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Hedges and Boosters in Academic Writing

  • Modern English Education
  • Abbr : MEESO
  • 2017, 18(3), pp.71-90
  • Publisher : The Modern English Education Society
  • Research Area : Humanities > English Language and Literature > English Language Teaching
  • Published : August 31, 2017

Eunsook Sim 1

1상지대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study analyzed hedges and boosters employed in the U.S.-based research article (RA) abstracts and the Korea-based English RA abstracts of TESOL/Applied Linguistics. The corpus consisted of 564 RA abstracts: 268 abstracts from international journals (TESOL Quarterly & Applied Linguistics) and 296 abstracts from domestic journals (English Teaching & Korean Journal of Applied Linguistics). Hyland’s (2005) model was employed as the basis for the analysis. A concordance program, AntConc, was used in analyzing the data by identifying the occurrences of hedges and boosters in the RA abstracts. From the corpus-based genre study of RA abstracts, the findings showed that a higher occurrence of hedges was found in the U.S.-based English texts and more boosters were used in the Korea-based English texts. The cross-cultural analysis revealed that the present tense verb in reporting results of a study was used in the U.S.-based RA abstracts but the past tense verb was used predominantly in the Korea-based RA abstracts, suggesting that the L2 writers’ choice of the rhetorical devices may be influenced by the specific contexts of publication. The disciplinary variations in the writing of academic texts should be considered.

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