Potential Effect of Informal Learning of English Through Watching a Medical Television Series on the Development of Maritime Medical English Competence
A Corpus Approach
Keywords:informal learning of English, Maritime English, medical Maritime English, corpus approach
As a result of the widespread use of online technologies and vast opportunities for the use of English in everyday online life, the field of online informal learning of languages, in particular English, has attracted a new wave of research attention. Nevertheless, the number of corpus studies in this field remains low. More specifically, to date no research study has focused on the suitability of the language input to which online users are exposed while performing online activities with regard to the development of language skills in English as a language for specific purposes. In order to bridge this research gap, the objective of this paper is to apply the corpus approach to examine whether watching a medical television series may have an effect on the development of medical Maritime English for future deck officers. The results indicate that in terms of lexical density, lexical diversity, terminology, and word clusters, watching a medical television series may have a limited effect on the development of medical Maritime English for future deck officers. However, future research should examine whether watching television series may have an effect on the acquisition of typical speech patterns in spoken maritime communication, which are closely related to everyday spoken communication. Importantly, the results also seem to indicate that online informal learning of English cannot replace all segments of the formal learning of English for Specific Purposes, but can significantly contribute to the development of general English competence, which is a precondition for the further development of discipline-specific language competence.
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