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Words, Pictures, and Facts in Academic Discourse

Author(s): Greg Myers

Journal: Ibérica
ISSN 1139-7241

Volume: 6;
Start page: 3;
Date: 2003;
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Keywords: Languages for Academic Practices | academic discourse | multi-modality | visual elements | images

Researchers in Languages for Academic Practices are used to dealing with verbal texts of many sorts: exams, textbooks, lab notebooks, essays, and lectures. But academic discourse is increasingly multi-modal, incorporating various visual as well as verbal texts, including photographs, diagrams, outputs of imaging devices, and even cartoons. Some of these pictures are for entertainment, but some play a key role in establishing facts, for students or for scientific researchers themselves. Most research on images in discourse analysis has taken a semiotic approach, treating the pictures as a form of language. Recently, researchers have begun to look at the practices of production, distribution, and interpretation of images, as well as looking at the texts themselves. The focus on practices has implications both for researchers on academic discourse and for teachers of academic discourse and their students.

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