HERMES - Journal of Language and Communication in Business 2020-07-05T02:24:19+02:00 Helle Dam Jensen & Patrick Leroyer Open Journal Systems The diverse field of professional writing: current perspectives on writing in the workplace 2020-07-05T02:23:35+02:00 Iris Schrijver Mariëlle Leijten 2019-11-15T00:00:00+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Teaching and Practising Interdiscursivity in the Professional Areas of Engineering and Health – A Qualitative Study 2020-07-05T02:24:19+02:00 Esther Breuer Penelope Allsobrook <p>Knowing to write effectively is key to communication within the different interfaces of any professional role – client-facing, colleague-facing and/or public-facing. Complaints of poor service from professionals often focus on their failure to communicate, not merely in terms of politeness and consideration, but with respect to a lack of clear explanations underlying professional decisions. In other words, the process of interpreting their specialist body of knowledge to the client appears to be a great challenge. Communication that performs a translation function between the world of the professional and that of the client is ‘interdiscursive’: it involves a fusion of genres. Interdiscursivity also arises in communication within the workplace, for example in seeking or giving authorisation or advice. In this article, we examine the challenges that interdiscursive communication pose, from the point of view of engineering and of health professionals, some of whom are also teachers in these fields at university level. Our findings are based on interviews we conducted with these different groups. We hereby aim to extend the theoretical and contextual framework drawn up by a previous survey study. Although the interview participants show a certain awareness of interdiscursive writing skills, the conclusions drawn from this awareness differ between the groups, as well as between the employed versus the self-employed professionals. While the former group writes in a way that rather disregards the target audience and does not see much sense in learning and training writing skills, the latter group was obliged to find ways of managing the demands they faced.</p> 2019-10-31T18:05:33+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Analysing revisions in online writing 2020-07-05T02:24:16+02:00 Rikke Hartmann Haugaard Helle Dam Jensen <p>New technology has given new insights into the writing process of professional text producers. Keystroke logging can give the researcher knowledge about how text producers write and revise their texts, both at the level of form and content. With a point of departure in the results of Haugaard’s (2016) study of journalistic writing, this article suggests a reassessment of the online revision taxonomy developed by Lindgren/Sullivan (2006b), with a focus on external revisions. In order to be able to interpret the effect of online revisions on the text by means of keystroke logging, it is proposed that revisions be analysed with a point of departure in the semantic content involved, rather than according to location, i.e. in the text already transcribed (<em>contextual revision</em>) or in the text currently being transcribed (<em>pre-contextual revision</em>), as suggested by Lindgren/Sullivan (2006b). It is argued that contextual and pre-contextual revisions should not be conceptualised as dichotomous entities, but as open categories on a continuum of semantically meaningful context, on the basis of which revisions can be interpreted depending on the degree of completeness of the context in which they are made.<span class="Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span></p> 2019-10-31T22:25:51+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Writing Research and Specialized Communication Studies 2020-07-05T02:24:12+02:00 Franziska Heidrich Klaus Schubert <p>Many research strands have a focal interest in writing as an object. Still, many representatives of these strands are not aware of the others’ existence, let alone their common ground. This paper shall serve to unveil some of the overlaps between two of the afore-mentioned research strands–or rather disciplines: Writing Research and Specialized Communication Studies. The authors outline some of the most prominent aspects concerning the evolution, the paradigms, the principles of modelling and main research lines of the disciplines, respectively, and compare them with each other. While Writing Research has been an acknowledged discipline for decades, this does not apply for Specialized Communication Studies: with its roots in LSP Studies and Translation Studies, from which it has evolved slowly but steadily, it has meanwhile become an own sphere of research, situated within the wider scope of Applied Linguistics. Today, one can claim that there is indeed the need for one independent discipline dealing with specialized communication in all its manifestations. On the basis of the afore-mentioned contrasting juxtaposition, the authors discuss what the common ground of Writing Research and Specialized Communication Studies is, where the disciplines differ, which approaches–if so–combine the two disciplines and how they may benefit from each other.<span class="Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span></p> 2019-10-31T22:40:37+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Empathy, Emotions and Patient-centredness: a Case Study on Communication Strategies 2020-07-05T02:24:07+02:00 Ana Muñoz-Miquel <p>One of the abilities most often associated with patient-centred communication (PCC) is empathy. But how can it be achieved? There is an extensive literature acknowledging the importance of communication skills in healthcare settings. However, few studies focus on the specific strategies that can help overcome the challenges posed by PCC, especially in dealing with, understanding and responding to emotions. This is especially evident in the field of written communication. Starting from the assumption that the way in which medical information is conveyed can significantly influence receivers’ emotional response, and thus their understanding, this paper explores oral and written communication strategies that might be useful for fostering empathy. These strategies are based on the results of two funded research projects carried out by the Gentt Group (Universitat Jaume I, Spain), in which qualitative methods (interviews, focus groups and role-play with real actors) were used to improve doctor-patient communication in intralingual and interlingual contexts, in two genres: fact sheets for patients and medical consultations. The results show that avoiding ambiguous and alarming words, providing explicit explanations, using ‘you’ or the inclusive plural when addressing the patient, framing statements in a positive way, and explaining medical terms can all help enhance empathy, both in oral and written modes. In oral genres, non-verbal communication can also play a key role in showing genuine understanding. The importance of obtaining feedback from real patients and the potential of intralingual translation and role-play for improving the communication skills of medical professionals, translators and interpreters are also discussed.<span class="Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span></p> 2019-11-01T00:00:00+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## The (Inter)cultural Missing Link in Conference Interpreting 2020-07-05T02:23:55+02:00 Ana l. Leal Lobato <p>The second half of the twentieth century brought about increased international contacts between people from different origins, which led to changes in the translation studies landscape, impacting conference interpreters as well. Although interpreting scholars acknowledge that interpreters are both linguistic and intercultural mediators, at first glance, culture and intercultural mediation appear to be neglected in the domain of conference interpreting, unlike the domains of community and sign language interpreting.</p> <p>In this paper, I conduct an analysis on how the established professional discourse and the scholarly literature have portrayed culture and intercultural mediation in conference interpreting. The analysis reveals various conceptualizations of culture and different stances regarding intercultural mediation. Amongst them, reductionist conceptualizations of culture seem to dominate; conceptualizations that have informed the conference interpreting pedagogy. However, this state of affairs contrasts sharply with the current culturally diverse interpreting landscape, what might have an impact on practice and professional identity.</p> 2019-11-03T00:00:00+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Norwegian Business Professionals´ Need for and Use of English as a Business Lingua Franca (BELF) in Multinational Corporations 2020-07-05T02:24:03+02:00 Tone Holt Nielsen <p>English is now the corporate language of many multinational corporations (MNCs) worldwide. However, when English is used as a shared language resource, a lingua franca, its use may be both fluid and local, and the characteristics of its local use should then be explored. This article therefore investigates English used as a Business Lingua Franca (BELF) in MNCs in Norway through task-based interviews with Norwegian business professionals about their need for and use of BELF. The findings indicate that business professionals need to use it frequently, and for both routine and more complex tasks, like demanding business meetings. While getting the job done was paramount to all, several associated NS-like ‘correct’ usage with ‘professionalism.’ Their BELF use was characterized by local, ‘company speak’, translingual practices and the accommodation of both non-native (NNS) and native (NS) speakers of English, and the ways in which the latter were accommodated displayed a more positive attitude to these interlocutors than has been found in similar studies. This article argues that English used as a corporate language is a complex phenomenon requiring business professionals to have a wide set of communication resources and the ability to use the language flexibly.<span class="Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span></p> 2019-11-03T00:00:00+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Critical Distinctions between Expert and Novice Translators: Task and Professional Satisfaction 2020-07-05T02:23:52+02:00 Mónica Rodríguez-Castro <p>The nature of translation projects and tasks in the language industry has undergone significant changes due to a widespread adoption of the subcontracting model and recent technological trends. Managing increasing terminological complexity, higher task specialisation, and higher levels of technical expertise have become essential elements of a translator’s professional profile. Nonetheless, the requirement of such a sophisticated professional profile has challenged novice translators in their incipient careers because of limited knowledge and training opportunities. Since many changes have occurred to the profession over a relatively short span of time, this article studies sources of translator satisfaction and dissatisfaction that may affect their perception of work as well as the language industry at large. This study reports results from an ongoing investigation into the ‘expertise effect’ measured through translator satisfaction in relation to two main categories: (a) professional satisfaction and (b) task satisfaction. A student’s <em>t</em>-test is used to compare perceptions of novice and expert translators (N=250), and the results suggest a gap in critical sources of satisfaction between the two populations. The findings could be applied to determine possible means of mitigating career turnover among translators and used by translator trainers to comprehend the needs of novice professionals.</p> 2019-11-03T17:11:51+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## The construction of semantic waves of knowledge-building: High school students´ natural science writing 2020-07-05T02:23:59+02:00 Birgitta Svensson <p>This paper investigates popular science articles written by Swedish high school students as part of a project aimed at building their knowledge of the content of their natural science curriculum by integrating it with their Swedish language studies. This work, an effort to promote content-area literacy and knowledge-building, was undertaken during their project time. By analyzing the students´ texts, the purpose of the study was to access their value as knowledge-building tools. The analysis of the texts was carried out utilizing Maton´s (2013) theoretical concepts of waves of <em>semantic density </em>and <em>semantic gravity</em>, which are seen as a prerequisite for <em>cumulative knowledge-building. </em>The investigation extends previous studies on semantic waves since it incorporates into the analyses both linguistic features and visual elements. The students were writing in pairs and a total of six texts were analyzed. The text analyses showed three different types of semantic profiles, with four of the texts including features that served as means of cumulative knowledge-building. In a concluding section, some pedagogical implications of the study are considered.<span class="Apple-converted-space">&nbsp;</span></p> 2019-11-03T00:00:00+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Coherence in hybrid texts: The case of the Patient Information Leaflet genre 2020-07-05T02:23:49+02:00 Aage Hill-Madsen <p>This article investigates the degree of coherence in a particular type of hybrid text, viz. the Patient Information Leaflet, which is a lay-oriented genre fusing original and derived textual elements. Having their source in the specialized genre named Summary of Product Characteristics, derived segments undergo various kinds and degrees of registerial simplification in the transfer to the Patient Information Leaflet. Given this complex textual genesis, the aim of the article is to investigate the nature and degree of coherence in the Patient Information Leaflet genre, and, more specifically, to investigate the degree of integration between derived and non-derived elements. Following Halliday/Hasan’s (1976) definition of the coherence concept, the article examines the genre’s contextual coherence in the form of registerial consistency and its text-internal coherence in the form of cohesiveness. For the investigation of cohesiveness, the analytical framework known as Cohesive Harmony Analysis (Hasan 1984, 1985) has been applied to a sample text from the genre, and likewise to a parallel lay-oriented, but non-hybrid text from the health column of a British quality newspaper, which serves as a control. While the investigation confirms already well-known problems with registerial consistency in the Patient Information Leaflet genre, the analytical results reflect a high degree of cohesiveness, and one that is even markedly higher than that of the non-hybrid control text. Further, the results reflect a high level of integration between derived and non-derived segments in the Patient Information Leaflet.</p> 2019-11-03T17:43:19+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Las obras y fuentes de referencia en la traducción especializada inglés-español, español-inglés: algunos ejemplos de soporte documental para la traducción jurídica y económica 2020-07-05T02:23:45+02:00 María Ángeles Orts Llopis <p>This study aims to carry out an analysis of the range of resources offered in the field of Legal and Economic Translation in English and Spanish, in order to carry out a methodical examination of documentary sources in these two translation fields. Hence, it differentiates between those named “reference works” and “reference sources”, as direct and indirect or oblique resources, respectively, for these two types of specialized translation. Through a systematic scrutiny of eight terms of special significance in the economic and legal fields (four in Spanish and four in English, in either field), the different resources classified in both groups are tested and categorized into files per term and resource, in order to assess the effectiveness of the latter according to the data obtained. Results point to a higher number of entries for the group of reference works, but also suggests that translation effectiveness in these specialized fields does not necessarily have to be achieved through direct resources, indirect ones being useful to get accuracy of meaning in the legal and economic fields.</p> 2019-11-04T00:00:00+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## A Re-Examination of the Lemma through Digital and Functional Lenses 2020-07-05T02:23:42+02:00 Heidi Agerbo <p>The lemma is one of the core terms in lexicography. It is the lexicographical item that users of paper dictionaries normally utilise to look for the dictionary article that can help them satisfy their information need, and lexicographers consider the lemma an essential and indispensable part of a lexicographical tool. However, as new technologies are continuously being developed and many dictionaries (or lexicographical data) are incorporated into other kinds of digital tools, e.g. writing software and e-readers, it is necessary to re-examine the notion of lemma because these changes have consequences for the definition of this term<em>. </em>Furthermore, research into the operative function – one of the main functions in the lexicographical function theory – has shown that the lemma should not only be associated with words, but also other types of needs than those related to linguistic signs, something which e-dictionaries more easily are able to accommodate compared to paper-based dictionaries. This contribution, therefore, re-examines the lemma and investigates its role in e-dictionaries, and it suggests a provisional definition of this core lexicographical term that is applicable in e-dictionaries and in digital tools based on lexicographical data.</p> 2019-11-04T08:34:25+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Disseminating and Hiding Information in Technical Communication Courses: The Case of Patents from the Perspectives of Digital Humanities 2020-07-05T02:23:39+02:00 Patrizia Anesa Ismael Arina Pellón <p>Despite their ostensibly aseptic nature, technical texts involve a multifaceted net of institutional, social and pragmatic functions. Patents, in particular, are characterized by a multi-layered rhetorical exercise in which information is provided, and hidden, in light of patent disclosure lawsDrawing on the Cooperative Patent Classification scheme, a corpus of patents related to environmental issues has been compiled. The objective is to investigate the main keywords emerging in the corpus and to analyse their semantic context in this patent type. More specifically, the analysis focuses on the patents’ semantic preference and semantic prosody in order to pinpoint and examine the semantic complexities emerging in this genre and to identify the strategies employed (such as the use of linguistic vagueness) in order to provide the necessary information while not disclosing precious data.</p> <p>Patents represent a complex, hybrid and cross-disciplinary genre and a finer understanding of their discursive features may contribute to spreading awareness of the importance that semantics plays within the rhetorical pattern of the text. Therefore, they may be fruitfully employed in Technical Communication courses in order to improved reading comprehension and analytical skills.</p> 2019-11-04T08:39:37+01:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement##