The Louvain EAP dictionary (LEAD)

The Louvain EAP dictionary (LEAD) is a web-based English for Academic Purposes (EAP) dictionary for non-native writers (Granger and Paquot, 2015). It contains a rich corpus-based description of c. 1,000 non-technical words and phrases that express key functions in academic discourse (e.g. contrast, exemplification or cause and effect), with particular focus on their phraseology (collocations and recurrent phrases). The lexical entries provide information derived from an analysis of a large corpus of academic texts (i.e. the academic component of the British National Corpus), as well as a range of home-made discipline-specific corpora and English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learner corpora representing a wide range of first language (L1) populations. Its main originality is its customisability: the content is automatically adapted to users’ needs in terms of discipline and mother tongue background.

Another key feature of the LEAD is that is makes full use of the capabilities afforded by the electronic medium in terms of multiplicity of access modes. The dictionary can be used as both a semasiological dictionary (from lexeme to meaning) and an onomasiological dictionary (from meaning/concept to lexeme) via a list of typical rhetorical or organisational functions in academic discourse. It is also a semi-bilingual dictionary as users who have selected a particular mother tongue background can search lexical entries via their translations into that language.

The LEAD dictionary is designed as an integrated tool where the actual dictionary part is linked up to other language resources (in particular, a corpus-handling tool, discipline-specific corpora, exercises and an automatic feedback generator).

The LEAD is freely accessible at