Academic Year 2023/2024

  • Moduli: Anna Marchi (Modulo 1) Cinzia Bevitori (Modulo 2)
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures (Modulo 1) Traditional lectures (Modulo 2)
  • Campus: Forli
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Specialized translation (cod. 9174)

Learning outcomes

The student knows the basic features (terms, concepts, methods and techniques) of corpus-assisted discourse studies; s/he is able to understand, analyze and evaluate complex written texts and oral speeches belonging to various specialized text types and genres; s/he is able to use the competences acquired through the corpus-assisted empirical analysis of discourse, to make and evaluate translation, revision and drafting choices.

Course contents

The module introduces students to the basics of corpus linguistics and allows them to practice its methods through extensive corpus-assisted discourse analysis work. The acquisition of the competences and capacities outlined in the learning outcomes is favoured by the provision of hands-on activities in which theoretical notions and methods are applied to different registers and text types, such as blogs, political speeches, press conferences, newspaper articles, etc.

The module, which aims to increase the students' awareness of their own expressive means and to improve their discourse analytical skills, has two parts. Part A, taught by Anna Marchi,  covers the theoretical and methodological bases of corpus linguistics. Part B, taught by Cinzia Bevitori,  deepens and extends the competences acquired in part A, applying them to corpus-assisted discourse analysis of selected text types.

Lastly, academic writing competences are specifically focused upon in a 20-hour seminar ("lettorato"), devoted to them.


Baker, P. 2006. Using Corpora and Discourse Analysis, London: Continuum

McEnery, T. and A. Hardie 2012. Corpus linguistics. Method, theory and practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (selected chapters)

Partington, A., Duguid A. & Taylor. 2013. Patterns and meanings in discourse. Theory and practice in Corpus-Assisted Discourse Studies. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins. C. (eds)

Other readings will be chosen jointly by the lecturers and the students, based on the areas of application of corpus linguistics focused upon. Students will be encouraged to actively search for relevant literature, and to share it with the class.

Teaching methods

The module is structured around a) a series of lectures covering the main theoretical and methodological aspects of corpus linguistics, and b) extensive hands-on, workshop-like lessons in which students apply the knowledge gained in the lectures by building and using their own corpora and by consulting existing ones available in the public domain.

Hands-on activities are based on case-studies, examined autonomously or in small groups. Peer support and the lecturers' scaffolding create a learner-centred environment conducive to the development of relational and problem-solving skills.

Assessment methods

Success in learning is assessed through observation and interaction in class and through unassessed coursework such as oral presentations and short writing exercises, along the lines of the final exam.
At the end of Module 1, students have to submit a short report (250/300 words) describing their idea for the final research project (including RQs and corpus description). This mid-term submission will make up 20% of the final grade.
The end-of-course exam consists in the preparation of a short paper on a research project involving the use of corpus-assisted methodologies and techniques.
The paper should be between 2,000 and 3,000 words, with a list of (at least 3) references (not included in the word count). It should provide a clear outline of the aim of the paper, including clearly articulated research question(s), details about the research approach and method(s), and preliminary results.
The paper will be submitted by mail (at least 1 week before the exam) to the course teachers who will make a preliminary joint assessment to be followed by a brief interview with the candidate about the work, resulting in a final assessment grade.

Teaching tools

Both lecture-like and workshop-like sessions take place in a computer lab equipped with PCs and a data projector, so as to be able to switch back and forth between the two teaching methods.

Slides are used for lectures and subsequently made available to the students via the Virtual platform, in pdf format.

During workshop sessions, students have individual hands-on access to software for constructing and analysing corpora

As concerns the teaching methods of this course unit, all students must attend the [https://www.unibo.it/en/services-and-opportunities/health-and-assistance/health-and-safety/online-course-on-health-and-safety-in-study-and-internship-areas] [https://www.unibo.it/en/services-and-opportunities/health-and-assistance/health-and-safety/online-course-on-health-and-safety-in-study-and-internship-areas.

Office hours

See the website of Cinzia Bevitori

See the website of Anna Marchi


Quality education

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.