Below is a list (in alphabetical order) of recent exceptional dissertations supervised by members of the Linguistic Research Unit.
- Laura Aguiar de Souza Penha Marion (2018), Directionality and expertise in empirical translation studies: A case study on French-to-English translation. Supervised by Marie-Aude Lefer
This thesis reports on a case study in which translation directionality (L1 vs. L2 translation) and expertise (novice vs. expert translation) are explored in tandem from a product-oriented, corpus-based perspective. In this study, a small corpus of target texts in English produced by English- and French-speaking participants (i.e. native and non-native speakers of the target language), who are either novice or expert translators, was analyzed through the prism of eight indicators of simplification, namely mean sentence length (i.e. the average number of words per sentence in a text), lexical variety (i.e. the ratio between a text’s types and tokens), lexical density (i.e. the proportion of lexical words in a text), core vocabulary coverage (i.e. the percentage of text covered by the 100 most frequent words in the English language), mean word length (i.e. the average number of characters per word in a text), the frequency of phraseological units, and the frequency of both coordinating and subordinating conjunctions. Its aim was to find out which sets of translations are lexically and syntactically simpler and to determine whether the parameters in question can indeed serve as a basis for identifying both directionality and expertise in translation.
The results of the Wilcoxon rank-sum test point to directionality slightly affecting simplification in translated texts, withL1 translations being lexically and syntactically simpler than L2 translations, and to expertise impacting it to a larger extent, with novices being more prone to simplification than experts. They also suggest that (a) the parameters adopted in the study can gage expertise better than they can gage directionality and that (b) lexical density best parameterizes the two phenomena.
- Pablo Lourenzo Quatra (2018), New Speakers of Minority Languages. The Galician Case. Supervised by Philippe Hambye
- Chloé Vanovervelt (2018), Etude sur le statut et les fonctions du picard au début du 21e siècle. Enquête sociolinguistique au sein de la communauté athoise. Supervised by Philippe Hambye
- Laetitia Aulit (2017), Didáctica de la compentica en ELE: el uso de una plataforma en línea para desarrollar la expresión oral. Supervised by Barbara De Cock
- Mathilde Carnol (2017), Les dispositifs de la rection verbale en français parlé: analyse et distribution dans un corpus oral multi-genres. Supervised by Anne-Catherine Simon
- Emilie Duvivier (2017), Pauses pleines et allongements d'hésitation en français parlé: approche perceptive en temps réel comparée à une annotation en différé. Supervised by Anne-Catherine Simon
Related publications :
- Emilie Duvivier, Iulia Grosman, George Christodoulides et al. (UCL, 2017), Comparing Online and Offline Methodologies for Spoken Corpus Annotation. The case of Filled Pauses and Hesitation-Related Lengthening in French.
- Iulia Grosman, Lucie Rosier-Vercruyssen, Emilie Duvivier (UCL, 2017), Perception des hésitations: liens entre accord inter-annotateurs et contextes prosodiques.
- Pauline Jadoulle (2017), French EFL learners' use of the passive voice in academic writing: A corpus-based study. Supervised by Magali Paquot
- Sarah Pesenti (2017), A corpus-based study of the genitive alternation in native and non-native academic writing in English. Supervised by Magali Paquot
- Gervaise Picron (2017), Interférences entre les systèmes phonologiques du mina et du français: le français parlé par les locuteurs d'origine togolaise en Belgique francophone. Supervised by Anne-Catherine Simon
- Marie De Clerck (2016), Interpreting and Translating Strings of Nouns: An Exploratory Corpus-based Study. Supervised by Marie-Aude Lefer
The French equivalents uncovered in EPTIC were classified according to Wadensjö’s (1998) rendition typology (close, reduced, expanded, divergent and zero renditions) and compared across modalities (written translation vs. interpreting). The corpus data show that translators render the overwhelming majority of strings of nouns with close equivalents (e.g. food traceability system > système de traçabilité alimentaire), relying on recurring patterns (mainly [N+prép+N] and [N+A]). By contrast, while interpreters render strings of nouns with close equivalents in about 50% of the cases, they also frequently simplify them (e.g. Christmas day service > cérémonie), leave them uninterpreted, or render them using a divergent equivalent (e.g. partner country > pays d’origine). These results suggest that some English strings of nouns (typically, infrequent, non-lexicalized or longer sequences) represent a major stumbling block for interpreters, as also indicated by the presence of disfluencies (mainly filled pauses) around the French rendition of these strings. This exploratory study shows that interpreted data can shed new light on well-known contrasts in cross-linguistic lexicology. More generally, it calls for a rapprochement between contrastive linguistics, translation studies and interpreting studies.
- Émilie Degueldre (2016), Corpus-based Interpreting Studies: Influence of Speakers’ Delivery Mode and Native Status on Interpreters’ Renditions in EPTIC. Supervised by Marie-Aude Lefer
The aim of this MA dissertation, situated in the field of Corpus-based Interpreting Studies (CIS), was to examine recent changes in professional interpreters’ work conditions by investigating two factors that are often considered as the bane of interpreting, i.e. delivery mode (i.e. read-out speeches, as opposed to spontaneous, impromptu speeches) and speaker’s native status (i.e. speeches delivered by non-native speakers of English [cf. English as a Lingua Franca; see e.g. Albl-Mikasa, 2014], as opposed to native speakers of English).
More precisely, we wanted to check whether the bleak picture painted by conference interpreters is backed up by empirical data. The influence of the delivery mode and of the speaker’s native status was investigated on the basis of the European Parliament Translation and Interpreting Corpus (EPTIC; see Bernardini et al., 2016). In our analysis, we have decided to focus on the backbone of source speeches, i.e. single-word and multi-word connectors, stance expressions and time devices, rather than factual information. Concretely, we have examined 500+ source items in English and their French rendition, relying on an adapted version of the rendition typology devised by Wadensjö (1998) and widely used in Interpreting Studies (IS). This typology includes close renditions and divergent renditions (e.g. additions, omissions and substitutions). Corpus data show that both variables affect interpreters’ output, though to different extents. As regards delivery mode, we found that read out speeches tend to trigger interpreters’ omission of time devices and that stance expressions are typically added and connecting devices omitted when interpreting spontaneous speeches. By contrast, the influence of the native status appears to be fairly limited (especially compared to what we would have anticipated on the basis of a review of the relevant (C)IS literature). The only significant trend that emerged from our analysis is that interpreters add more stance expressions when the original speech is delivered by a native speaker of English (as opposed to a non-native speaker). Our exploratory study, which can be fine-tuned in follow-up studies, especially as regards the statistical analysis of the data, convincingly illustrates the potential of the corpus-based approach in IS, a field that, to date, still lacks empirical grounding.
- Marie Genette (2016), How reliable are online bilingual concordancers? An investigation of Linguee, TradooIT, WeBiText and ReversoContext and their reliability through a contrastive analysis of complex prepositions from French to English. Supervised by Sylviane Granger & Hilde Hasselgård (Oslo)
- Michela Iacorossi (2016), “…in my opinion seems to me normal!”. A corpus-based investigation of personal references in native and learner English student writing. Supervised by Sylviane Granger & Hilde Hasselgård (Oslo)
Italian, French and Norwegian. Subsequently, I examine how the same linguistic features are used by native students and L1 Italian students across two different text-types, i.e. general argumentative writing vs. discipline-specific academic writing. For this purpose, texts from several corpora are analyzed, namely the International Corpus of Learner English (ICLE), the Varieties of English for Specific Purposes dAtabase (VESPA), the Louvain Corpus of Native
English Essays (LOCNESS) and the British Academic Written English corpus (BAWE). The results show that learners tend to overuse, to varying extents, personal references when compared to native writers. Analyzing the clusters, this overuse appears to be due in large part to the overuse of I+verb of cognition (in particular I think) and we+modal+verb of cognition sequences. Moreover, while for native students the number of personal references decreases from argumentative to academic writing (i.e. from LOCNESS to BAWE), for L1 Italian students the trend goes in the opposite direction: the number of personal references is slightly higher in VESPA-IT than in ICLE-IT. However, most of the clusters occurring in BAWE and in VESPA-IT perform very similar functions, i.e. illustrating the research process, stating the aim/goal of the paper and guiding the reader through the text, while in LOCNESS and ICLEIT the majority of clusters express stance or opinion, and only a few have text-organizing functions. Therefore, Italian learners of English seem to be able to adapt to some extent to the genre norms of academic writing, at least for what concerns the functions performed by personal references, and these results are consistent with those obtained by Paquot et al. (2013) on French and Norwegian learners of English.
- Adeline Müller (2016), Classification automatique de dictées selon leur niveau de difficulté orthographique et de compréhension. Supervised by Thomas François et Cédrick Fairon
- Irwing Palacios Ortiz (2016), "El discurso político en el proceso de paz de Colombia" Le discours politique dans le processus de paix de la Colombie. Supervised by Barbara De Cock
- Emilie Tremont (2016), Case study: April 16th 2015 General Election Debate on BBC1. Are syntactic & rhetorical devices a factor of persuasiveness in political communication? Supervised by Sylvie De Cock
- Amélie Bulon (2015), The analysis of promotional language in the BBC media packs. Supervised by Sylvie De Cock
- Noémie Castel (2015), "Het is om u vragen als..." : verzoeken in het Nederlands van Franstalige CLIL-leerders. Supervised by Philippe Hiligsmann
- Marie Defreyne (2015), Het onthaalonderwijs voor anderstalige nieuwkomers in België: verkennend onderzoek op basis van een vergelijkende analyse van de onthaalsystemen van de Franse gemeenschap en de Vlaamse gemeenschap. Supervised by Philippe Hiligsmann
- Arielle Delcourt (2015), Comparing the use of adjectives in press releases and in business news reporting. Supervised by Sylvie De Cock
- Amélie Josse (2015), Vergelijkend onderzoek naar het gebruik van positiewerkwoorden door immersie- en niet- immersieleerlingen. Supervised by Philippe Hiligsmann
- Ester Lucaccini (2015), English as a lingua franca in Wallonia: a case study of university students' attitudes. Supervised by Sylvie De Cock
- Alexandre Mabille (2015), Vreemdetaalcompetentie en idiomaticiteit vanuit een constructionele invalshoek: de kennis en verwerving van werkwoordelijke uitdrukkingen bij nederlandstaligen en NVT-leerders. Supervised by Philippe Hiligsmann
- Camille Spinhayer (2015), Linguïstische relativiteit en positiewerkwoorden in het Nederlands: een verkennend onderzoek. Supervised by Philippe Hiligsmann
- Anaïs Tack (2015), Modèles adaptatifs pour évaluer automatiquement la connaissance lexicale d’un apprenant de FLE. Supervised by Cédrick Fairon & Thomas François
External link(s) (to the dissertation or a publication of the dissertation)
Tack, A., François, T., Ligozat, A.-L., & Fairon, C. (2016). Evaluating Lexical Simplification and Vocabulary Knowledge for Learners of French: Possibilities of Using the FLELex Resource. In Proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC’16) (pp. 230–236). Portorož, Slovenia.
Tack, A., François, T., Ligozat, A.-L., & Fairon, C. (2016). Modèles adaptatifs pour prédire automatiquement la compétence lexicale d’un apprenant de français langue étrangère. In Actes de la 23ème Conférence sur le Traitement Automatique des Langues Naturelles (TALN’16) (pp. 221–234). Paris, France.
- Amélie Sanders (2014), L’accent régional peut-il être source de discrimination à l’embauche ? Enquête expérimentale. Supervised by Philippe Hambye
- Audrey Simon (2011), Quel accent pour quelle publicité ? Analyse de l’emploi des accents régionaux de Belgique francophone dans la publicité et de leur perception par le public. Supervised by Philippe Hambye