Collecting the corpus is just the first step. Once the corpus is gathered, there will be many opportunities for national and international collaborative research activities. L2 students take EAP/ESP courses everywhere around the world and analyzing the VESPA learner corpus could be an effective way of “operationalizing writing difficulties” (Bitchener and Basturkmen 2006, p. 14).
References based on the VESPA corpus:
Chapters and articles
- Ebeling, S. O. & H. Hasselgård (2015) Learners' and native speakers' use of recurrent word-combinations across disciplines. In A.K. H. Gujord, S. Nacey, S. Ragnhildstveit (eds), Learner Corpus Research: LCR2013 Conference Proceedings (Bergen Language and Linguistics Studies (BeLLS) vol. 6), 87-106.
- Granger, S. & Paquot, M. (2009). In search of a General Academic Vocabulary: A corpus-driven study. In Katsampoxaki-Hodgetts, K. (ed.) Options and Practices of L.S.P practitioners Conference Proceedings. University of Crete Publications, E-media, 94-108.
- Hasselgård, H. (2014) It-clefts in English L1 and L2 academic writing. In Kristin Davidse, Caroline Gentens, Lobke Ghesquière, Lieven Vandelanotte (eds) Corpus Interrogation and Grammatical Patterns. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 295-320.
- Larsson, T. (2019). Grammatical stance marking in student and expert production: Revisiting the informal-formal dichotomy. Register Studies, 1 (2), 243–268.
- Larsson, T., Callies, M., Hasselgard, H., Laso, N., Paquot, M., Van Vuuren, S. & I. Verdaguer. (2020). Adverb placement in EFL academic writing: Going beyond syntactic transfer. International Journal of Corpus Linguistics, 25(2): 155-184.
- Larsson, Tove & Kaatari, Henrik. (2019). Extraposition in learner and expert writing: Exploring (in)formality and the impact of register. International Journal of Learner Corpus Research, 5 (1), 33–62.
- Larsson, Tove & Kaatari, Henrik. (2020). Syntactic complexity across registers: Investigating (in)formality in second-language writing. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 45.
- Larsson, T., Paquot, M., & Biber, D. (2021). On the importance of register in learner writing: A multi-dimensional approach. In E. Seoane & D. Biber (Eds.), Corpus based approaches to register variation. Amsterdam: Benjamins.
- Larsson, T., Paquot, M. & Plonsky, L. (2020). Inter-rater reliability in Learner Corpus Research: Insights from a collaborative study on adverb placement. International Journal of Learner Corpus Research 6(2): 237-251.
- Paquot, M. (2018). Phraseological Competence: A Missing Component in University Entrance Language Tests? Insights From a Study of EFL Learners’ Use of Statistical Collocations. Language Assessment Quarterly 15:1, 29-43, DOI: 10.1080/15434303.2017.1405421
- Paquot, M. (2019). The phraseological dimension in interlanguage complexity research. Second Language Research, 35(1), 121–145. https://doi.org/10.1177/0267658317694221 (First Published March 22, 2017)
- Paquot, M., Hasselgård, H. & Ebeling, S. (2013). Writer/reader visibility in learner writing across genres. A comparison of the French and Norwegian components of the ICLE and VESPA learner corpora . In Granger, S., Gilquin, G. & Meunier, F. (eds) Learner Corpus Research. Corpora and Language Use n°1. Presses Universitaires de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve.
- Benjamisen, S. (2019). Profiling CAN and MAY: A comparison of two near-synonyms in Norwegian-English interlanguage. Unpublished MA thesis. Louvain-la-Neuve & Oslo: Université de Louvain & Oslo University. (supervisors: Magali Paquot and Signe O. Ebeling)
- D'Herbais de Thun, V. (2015). "I believe we write differently. A corpus-based cross-sectional study of French EFL learners use of first person pronouns in academic writing. Unpublished MA thesis. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Fossan, H. (2011). The writer and the reader in Norwegian advanced learners' written English: A corpus-based study of writer/reader visibility features in texts by Norwegian learners of English and native speakers of English . Unpublished MA thesis. Oslo: University of Oslo. (supervisors: Hildegunn Dirdal and Hilde Hasselgård)
- Henneaux, J. (2017). Phrasal verbs in academic writing : a corpus-based study of French-speaking and Norwegian learners of English. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Hugon, A. (2011). Learner writing in the discipline: A focus on rhetorical functions. A corpus-based study of the function of contrast in learner academic writing in linguistics. Unpublished MA thesis. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Jadoulle, P. (2017). French EFL learners' use of the passive voice in academic writing : a corpus-based study. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Jean-Philippe, Gianie (2020). Writer/Reader Visibility in learner writing : A comparison of the French and Spanish VESPA subcorpora. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Lie, J. (2013). 'The fact that the majority seems to be...': A corpus-driven investigation of lexical bundles in native and non-native academic English. MA thesis, University of Oslo. (supervisor: Hilde Hasselgård)
- Panier, A. (2017). Syntactic sophistication in French EFL writing : A usage-based perspective to syntactic complexity. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Pesenti, S. (2017). 'Women's language' or 'The language of women'? A corpus-based study of genitive alternation in native and non-native English academic writing. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Raemdonck, L. (2018). Using nouns to report : a corpus-based study of the use of reporting nouns by French-speaking EFL learners in discipline-specific texts. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisor: Magali Paquot)
- Sorli-Sidselssonn, O. A. (2020). Academic Keywords in L2 English: A corpus study on French and Norwegian L1 students’ production of academic keywords in written L2 English. Louvain-la-Neuve: Université de Louvain. (supervisors: Magali Paquot & Hilde Hasselgard)
- Zolotova, Ekaterina (2014) Who am I? and Who are we? in argumentative and academic writing. A corpus-based study of author identity in the writing of native speakers and Russian learners of English. MA thesis, University of Oslo. (supervisor: Hilde Hasselgård)
Please help us compiling a list of research papers, dissertations, etc. in which the VESPA corpus was used! Send references to Magali Paquot.
In the future, the VESPA learner corpus will make possible several different lines of empirical research, exploring topics such as:
LEARNER WRITING VS. NATIVE STUDENT WRITING
As a complement to the British Academic Written English (BAWE) corpus and the MIchigan Corpus of Upper-level Student Papers (MICUSP) corpus, the VESPA corpus will make it possible to analyze the similarities and differences between learner writing and native student writing. This type of comparison is essential to distinguish learner-specific and developmental features (cf. Gilquin et al 2007).
LEARNER WRITING ACROSS GENRES
As a complement to the International Corpus of Learner English (ICLE), the VESPA corpus will make it possible to compare two types of learner academic writing: argumentative writing and discipline-specific writing. ICLE-based studies have identified a number of learner features (e.g. overuse of first personal pronoun, pragmatic inappropriacy and overstatement) which a few scholars have ascribed to the argumentative quality of ICLE learner texts. Studies based on the ICLE corpus could be replicated on the VESPA corpus to examine whether phenomena such as stylistic inappropriacy are genre-induced or learner features.
LEARNER WRITING DEVELOPMENT
We are collecting texts produced by bachelor's and MA students as well as PhD students. We will be able to examine which similarities and differences in grammar, lexico-grammar, phraseology, discourse patterns, etc can be found in undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate learner writing. In addition, texts produced by the same students across their curricula are also collected, which will make it possible to carry out longitudinal studies.
L1 INFLUENCE (AND CONTRASTIVE RHETORIC)
Like the International Corpus of Learner English (ICLE), the VESPA corpus will contain texts produced by learners from many different mother tongue backgrounds. Comparisons of different L1 sub-corpora will make it possible to differentiate between features which are shared by several learner populations and therefore more likely to be developmental and those which are peculiar to one national group and therefore possibly L1-dependent (cf. Granger 2002).
VESPA partners are also encouraged to collect papers produced by students in their own L1. This will make it possible to compare L1 and L2 writing in the disciplines.
- Bitchener, J., & Basturkmen, H. (2006). Perceptions of the difficulties of postgraduate L2 thesis students writing the discussion section. Journal of English for Academic Purposes , 5(1), 4–18.
- Gilquin G., Granger S. & Paquot M. (2007) Learner corpora: the missing link in EAP pedagogy. In Thompson, P. (ed.) Corpus-based EAP Pedagogy . Special issue of Journal of English for Academic Purposes 6(4): 319-335.
- Granger S. (2002) A Bird's-eye View of Computer Learner Corpus Research. In Granger S., Hung J. and Petch-Tyson S. (eds) Computer Learner Corpora, Second Language Acquisition and Foreign Language Teaching. Language Learning and Language Teaching 6. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: Benjamins (245 pp.), pp. 3-33.