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Welcome to the website of the project ROGER

Academic genres at the crossroads of tradition and internationalization:  Corpus-based interlanguage research on genre use in student writing at Romanian universities

ROGER is a research project whose aim is to develop a methodology for the analysis of academic writing genres at Romanian universities in a contrastive perspective: genres written in Romanian versus genres written in English. This will help us understand what and how students write at university level in both English and Romanian and contrast writing in the native tongue to writing in a foreign language. The project will also result in a searchable corpus which will be used for further research.

The research in the ROGER project would not be possible without the substantial grant awarded to the project coordinator, Dr Madalina Chitez, by the Swiss National Science Foundation, in the frame of the program PROMYS, for a period of five years (2017-2022).

  • Aim

    The aim of the project is to identify, analyse, measure and evaluate relevant rhetoric and linguistics features of the same genres written in either of the two languages (native Romanian, L2 English) in order to determine the degree of similarity or divergence from similar writings of native English speakers (L1 English).

  • Background

    The study is built on several theoretical traditions contributing to the implementation of the research framework, such as corpus linguistics, contrastive linguistics, contrastive rhetoric, writing in the disciplines and writing in English as Foreign Language. While typical learner-corpus Contrastive Interlanguage Analysis, as developed by Granger (1996), mainly compares learner output with the output of native speakers of English, our project extends this perspective by including a mother-tongue corpus, thus adding a third data set for comparison. In this scenario, the corpus of student texts written in Romanian (ROGER-RO) will be contrasted with the corpus of student texts in English L2 (ROGER-EN) and academic texts in English L1 (BAWE and/or MICUSP), resulting in an experimental corpus-based triangulation of data which we call Contrastive-Interlanguage-to-Native-Language-Analysis (CINLA, see Chitez, 2014, p. 220).

  • Corpus

    As a basis for the cross-linguistic analysis, a new corpus, called ROGER (corpus of ROmanian academic GEnRes) will be compiled. It consists of (planned five) academic genre families collected in parallel from several Romanian universities, in English and in Romanian. The corpus compilation stage will be preceded by a questionnaire-based assessment of genre use at several universities, where examples of genres are collected and data on their usage are gathered. These data will be used not only to determine which genres should be included in the corpus but also to perform the procedure of genre mapping at Romanian universities.
    After the corpus has been collected and processed, the two core research units of the project will be addressed from a Romanian-English contrastive perspective: (a) rhetorical characteristics: knowledge construction and rhetorical moves, author roles, hedging, metadiscourse, citation practices and text structures; (b) linguistic features: lexico-grammatical profile and academic phrases.

  • Outcomes

    We very much hope that the results of our project will be of interest to experts in areas such as corpus linguistics, contrastive analysis, academic writing and, particularly, Romanian applied corpus linguistics. They will include:

    - the mapping of writing genres used in Romanian higher education in both English and Romanian, in several disciplines

    - a searchable corpus of academic writing genres in English and Romanian

    - an understanding of rhetorical and linguistic features of the Romanian students’ academic writing in English and Romanian

    - a research method that bridges the gap between genre-based contrastive studies and learner-corpus approaches

  • Contact

    For any questions and suggestions for research collaboration please contact us at: roger.projects@e-uvt.ro

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