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Unit of study_

LNGS3609: Text and Context

Discourse analysis is concerned with analysing how people create meaning(s) in a given social context. In this unit students will learn to apply linguistic methods to the analysis of discourse. 'Discourse' includes both spoken and written language as well as images. Students will learn to apply a range of advanced linguistic methods to explore different discourse varieties and to study their organisation above the sentence level. A particular focus will be on the kinds of insights provided by different analytical techniques.


Academic unit Linguistics
Unit code LNGS3609
Unit name Text and Context
Session, year
Semester 1, 2020
Attendance mode Normal day
Location Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Credit points 6

Enrolment rules

LNGS2601 and LNGS2624 or 12 credit points at 2000 level in Linguistics
Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff and contact details

Coordinator Yaegan Doran,
Lecturer(s) Yaegan Doran ,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Assignment Essay
55% Formal exam period
Due date: 10 Jun 2020 at 23:59
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7
Assignment Appraisal analysis
Appraisal analysis
15% Week 06
Due date: 30 Mar 2020 at 23:59
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
Assignment Negotiation + Identification Analysis
Negotiation + Identification Analysis
15% Week 08
Due date: 20 Apr 2020 at 23:59
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
Assignment Ideation + Conjunction Analysis
Ideation + Conjunction Analysis
15% Week 12
Due date: 20 May 2020 at 23:59
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2

Assessment details will be uploaded to Canvas and discussed in class.

Assessment criteria

Result code

Result name

Mark range



High distinction

85 - 100

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an exceptional standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.



75 - 84

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a very high standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.



65 - 74

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a good standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.



50 - 64

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an acceptable standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.



0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.


Absent fail

0 - 49

When you haven’t completed all assessment tasks or met the attendance requirements.

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

Late Penalty is 5% per day.

Special consideration

If you experience short-term circumstances beyond your control, such as illness, injury or misadventure or if you have essential commitments which impact your preparation or performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Introduction to discourse analysis Lecture (2 hr)  
Week 02 Appraisal (attitude) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 03 Appraisal (engagement, graduation) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 04 Negotiation (speech function) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 05 Negotiation (exchange structure) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 06 Identification (participant tracking) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 07 Identification (reference chains) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 08 Ideation (lexical strings, taxonomic relations) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 09 Ideation (figures, activities, grammatical metaphor) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 10 Conjunction (external) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 11 Conjunction (internal) Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 12 Periodicity Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 13 Genre and register Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings

The textbook for this course is:

Martin, J. R. and Rose, D. (2007) Working with Discourse: Meaning beyond the clause. London: Continuum. (WWD)

This should be available at the Coop Bookshop.


The readings each week are:

1 Introduction WWD Chapter 1

2 Appraisal (attitude) WWD Chapter 2 - Appraisal

3 Appraisal (engagement & graduation) WWD Chapter 2 - Appraisal

4 Negotiation (speech function and exchange structure) WWD Chapter 7 – Negotiation

5 Negotiation (speech function and exchange structure) WWD Chapter 7 – Negotiation

6 Identification (participant identification) WWD Chapter 5 - Identification

7 Identification (reference chains) WWD Chapter 5 - Identification

8 Ideation (taxonomy and lexical relations) WWD Chapter 3 - Ideation

9 Ideation (activity, figures, grammatical metaphor) – Reading to be supplied.

10 Conjunction (external) WWD Chapter 4 – Conjunction

11 Conjunction (internal) WWD Chapter 4 - Conjunction

12 Periodicity (scaffolding discourse) WWD Chapter 6 – Periodicity

13 Genre & register (modelling social context) WWD Chapter 8 – Tackling a Text, 9 – Connections


Other optional readings for deeper analysis:

Martin (1992) English Text: System and Structure. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
A more in depth look at discourse semantics that Working With Discourse is derived from.

Martin and Rose (2008) Genre Relations: Mapping Culture. London: Equinox.
A detailed discussion of genre, for your final assignment.


Other optional readings will be suggested from time to time in the lectures.


Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University’s graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. By the end of this unit a student will be able to: - demonstrate an understanding of the fundamental principles of discourse anlaysis analysis
  • LO2. demonstrate an understanding of the dependencies between various discourse systems and their role in realising context
  • LO3. understand and deploy argumentation to motivate descriptions and choose among competing options
  • LO4. read and understand academic articles in the field of discourse analysis
  • LO5. apply advanced technical and conceptual skills to measure and analyse similarities and differences between texts from the perspective of discourse anlaysis
  • LO6. begin working independently to research and analyze texts in innovative ways; begin to able to undertake discourse analysis projects independently and in collaboration with mentors and peers
  • LO7. appreciate potential applications of discourse analysis in educational, clinical and forensic contexts

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities
This course is developed in response to feedback.


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