), progress;} Black Moustache 2013 S1-09 English Language Blog: Reflection on Discourse Markers

Monday, 14 January 2013

Reflection on Discourse Markers

Reflection on Discourse Features

   We learnt discourse features such as Ellipsis, Back-channel, Binomials and trinomials, discourse markers, hedging, fronting, tags and vague language. These are the types of communication in life. We use it everyday without even noticing. That lesson about discourse features, made the awareness rise and it made it clear what I was using and how to use them properly, at the right time. 

    As we all know, most of these discourse features are used by the speaker and only some by the listener (back-channel) Discourse features can be looked deeper. The more accurate and precise definition of discourse markers is a rapidly expanding body of research deals with a functionally related class of connective expressions commony referred to as discourse markers. The items typically treated in this research include non-truth-conditional uses of forms such as English well, so, and now.

 While it is widely agreed that such expressions play a variety of important roles in utterance interpretation, there is disagreement in regard to such fundamental issues as how the discourse marker class should be delimited, whether the items in question comprise a unified grammatical category, what type of meaning they express, and the sense in which such expressions may be said to relate elements of discourse. 

  In that lesson, the above questions were what I thought and I wanted to find out whether they were true or not as I wanted to get my fundamentals right from the start. As the teacher went through the lesson, she gave examples of the discourse features and I began to understand what was discourse features and how to use them in my daily life. The strangest thing I realised in the middle of the lesson was that I actually knew all these stuff. The only exception was that I did not know what it was called! 

    After the lesson, I learnt more about the discourse markers and expanded my knowledge. With this knowledge,  it helped me in conversations when I am rushing to go somewhere and have to shorten my sentence, I can use the ellipsis and when someone is talking, I can use the back-channel to signify that I am paying attention. 

    Discourse features can also help to indicate time order, to repeat, to indicate sequence, to provide an example, to indicate how something happened at the time and to conclude or summarise etc. To indicate time order meaning in the past, before, earlier, previously, formerly, yesterday, recently, not long ago, at present, presently, currently, now, by now, until, today, immediately, simultaneously, at the same time, during, all the while, in the future, tomorrow, henceforth, after, after a short time, after a while, soon, later, later on, following

To indicate how or when something occurs in time
Suddenly, all at once, instantly, immediately, quickly, directly, soon, as soon as, just then, when, sometimes, some of the time, in the meantime, occasionally, rarely, seldom, infrequently, temporarily, periodically, gradually, eventually, little by little, slowly, while, meanwhile, always, all of the time, without exception, at the same time, repeatedly, often, frequently, generally, usually, as long as, never, not at all


I use discourse features almost everyday in my life. Without it, I do not think that people can converse as well as now. This reflection is by Johanna Lim Ziyun. Thank you for reading. 

















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