A Conversation Analysis of Ellipsis and Substitution in Global Business English Textbooks

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

Allameh Tabataba’i University, Iran

Abstract

Despite the body of research on textbook evaluation from the discourse analysis perspective, cohesive devices have rarely been analyzed in English for Specific Purposes (ESP) textbooks. The acquisition and use of cohesive devices is inherent to naturalistic communication, including business interactions. Hence, L2 learners of business English should be exposed to these devices through cohesion-rich textbooks. This study examined the realization of ellipsis and substitution as two cohesive devices in 11 volumes of four global business English textbooks: Business Result (5 levels), Business Opportunities (1 level), Business Venture (2 levels), and Powerbase (3 levels). The corpus included 626 conversations with a total of 72,889 words. Corpus analysis of ellipsis and substitution frequency per 1,000 words showed that (a) frequency of ellipsis and substitution in conversational corpus was high, (b) ellipsis and substitution were not equally distributed across different levels, and (c) the textbook series constituting larger corpora did not necessarily represent more realization of ellipsis and substitution. Due to the importance of ellipsis and substitution, L2 learners of English for business communication need to be exposed to them through textbooks. 

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