Unit 1 lesson 5 Chunks


These qre groups of words thqt repeqtedly come togetehr

# includes idiom to kicm the bucket

corpora has helped with this

#CHUNKS Q more recent focus in linguistics

top twenty most frequent chunks in spolen English sometiles called clusters or lexicl bundles or formulaic phrases

you know

I mean

you think

# sort of

do you

to be

# to the

# at the

you can

these are from a give million word corpus

you know occurs 28 000 times. massively frequent

I mean and I think are over 10 000 times

top wenty clusters spoken

v different,

in the

to be

for the

from the

if the she was

had been

it was m he wasm , she was

these are chiefly expressions consisting of a preposition and a definite article

unlike prevous list

these are more dimianted by a this person

spoken list is about me and you, in written list it is abot a htir person, reporting the world

in spoken language it is more interactive. first and second person.

look at four word clusters these are chinks of four words, spoken

you know what I  I dont know what#

at the end of

doy uo know what

I donnt know# a lot pf people

I don  knwo whether#

what do you thinj

tou know what I mean#

you know qhat I mean, that sort of thing

= it is dominated by you and I, v interactive

four word chunsk written

at the end of the

the first time

the same time

at the top if

one of the most

the side of

in front of the

I dont want to

ont eh ther on the other hand

= similar contrast between zpoken and writren langauge

spokene chunsk v interqtcive very back and forth


in this slide we look at the cmparison of requenecy that are called in academic writing and single words

thus, initial awqy,

academic chuns

on the other habd, to what extent# on 300 000 word academic corupsut rh frequency are well mateched

in terms of = academic

on the other hand it more freuqtent that intual

chnks qre aas important as sinfle words

look at example of a native spaker conversation

this si smeone talijg a out orofession, in uk national health service

two speakers

A is main speaker# I mean you know it is a criticisms of what theya re doing and you have got to be careful f how tou say it but on the other had you have got to un that you do understand what you are saying

oh yeah definitely

notice the chunks,

you know,

look at abother example of native speaker, remisncing about childhood

where he lived a s child what they di in the gaden.

“I suppose I don know when my sisre and I ere chidlrne we had a little patch tucked away at the bacj of somerhew we used to gor tmaotes and verg and things”

you know , sort ofm the odd, and things,

is this a lqsy person spekqaing?

prince Charles wrote aboyt his memories of gardening in buckinghal palace#


”      I suppose you could say that my inetesr goes back to when I wa sa child. I remmebr the enromosu pleasure I had a t growing vergatbale sin the gaden in the countyside ”

I suppose you could ay = is informal

there isa  differnet bertwen the spoken language and in formal texts

make a list f all the chunks that we find in spoken coripus make them coherent and organised  as a dexti of the lnaguage

many chunks are more frequent hat single ords

within common chunks there are two types

sentence pharsse and integetated items

sentence frames are freame sping wchi to hanga  sentence#

. the fact that the, is a frame

if yoou lok at the money the government spends nowdays on hospital

the if you look at it s a fram . it is very frequent#

integrated items = on the other hand

these have acomplete gramma rin thesmelves

at the same time = itegeatted ite;s

other types of chunks, special types of English,

spoken business englusg

I dont know, a lot of , at the moment, I don’t think a bit ofm be able to,

spoken academic conetxts

this is them you have to, int erms of,m sort of, ther eis a a , a lot of

highltigh we need to in business English

in terms of is n bth lists

compare business English and sacamiec English

in terms of  in business na din academic and common enlish, most common in academic, 300 per million words, in buisnes snelgish it is at 240 per million words in cnversstion it is 20 per million

q business meeting

data . “chunk we need to”, this is from business in UK

first speaker says” do you know what I mean it is a case of getting n front f people wheny uo nreed a at epdcyed

ti is euat tjat os where it is all about yeah obisouly newe need to eb wheee tit is  we need ot be china or ore or ehwver it is we need to be there that’s roght”

senrio management us we need to when theya re actually iving instrucitons

anther chunk in business . going forward

this is abouyt thing to happen,

six lines of concordance lines from busines engrlgih corpus,, from meeting and negtations

going forward could not see our forecast

could not actuall see going forward

that is good going forwar

d hoping you will eb beack going forward

to make sure that you forecast gign dorewa is correct

ti wont generta as much revue going forward

gign forwad has a prcmtic specialistion in business English it is about making decusons about the future, used in bsuienss contex not used much n other situsitons

look at this epxresison goijng forwar din colloqyal concersation it has a literal ;eaning

it wa reversing but it was not it gowas going forwa dinto a house instead

oon the couet was not really going forward of anything = lack of prrgess

that you are playing well and going forward

much more than that and ovniousl going forward

only foru example of going forward in five million words of colloqyal speech

chinks are v frequent and they show how lanaguegd becomes patteredn

how t become instuaitonalised in busines sof acaemic

coming up with vocabl listes

they should be part of ists , chinks should

it is clear tye awareness sof chinks and to observe them and to leanr tem contribeus greatly to one fleuncy

speeds up reasing, processing the chunks, yu need these to crate the sen of flow so you do not sund lieka robot who bring out each seprate word  each time

in orfinary conveatin about hald of what we say is part of chunks

provlelsn with ordinary chinks in converaiton theya re too obiosu to notice we are nto ware that we use the,m

seems sloppy and laszy

all elve sod ecuation ad background use them

we notice rare item they are pscyholgogial  salient such as bite the dust theya re low fruqndy# everuday chins are ver frequent but unnoticevake thteofr they do not come up in lanagueg etahcing materials

holsiti ppraoch in language etahcing helps a lot

grammar and intenrla structe is froaner as is word order so we do not anayluse them

we parcsek thema s while intonaution units n oen breath without asuing if you stp half way through you ruin ts itegate dnature a chunk sis epcialsied,








About Calers

Born Belfast 1971. I read history at Edinburgh. I did a Master's at UCL. I have semi-libertarian right wing opinions. I am married with a daughter and a son. I am allergic to cats. I am the falling hope of the not so stern and somewhat bending Tories. I am a legal beagle rather than and eagle. Big up the Commonwealth of Nations.

2 responses »

  1. All good Calers Commonwealth is OK but don’t forget this was a form of newspeak for British Empire which all of sudden disappeared in late 40 early 50.

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