Ellipsis occurs when something that structurally necessary is left unsaid. And the essential characteristic of ellipsis is that something which is present in the selection of underlying ('systematic') options is omitted in the structure whether or not the resulting structure is in itself incomplete. (Halliday & Hasan, 1976)

The relation between substitution and ellipsis is very close because it is merely that ellipsis is "substitution" by zero (0). What is essential in ellipsis is that some elements are omitted from the surface text, but they are still understood. Thus, omission of these elements can be recovered by referring to an element in the preceding text.

Harmer defines it as "(….) words are deliberately left out of a sentence when the meaning is still clear" (Harmer, 2004, p. 24).

The following example illustrates this:

e .g., Do you want to hear another song? I know twelve more (0).

It appears that the structure of the second clause indicates that there is something left out "songs", the omission of this feature kept the meaning still clear and there is no need of repetition; Carter et al. (2000, p. 182) state that "ellipsis occurs in writing when usually functions textually to avoid repetition where structures would otherwise be redundant".

Mc Carthy (1991, p. 43) points out that " the 'missing' element is retrievable verbatim from the surrounding text, rather in the way the anaphoric and cataphoric references are, are opposed to exophoric references".

e .g., The children will carry the small boxes, the adults the large ones .

Where 'will carry' is supplied from the first clause to the second. This type of main-verb ellipsis is anaphoric.

Sub stitution has three types. Kennedy (2003, p. 324) indicates that "ellipsis is the process by which noun phrase, verb phrase, or clause are deleted or "understood" when they are absent" the three types of ellipsis are nominal, verbal and clausal.

According to McCarthy (1991), English has broadly three types of ellipsis: nominal, verbal, and clausal.

2.10.3.1 Nominal Ellipsis

It often involves omission of a noun head-word:

e .g. Nelly liked the green tiles, myself I preferred the blue (0). In this example, the omission is concerned with tiles.

2.10.3.2 Verbal Ellipsis

It involves the omission of the lexical verb from a verb phrase. Two very common types of verbal group ellipsis are what Thomas (1987) calls echoing and auxiliary contrasting. Echoing repeats an element from verbal group:

e .g., A: Will anyone be waiting?

B: Jim will, I should think.

Contrasting is when the auxiliary changes: A: Has she remarried?

B: No, but she will one day, I'm sure. (Taken from McCarthy, 1991, pp. 43- 44).

2.10.3.3 Clausal Ellipsis

Clausal ellipsis is the ellipsis in which an entire clause is elided from a sentence. e.g. A: Why did you only set three places? Paul's staying for dinner, isn't he?

B: Is he? He didn't tell him (0). In this example the omission falls on the "Paul's staying for dinner".

e .g., A: Who could have broken those tiles?

B: I can't think who (0).

2.10.4. Conjunction

Conjunction acts as a cohesive tie between clauses or sections of text in such a way as to demonstrate a meaning pattern between them, though conjunctive relations are not tied to any particular sequence in the expression. Therefore, amongst the cohesion forming devices within text, conjunction is the least directly identifiable relation.

Because as Nunan (1993) points out, they use features to refer to the other parts of the text in order to make relationship between sentences extremely understood.

In his discussion of grammatical distributions to textuality, McCarthy state that: even though it is somewhat different from reference, ellipsis and substitution, a conjunction does not set off a search backward or forward for its referent, but it does presuppose a textual sequence and signals a relationship between segments of a discourse. ( McCarthy, 1991, p 46).

Halliday and Hasan describe it as follows:

In describing conjunction as a cohesive device, we are focusing attention not on the semantic relation as such, as realized throughout the grammar of the language, but on one particular aspect of them, namely the function they have of relating to each other linguistic elements that occur in succession, but are not related by other structural means . (Halliday & Hasan, 1976, p. 227)

Conjunction can be classified according to four main categories: additive, adversative, clausal and temporal.

2.10.4.1 Additive Conjunctions

Act to structurally coordinate or link by adding to presupposed item and are signaled through "and, also, too, furthermore. Additionally", etc. Additive conjunctions may also act to negate the presupposed item and are signaled by "nor, and…not, either, neither" etc.

e.g I don’t like smoking and neither does he.

(Derived from I do not like smoking. He does not like smoking).

2.10.4.2 Adversative Conjunctions

e .g., Peter is an English student, but he can't speak English.

2 .10.4.3 Causal Conjunctions

Causal relation involves primarily reason, result and purpose relations between the sentences. Causal words are signaled by "so, then, because, for, as a result, for this reason, in this respect", etc.

e .g., She studied much hardly as a result she passed the exam.

2.10.4.4 Temporal Conjunctions

Temporal conjunctions make link by signaling sequence or time and the relation between two successive sentences. Some sample temporal conjunctive signals are "then, next, after that, at this point", etc.

Williams (1983) summarized the different kinds of conjunctions in a text, based on the work of Halliday and Hasan (1976) in the following table:

Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten

[...]

Excerpt out of 169 pages

Details

Title
Investigating the Discourse Competence in Essay Writing with Reference to the Third Level EFL Students
Course
Writing
Grade
Excellent
Author
Year
2017
Pages
169
Catalog Number
V458654
ISBN (eBook)
9783668911765
ISBN (Book)
9783668911772
Language
English
Notes
The author of this text is not a native English speaker. Please excuse any grammatical errors and other inconsistencies.
Tags
investigating, discourse, competence, essay, writing, reference, third, level, students
Quote paper
Fadhel Mohsen Mohammed Mohammed (Author), 2017, Investigating the Discourse Competence in Essay Writing with Reference to the Third Level EFL Students, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/458654

Comments

  • No comments yet.
Read the ebook
Title: Investigating the Discourse Competence in Essay Writing with Reference to the Third Level EFL Students


Upload papers

Your term paper / thesis:

- Publication as eBook and book
- High royalties for the sales
- Completely free - with ISBN
- It only takes five minutes
- Every paper finds readers

Publish now - it's free