Boosting English Vocabulary Knowledge through Corpus-Aided Word Formation Practice


  • Ana González-Martínez Universidad de Cantabria
  • Evelyn Gandón-Chapela Universidad de Cantabria

Palabras clave:

corpora, EFL teaching, corpus work, word formation, vocabulary teaching and learning


Using a language fluently involves knowing plenty of words and much information about them (Willis, 2003). Native corpora provide an opportunity to access millions of words and their characteristics in a variety of formats through real patterns of vocabulary use (Elgort, 2018). However, there is still a gap between theory and the actual implementation of corpora in the classroom (Römer, 2006). This paper extends previous works focused on learning through corpora in different educational levels, such as the activities suggested by Roca Varela (2012), since other examples of coursework including direct native corpora use in an English learning context are scarce outside the university level (for example, see Matos, 2013). In this paper we propose a sequence of activities to promote morphological awareness by taking a closer look at the diverse processes of word formation of the English language through the COCA (Davies, 2008-) and BNC (Davies, 2004) corpora within the Spanish Secondary Education context.

Biografía del autor/a

Ana González-Martínez, Universidad de Cantabria

Ana González-Martínez holds an MA in Second Language Teaching and Learning from the University of Cantabria (2020). In 2020 she enrolled in the PhD in Philology (University of Cantabria), with a dissertation, supervised by Profs. Dr. Francisco Gallardo-del-Puerto and Dr. Evelyn Gandón-Chapela, on the acquisition of productive skills in CLIL and Non-CLIL learning contexts. In April 2021 she joined the Department of English at the University of Cantabria, where she was the recipient of the four-year pre-doctoral research grant “Concepción Arenal”. At present, she holds a position as researcher at the Department of Philology of the University of Cantabria.

Ana’s research focuses on the study of the teaching of English as a Foreign Language, bilingual education and corpus linguistics.

Evelyn Gandón-Chapela, Universidad de Cantabria

Evelyn Gandón-Chapela holds an MA in English Language and Literature from the University of Vigo (2010) with a specialization in English Linguistics. She holds a position as Assistant Lecturer ('Ayudante doctor') at the Department of Philology of the University of Cantabria. Evelyn's research focuses on the study of grammatical change in the recent history of the English language, second language acquisition and CLIL. In addition, she has experience in the compilation of electronic corpora, as she collaborated in the compilation of The APU Writing and Reading Corpus 1979-1988 and The Primary Education Learners' English Corpus. Evelyn’s research monograph On Invisible Language in Modern English: A Corpus-based Approach to Ellipsis (London, Oxford, New York, New Delhi & Sydney: Bloomsbury Academic, 2020) received the Leocadio Martín Mingorance Book Award for Theoretical and Applied English Linguistics at the General Assembly of AEDEAN (November 2020).






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