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Exploring the Use of AWL in Nursing Research Articles

Abstracts


The purpose of this corpus-based lexical study is to identify the word frequency and text coverage of the 570 word families in Coxhead's Academic Word List in nursing research articles. A 608,918-word corpus called the Nursing Corpus was created for the study. The corpus contains 126 English nursing research articles from international nursing journals. The results show that the AWL covers 10.49% of the corpus, which implies the AWL word forms account for a high percentage of nursing vocabulary. However, the findings indicate that AWL coverage varies across different subject areas within the nursing field by as much as 8.92% to 13.55%. Moreover, the study identifies only 385 (67.54%) AWL word forms which are frequently used in the nursing corpus. The results also show that some academic words are used with different meanings and collocation patterns from those used in other disciplines. Thus, it is suggested that it is necessary to develop a field-specific academic word list that better reflects the nursing domain.

References


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