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Remember that your reader cannot read your mind: Problem/solution-oriented metadiscourse in teacher feedback on student writing
Dalarna University, School of Humanities and Media Studies, English.
2017 (English)In: English for specific purposes (New York, N.Y.), ISSN 0889-4906, E-ISSN 1873-1937, Vol. 45, 54-68 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Feedback on student writing is a common type of discourse to which university teachers dedicate much time. A pilot corpus of feedback—40,000 words representing five teachers’ comments on 375 student texts—was investigated for metadiscourse, defined as reflexive expressions referring to the evolving discourse, the writer-speaker, or the audience. The overarching question concerned how visible the writer, reader and current text were. To help determine how the feedback data may be unique, comparisons were made to previous studies investigating metadiscourse in other types of academic discourse, both written (university student proficient L1 writing and university student L2 writing) and spoken (university lectures). The feedback data had considerably higher proportions of metadiscourse and the overall frequency of metadiscourse was exceptionally high. The student reader (‘you’) was considerably more visible than the teacher writer giving feedback (‘I’). The material involved large quantities of references to the text, e.g. ‘here’ used to indicate trouble spots. Previously studied data have resulted in a view of metadiscourse as prototypically discourse-organising, but the metadiscourse in feedback is instead problem/solution-oriented, serving the metalinguistic function and aiming to solve communication problems. The findings have led to a revision of the model of metadiscourse in which the roles of the writer, audience and text are multidimensional rather than one-dimensional. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 45, 54-68 p.
Keyword [en]
Feedback, Metadiscourse, Reflexivity, Text visibility, Writer/reader roles, Writer/reader visibility
National Category
Languages and Literature
Research subject
Intercultural Studies, Klipparens visuella intention och tittarens visuella perception; Education and Learning
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-23328DOI: 10.1016/j.esp.2016.09.002ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84991780748OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-23328DiVA: diva2:1044603
Available from: 2016-11-04 Created: 2016-11-04 Last updated: 2016-11-18Bibliographically approved

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Ädel, Annelie
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