CorpusMOOC Week 1

The second week of CorpusMooc starts today, so here’s a brief rundown of what was covered in week one.

  • The readings and videos focused on a few themes: building the rationale and argument for corpus linguistics and introducing terms/concepts central to corpus linguistics.
  • Part of the rationale for corpus linguistics emphasized this week was situating CL as a methodology (or range of methods) that can be used in concert with other techniques and from a variety of theoretical positions.
  • I imagine that for someone totally new to CL or exploring it for (nearly) the first time some of the terms/concepts might still be a bit confusing. The readings are clear, I think; there’s just a lot that won’t be very clear for some people until they see more concrete examples in action.
  • The discussion of annotation, in particular, I think, could feel overwhelming (I do think it was done well; again, it just might feel like a lot of new stuff).
  • Antconc was introduced and the practical activities like concordancing and building a wordlist are probably quite valuable for first-time users; I mean, the activities are good for familiarizing oneself with the basic functions of Antconc.
  • The provision of the Brown and LOB corpora is a nice touch and lets the participants work from the same set of corpus materials for the first week at least.
  • The supplementary materials are very nice to have. I did not have time this past week to look through all of them, but I look forward to going back and reading/watching when I have the time.
  • Time management-wise, the material was NOT overwhelming, imo. There was a mix of video recordings, readings, and hands-on activities. I personally prefer reading to watching videos (so I often read the transcripts and only watch the parts of videos where I feel the audio-visual context would be especially important).

A good first week!


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