Thursday, September 11, 2014

Join me?

I've just signed up for a MOOC!  That's Massive Open Online Course, in case you didn't know.  It's free!  I've been waiting for it to come around since reading about Carol Goodey's experience earlier this year.

The course is Corpus Linguistics: Method, Analysis, Interpretation and the blurb says that it's a "practical introduction to the methodology of corpus linguistics for researchers in social sciences and humanities".  OK, I'm not a researcher in social sciences and humanities!  But I do use a corpus almost daily (specifically, the Corpus of Contemporary American English aka COCA).  I also use and recommend corpus-based dictionaries to my intermediate and higher learners.  However, I would like to expand my abilities in this area.  I'm hoping this course will give me the motivation to focus on the topic more seriously for a while.  In addition to whatever comes with the course itself, I've had an ebook in my queue for some time now and have not had the chance to give it the attention it deserves: From Corpus to Classroom: Language Use and Language Teaching by O'Keefe, McCarthy and Carter (the link is to a PDF with the table of contents and the preface of the book.)

If the idea of using a corpus in English class is new to you, you might want to check some other resources first.  Here are a couple of good ones!

First, Scott Thornbury gives a wonderful short overview of how to use COCA at his extremely informative (if now no longer active) blog.  By the way, the comments on this blog are almost always as rich as the posts, be sure to read them!

Second, Amy Tate and Emilia Seravo share very useful step-by-step instructions for using several popular corpus-based tools in a webinar called Corpus Confidence: quick and easy steps to turn corpus-based language data into language learning.  (Note that the nitty gritty "how to" stuff begins at about the 15 minute mark.)

If you're already psyched about corpora and, like me, want to know more ... maybe you'll join the MOOC too?  See you there!


  1. hi kathy

    you may like to check out some #corpusmooc info from course in jan that carol was on over the the G+ CL community

    also my quick report of Amy Tate and Emilia Seravo webinar may be of interest -

    hope to see u over at G+ when you start the #corpusmooc :)


  2. Excellent and thanks, see you there!