Non-canonical grammar in Best Paper award winners in engineering

Rozycki, William and Johnson, Neil (2013) Non-canonical grammar in Best Paper award winners in engineering. English for Specific Purposes, 32 (3). pp. 157-169. ISSN 0889-4906

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Abstract

Non-canonical (NC) grammar from a corpus of 14 Best Paper award winners in software and hardware engineering research published since 2006 in IEEE Transactions is presented and analyzed. Two independent raters, using a standard comprehensive grammar of English as a benchmark, identified the NC usage. Most (co)-authors in the corpus report themselves to be non-native speakers of English (NNSEs), but three of the 14 papers have a self described
native speaker of English as a co-author. The majority of the NC usage falls into patterns which match those reported in spoken English communication among NNSEs. The
appearance of simplified grammar (e.g. dropping of articles, lack of concord in number marking between subject and predicate) in published research that has attained Best Paper status in engineering’s most prestigious journals may indicate that the gate-keeper role in engineering now reflects the predominance of non-native speakers in the field. Emailed and personal exchanges with editors and reviewers, and data about the international nature of the engineering industry, are presented to throw light on this phenomenon. The
paper closes with advice, based on the corpus analysis and findings, for engineering researchers concerning manuscript preparation, as well as advice on pedagogy for teachers of engineering communication.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Culture > English Language and Literature
Divisions: Faculty of Education and Society
Depositing User: Neil Johnson
Date Deposited: 06 Jul 2017 09:54
Last Modified: 06 Jul 2017 09:54
URI: http://sure.sunderland.ac.uk/id/eprint/7381

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