This course will introduce you to the use of corpora – large electronic collections of written and/or spoken text that serve as a reliable source of evidence in linguistic analysis. (‘Corpora’ is the plural of ‘corpus’.) You will learn how to design, analyse, and exploit corpora in language teaching, dictionary writing, and translation for English or any other language.
You will be given freedom and flexibility to tailor the course content to your needs and research interests as we offer a unique selection of general and specialized elective modules from which to choose. Our teaching staff will provide you with support and guidance in selecting the most suitable combination for your research topic.
Semester I will focus on developing general linguistic knowledge and research skills, which you will be able to apply to your chosen area of expertise in Semester II. You will learn about words, meanings, and linguistic creativity, broaden your knowledge of grammar, and acquire basic research and professional skills. You will also have an opportunity to learn the essentials of computer programming by attending our elective module in Python.
Semester II will introduce you to corpus linguistic methods and their application to three areas of research: language teaching, lexicography, and translation. You will start planning your dissertation and engage in one-on-one consultations with your supervisor.
You will be expected to dedicate 9 hours per week to lectures and a proportionate amount of time to self-study and tutorials with your supervisor.
- You will be taught by leading researchers in the field: our teaching staff at the Research Institute of Information and Language Processing (RIILP) are engaged in high-quality research, as evidenced by the latest RAE 2008 and REF 2014 results.
- We offer an exciting programme of invited lectures and research seminars, attended by both students and staff;
- The institute has a wide network of contacts in academia and in the industry which you will be able to benefit from.
- You will also have an opportunity to travel the world – Malaga, Naples, Valencia, Besançon, Plovdiv, and Alicante are just a few of the many possible destinations covered by our institute’s Erasmus agreements.
Who will teach you on this course?
Prof. Patrick Hanks – Professor in Lexicography, RIILP
Professor Hanks is a world-renowned researcher in the fields of lexicography, corpus linguistics, figurative language, and onomastics. His curriculum vitae includes prestigious posts in the publishing industry: he was Chief Editor of English Dictionaries at Collins Publishers and subsequently Chief Editor of Current English Dictionaries at Oxford University Press. More recently, he has held research posts and taught linguistics and lexicology at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in Britain, America, Germany, and the Czech Republic. He was lead researcher on an AHRC-funded project titled ‘Disambiguation of Verbs by Collocations’ (DVC) at RIILP, which aimed at creating the 'Pattern Dictionary of English Verbs', a large, corpus-driven lexical resource for English verbs. Prof. Hanks serves on the editorial board of the International Journal of Lexicography and the International Journal of Corpus Linguistics, and on the programme committees for conferences in computational linguistics, lexicography, and phraseology. He is an honorary life member of the European Association for Lexicography.
Modules: Lexicography: Theory and Practice; Using Corpus Data for ELT
Dr Sara Moze – Research Associate in Lexicography, Course Leader, RIILP
Dr Moze specializes in Corpus Linguistics, Mono- and Bilingual Lexicography, Frame Semantics, and Translation Studies, and has 10 years of research experience working in the development of corpus-driven methodologies, annotation schemes, tools, dictionaries, pedagogical grammars and other linguistic resources for various languages. She is one of the main researchers working on the 'Pattern Dictionary of English Verbs', which is currently being developed at RIILP under the guidance of Prof. Hanks. She has also co-authored a book titled ‘Analysing Student Language Problems: A Corpus-based Approach’, which focuses on the application of corpus linguistic methods to language teaching.
Modules: Using Corpus Data for ELT; Lexicography: Theory and Practice
Dr Michael Oakes – Reader in Computational Linguistics, RIILP
Dr Oakes was the Principal Investigator at the University of Sunderland on the EU-funded VITALAS project, working on the text retrieval aspects of a multi-media search engine. He has successfully supervised 7 PhD students to completion as the main supervisor. The majority of these theses were in the field of information retrieval. At present, he is supervising 4 other PhD students and is the course leader for our other MA programme in Language and Information Processing (MA LIP). He is currently researching the authorship of C. S. Lewis’ “The Dark Tower”, and performing a statistical analysis of the Indus script. In addition, Dr Oakes is the sole author of two textbooks, called “Statistics for Corpus Linguistics” and “Literary Detective Work on the Computer”, published by Edinburgh University Press and John Benjamins respectively. With Meng Ji of the University of Sydney, he co-edited two other books: “Quantitative Methods in Corpus-Based Translation Studies” (published by John Benjamins) and “Corpus Methodologies Explained: An Empirical Approach to Translation Studies” (published by Routledge).
Modules: Corpus Linguistics with R
Dr Constantin Orasan – Deputy Head of RGCL and Reader in Computational Linguistics, RIILP
Dr Orasan has more than 15 years of experience working in many fields of human language technologies, including text simplification, automatic summarisation, information extraction, machine translation, question answering, and corpus building. He is the Coordinator of the FP7 ITN EXPERT project (http://expert-itn.eu). He was the local coordinator of the Erasmus Mundus Masters in NLP&HLT and deputy coordinator of the FIRST project. He has supervised 6 completed PhD thesis, more than 20 masters dissertation and is currently supervising 4 PhD students.
Modules: Python Programming