The Survey of English Usage
Annual Report 2010

Research
Publications, conference presentations, etc.

The Annual Report for 2010 incorporates the newsletters published during the year.

1. Research

1. New research project: Creating a Web-Based Platform for English Language Teaching and Learning (AHRC)

AHRC
Camden Council
Grammar Teaching KT Project
This new AHRC Knowledge Transfer Fellowship aims to build a web-based teaching and learning platform for secondary school teachers of English, tailored to Key Stages 3-5 of the National Curriculum's. The site will offer support for the teaching of grammar through lesson modules which dynamically access the corpora based at the Survey. We welcomed Dan Clayton as a new researcher at the Survey on 1 February 2010.

The project started with Dan Clayton observing a series of lessons in a range of schools (London and further afield) and assessing of the existing research into grammar and secondary school English. The project took stock of the gap between the UK National Curriculum guidance and the pedagogical reality in the classroom. We identified a number of key areas to focus on initially - teachers' confidence in their knowledge of grammar, existing requirements for a focus on grammar at Key Stages 3-5, and the introduction of the new spoken language unit at GCSE. We then started to design resources that could be trialed in the classroom. Planning for the Grammar For Schools website was begun and we tried to look for ways to devise interactive grammar lessons and games as well as classroom activities. Two successful training days for teachers were arranged at UCL (see below), and we established a blog to support the project, along with an expanding website which will be made available to trial users in the months to come.

Sean Wallis is responsible for the technical side of the Grammar For Schools project. The website is based around a 'Drupal' dynamic system which allows us to publish and organise teaching material which is directly linked to the ICE-GB corpus. The site will contain project lessons in a slide show format and perform a large number of different interactive exercises and activities.

Further details of the project, which is being carried out with the London Borough of Camden as a partner, are available here.

1.2 Continuing research project: The changing Verb Phrase in Present-day English (AHRC)

In February we welcomed Dr Jill Bowie to the project. She replaced Dr Joanne Close who left for a new position at the University of Leeds.

During 2010 we carried out a study of subtypes of the perfect construction (present perfect, past perfect, and non-finite perfect). The main empirical findings are that the infinitival perfect and past perfect have significantly decreased in frequency over the 30-year period covered by the corpus. Possible factors behind this decline include American influence and a tendency to simplify the verb phrase. Our study also contributes to methodological discussions in the field through a comparison of several different methods for investigating diachronic change. Rather than simply comparing per million word frequencies of these grammatical forms, we argue that it is more informative to compare proportions within a set of tensed, past-marked VPs, as this controls for chance variation in the extent to which speakers refer to past time. The study also highlights the importance of considering the interaction of grammatical categories in change, in this instance the perfect in interaction with morphological tense and modality. The findings have been presented by Jill Bowie in English Department research seminars at UCL and the University of Westminster, and we have submitted a paper entitled 'Change in the English infinitival perfect construction' for publication in the Handbook on the history of English: rethinking approaches to the history of English, edited by Elizabeth Traugott and Terttu Nevalainen (OUP), and another for publication in The English verb phrase: corpus methodology and current change edited by Bas Aarts, Jo Close, Geoffrey Leech and Sean Wallis (CUP). A third paper ('Choices over time: methodological issues in current change') by Bas Aarts, Jo Close and Sean Wallis will also appear in this volume.

An article on changes in the English progressive construction ('Recent changes in the use of the progressive construction in English') was published in a volume edited by Bert Cappelle and Naoaki Wada.

We also carried out a number of studies on the English modals. The first of these ('Current change in the modal system of English: a case study of must, have to and have got to') was published in a book edited by Ursula Lenker, Judith Huber, and Robert Mailhammer.

Work in progress is focusing on modal verb phrase patterns. It documents the changing frequencies of the modal verbs over recent time, comparing the results for spoken data from DCPSE with results for written data reported in the literature. The overall picture is one of decline, but there is variation among individual modals (e.g. must, shall, and may show particularly steep declines, while will actually shows a significant increase in frequency). This study also exploits the rich grammatical annotation of DCPSE to look at the changing frequencies of various structural patterns involving the modals, in order to identify more precisely where changes are occurring. Bas Aarts presented papers on this topic at the conference English syntax: past and present at the University of Manchester, and at the International Association of University Professors in English (IAUPE) conference at the University of Malta, as well as at the University Charles-de-Gaulle/Lille III. A paper on this research is in preparation for a volume edited by Merja Kytö and Irma Taavitsainen entitled Corpus linguistics and the development of English (CUP).

Full details of the publications mentioned above, invited talks and presentations at conferences can be found in the section below.

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2. Publications, conference presentations, talks, theses and other studies using Survey material

Please let us know if you would like us to include your publications based on SEU material. We will appreciate it if you send us offprints of any such publications.

Aarts, Bas (2010) (With Joanne Close and Sean Wallis) 'Recent changes in the use of the progressive construction in English' In: Bert Cappelle and Naoaki Wada (eds.) Distinctions in English grammar, offered to Renaat Declerck. Tokyo: Kaitakusha. 148-167.

Aarts, Bas (2010) (With Joanne Close) 'Current change in the modal system of English: a case study of must, have to and have got to'. In: Ursula Lenker, Judith Huber, and Robert Mailhammer (eds), The history of English verbal and nominal constructions. Volume 1 of English historical linguistics 2008: Selected papers from the fifteenth International Conference on English Historical Linguistics (ICEHL 15), Munich 24-30 August 2008. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 165-181.

Aarts, Bas (2010) 'Morphosyntactic change in the English verb system'. Paper presented at the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany.

Aarts, Bas (2010) (With Dan Clayton) 'From ICE to VLE: using corpora to teach English grammar'. Paper presented at the Teaching English Grammar Symposium, University of Winchester, 2010.

Aarts, Bas (2010) 'Why teach grammar?' Seminar presented at the workshop The Glamour of Grammar for secondary schools teachers, UCL.

Aarts, Bas and Dan Clayton (2010) Seminar presented at The Clamour for Grammar: a one day workshop for secondary school teachers of English, UCL.

Aarts, Bas (2010) 'Profiling the English verb phrase over time'. Paper presented at the International Association of University Professors in English (IAUPE) conference. University of Malta, 2010.

Aarts, Bas (2010) 'Change in modal verb phrase patterns'. Paper presented at the conference English syntax: past and present. University of Manchester.

Aarts, Bas (2010) 'Synchronic change in English'. Research seminar at the Université Charles-de-Gaulle/Lille III, 2010.

Bowie, Jill (2010) 'Proto-discourse and the emergence of compositionality'. In: Michael A. Arbib and Derek Bickerton (eds), The emergence of protolanguage: holophrasis vs compositionality. (Benjamins Current Topics.) Amsterdam; Philadelphia: Benjamins, 19-34.

Bowie, Jill (2010) 'Recent change in spoken English: the perfect construction'. Research seminar presented in the Department of English Language and Literature, University College London and the Department of English, Linguistics and Cultural Studies, University of Westminster, London.

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'A-level English language teaching in London'. In: Kristen Denham and Anne Lobeck (eds.) Linguistics at school: language awareness in primary and secondary education. Cambridge University Press. 277-281.

Clayton, Dan (2010) (With Richard Hudson) 'Give Us a Golden Age of Grammar'. Times Educational Supplement.

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'Dialect and Dialectics'. English Drama Media, NATE. 15-20.

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'Language Discourses 1 - debates and discussions about language'. Emagazine, English and Media Centre. 21-23.

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'Language Discourses 2 - debates and discussions about language'. Emagazine, English and Media Centre. 30-32.

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'From ICE to VLE: corpus teaching in English'. Paper presented at the BAAL/CUP corpus linguistics special interest group. Birmingham University

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'Goodbye to the cat on the mat'. Paper presented at the annual conference of the National Association of Teachers of English (NATE). Hinckley Island conference centre

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'Using corpora in secondary English teaching'. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Linguistics Association of Great Britain (LAGB). University of Leeds

Clayton, Dan (2010) 'Grammar: what it is and what it ain't'. Paper presented at Aberystwyth University.

Clayton, Dan (2010) Workshops and lessons at Archbishop Tennyson School, Croydon; Maria Fidelis School, Camden; Southend High School For Girls, Southend.

Clayton, Dan (2010) (With Bas Aarts) 'From ICE to VLE: using corpora to teach English grammar'. Paper presented at the Teaching English Grammar Symposium, University of Winchester, 2010.

Clayton, Dan (2010) (With Bas Aarts) Seminar presented at The Glamour of Grammar: a one day workshop for secondary schools teachers, UCL.

Clayton, Dan (2010) (With Bas Aarts) Seminar presented at The Clamour for Grammar: a one day workshop for secondary school teachers of English, UCL.

Close, Joanne (2010) (With Bas Aarts and Sean Wallis) 'Recent changes in the use of the progressive construction in English' In: Bert Cappelle and Naoaki Wada (eds.) Distinctions in English grammar, offered to Renaat Declerck. Tokyo: Kaitakusha. 148-167.

Close, Joanne (2010) (With Bas Aarts) 'Current change in the modal system of English: a case study of must, have to and have got to'. In: Ursula Lenker, Judith Huber, and Robert Mailhammer (eds), The history of English verbal and nominal constructions. Volume 1 of English historical linguistics 2008: Selected papers from the fifteenth International Conference on English Historical Linguistics (ICEHL 15), Munich 24-30 August 2008. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 165-181.

Close, Joanne (2010) 'Recent changes in the modal system of English'. Paper presented at the Cambridge Historical Linguistics Workshop, University of Cambridge.

Close, Joanne (2010) 'The subjunctive in spoken English'. Guest lecture at the University of Manchester.

Dehé, Nicole (2010) Review of Laurel J. Brinton, The comment clause in English: Syntactic origins and pragmatic developments (Studies in English Language). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008. English Language and Linguistics 14.1. 129-135.

Dehé, Nicole and Anne Wichmann (2010) 'The multifunctionality of epistemic parentheticals in discourse: prosodic cues to the semantic-pragmatic boundary'. Functions of Language 17.1, 1-28.

Denison, David (2010) 'Category change in English with and without structural change'. In: Elizabeth Closs Traugott and Graeme Trousdale (eds.), 105-28.

Denison, David, Alan K. Scott and Kersti Börjars (2010) 'The real distribution of the English "group genitive" '. Studies in Language 34.3, 532-564.

Gries, Stefan Th. (2010) 'Behavioral profiles in corpus linguistics: from lexical relations to the humanities-social sciences debate'. Paper presented at the International Association of University Professors in English (IAUPE) conference. University of Malta, 2010.

Gries, Stefan Th. (2010) 'Useful statistics for corpus linguistics'. In Aquilino Sánchez and Moisés Almela (eds.), A mosaic of corpus linguistics: selected approaches, Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 269-291.

Gries, Stefan Th. (2010) 'Behavioral Profiles: a fine-grained and quantitative approach in corpus-based lexical semantics'. The Mental Lexicon 5(3). (Also in: Chris Westbury (ed.), Methodological and analytic frontiers in lexical research. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins.)

Gries, Stefan Th. and Anatol Stefanowitsch (2010) 'Cluster analysis and the identification of collexeme classes'. In: John Newman and Sally Rice (eds.). Empirical and experimental methods in cognitive/functional research. Stanford, CA: CSLI, 73-90.

Gries, Stefan Th. and Joybrato Mukherjee (2010) 'Lexical gravity across varieties of English: an ICE-based study of n-grams in Asian Englishes'. International Journal of Corpus Linguistics 15.4, 520-548.

Gries, Stefan Th., Beate Hampe, and Doris Schönefeld (2010) 'Converging evidence II: more on the association of verbs and constructions'. In: John Newman & Sally Rice (eds.), Empirical and experimental methods in cognitive/functional research. Stanford, CA: CSLI, 59-72.

Gries, Stefan Th. and Dagmar S. Divjak (2010) 'Quantitative approaches in usage-based cognitive semantics: myths, erroneous assumptions, and a proposal'. In: Dylan Glynn and Kerstin Fischer (eds.), Quantitative methods in cognitive semantics: corpus-driven approaches. Berlin and New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 333-354.

Gries, Stefan Th. and Naoki Otani (2010) 'Behavioral profiles: a corpus-based perspective on synonymy and antonymy'. ICAME Journal 34, 121-150.

Hasselgård, Hilde (2010) Adjunct adverbials in English. Studies in English Language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Kaltenböck, Gunther (2010) 'Prosody and function of English comment clauses'. Folia Linguistica. 42, 1-2, 83-134.

Kaltenböck, Gunther (2010) 'Is that a filler? On the discourse function of the that-complementizer in spoken English'. Paper prsented in the English Department, UCL.

Kreyer, Rolf (2010) Introduction to English syntax. Textbooks in English Language and Linguistics (TELL), volume 3. Frankfurt: Peter Lang.

Mair, Christian (2010) 'Corpus-based studies of syntactic change in spoken English: can we get back in time beyond DCPSE?' Paper presented at the conference English syntax: past and present. University of Manchester.

Meyer, Charles F. (2010) 'Corpus-based and corpus-driven approaches to linguistic analysis: one and the same?' Paper presented at the International Association of University Professors in English (IAUPE) conference. University of Malta, 2010.

Traugott, Elizabeth Closs and Graeme Trousdale (2010) (eds.), Gradience, gradualness and grammaticalization. Typological Studies in Language 90, Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Wallis, Sean (2010) (With Bas Aarts and Jo Close) 'Recent changes in the use of the progressive construction in English' In: Bert Cappelle and Naoaki Wada (eds.) Distinctions in English grammar, offered to Renaat Declerck. Tokyo: Kaitakusha. 148-167.

Wallis, Sean (2010) 'Competition between choices over time'. London: Survey of English Usage. » ePublished

Wallis, Sean (2010) 'z-squared: The origin and use of χ²'. London: Survey of English Usage. » ePublished

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Bas Aarts
Director

February 2011

This page last modified 21 July, 2014 by Survey Web Administrator.