Problems of description, variation and usage of connectives in English

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Problems of description, variation and usage of connectives in English

 

Author: Chen, Julia Siu-wah
Title: Problems of description, variation and usage of connectives in English
Degree: M.A.
Year: 1997
Subject: English language -- Connectives
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Dept. of English
Pages: vi, 175 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b1428635
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/4575
Abstract: A predominate feature in the writing of Hong Kong students is the overuse and misuse of connectives. Research has shown how serious this problem is and has concluded that textbooks are the cause of this appalling state. It has been conjectured that teachers' lack of knowledge might also be a factor, but no concrete evidence has been found. This forms the motive of this study. Do secondary teachers of English possess adequate knowledge of connectives? A preliminary attempt was made to investigate the strategies secondary teachers use to make their students' writing more cohesive and what connectives they use in their own writing. This line of investigation was soon truncated when it was realized that a yardstick was needed against which to measure teachers' knowledge and usage of connectives. Instead, an effort which ended in frustration was made to examine how grammars and dictionaries describe some connectives. Meanwhile, a task was distributed to some secondary English language teachers to find out what connectives they would choose in order to make some given texts more cohesive. A similar task was also given to some undergraduate students and educated native speakers. Differences in the judgments of the three groups were then examined as an indication of the level of knowledge secondary English language teachers possess in the area of connectives. Various proposals are put forward for further research on the linguistics and pedagogic needs in respect of the connective component of cohesion.

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