Abstract

The present study, a corpus-based quantitative analysis, investigated the use of passive voice in terms of percentage (percentage of total passive usage), constructions (the most commonly used passive forms), and dispersion (the verbs that tended to be associated with passive usage) in college STEM textbooks, more specifically in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. The corpus consisted of twenty textbooks with over 1 million running words selected from the textbooks' chapters. By identifying the main verbs and passive verbs used in the textbooks, the percentage of passive voice usage was calculated. The statistical difference of passive constructions between disciplines was examined by conducting a MANOVA test, and an instrument, the Compleat Lexical Tutor was used to generate a word list of the most commonly-used past participles in passive voice. Results showed that the overall percentage of passive voice usage is over 30%. The MANOVA test revealed a statistically significant difference of passive voice constructions across the four disciplines, i.e. Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Implications for teaching suggest that passive voice was an important grammar feature that needs to be taught tor the English as a second/foreign language students who major in the STEM fields. Additionally, the use of passive constructions should be taught differently in reading and writing based on the needs of the four STEM disciplines, due to the significant difference of passive forms usage in these fields.

Notes

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Graduation Date

2018

Semester

Spring

Advisor

Mihai, Florin

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

College

College of Education and Human Performance

Degree Program

Education; Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0007047

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0007047

Language

English

Release Date

May 2019

Length of Campus-only Access

1 year

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Campus-only Access)

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