The Jamaican Creole: Explain theories and models that help to understand the language use you want to describe (and that you will use in your analysis).

Introduction • Tell your reader what your paper is about and outline your motivation for writing this paper. • Identify a research gap and provide justifications for the relevance of your work. Nota Bene: Make sure to clearly illustrate what your paper is about from the beginning! Your introduction should not contain very general statements, such as “Language is one of the most important tools of human communication, especially in times of globalisation.”, and your motivation is not about personal interest in the topic but should be developed on the basis of a literature review (part of the section “Theoretical background (about 3 pages)”.) • Introduce/state your research question(s) and hypotheses. • Give a brief account of your approach; more details should be given in the methodology section. • Briefly outline the structure of your paper to guide your reader through the chapters. → What do you intend to investigate and why? → How are you going to deal with the topic? → What is the structure of your term paper? Theoretical background • Give detailed background information on your topic. e.g. a study on the spread of the progressive in Late Modern English  give some information on language change in Late Modern English; give some information on the progressive aspect in English e.g. a study on apologies in Australian English and German  give some information on cross-cultural pragmatics, give some information on apologies • Define terms and concepts that are vital to discuss/answer your research question. • Explain theories and models that help to understand the language use you want to describe (and that you will use in your analysis). • Define your linguistic variable. What are you exactly looking at, which aspects does that include/exclude? • Describe previous findings (literature review). What have other researchers found out about your variable? For instance, what has been published about apologies in Australian English and/or German? Summarise the results. Methodology Remember that your methods are supposed to help answering your research question(s) and that certain methods suit particular research question(s) better than others. Therefore, justify your choice! In your methodology section, you have to give a detailed account of your: • data collection – Did you collect your data yourself or use a pre-existing corpus? Nota Bene: If you collect your data yourself, it is absolutely necessary to obtain informed consent from your participants. In case of underage participants, obtain consent from a parent or guardian. – What type of data do you use, e.g. questionnaire responses, audio recordings, TV series, etc.? – How did you collect your data?  Is the data naturally-occurring/elicited?  Where and under which circumstances have the data been collected?  How many informants were involved? What are their characteristics, e.g. age, gender, place of residence, educational and linguistic background, etc.? Is your sample homogeneous? • data analysis – According to which criteria did you categorise your data? – Did you use/adapt a pre-existing coding scheme? – Did you use any statistical tests? Also mention potential limitations of your approach. Analysis and results • Present the results of your analysis in a clear and comprehensive manner. • Use tables and figures, but do not let the numbers speak for themselves; you have to explain what they mean and how they relate to your research question(s). Remember to number your tables and figures, and label them clearly. • Employ examples from your data to illustrate your findings. Examples taking the form of sentences should start on a new line; they should be indented and they should be numbered. Ask your lecturer for further formal requirements and whether you need to provide a translation of the examples. Discussion • Discuss the results with regard to your research question(s) and outline tendencies that you found in your data. • Compare your results with findings from previous research and provide potential reasons for discrepancies. • Show awareness of the limitations of your study. Conclusion • Summarise your research question(s), approach and findings in a concise way and do not introduce any new aspects. Do not worry about repeating what you have already discussed in more detail before. Imagine someone only reads the conclusion – they should already get a good overview of what your paper is about. • Put your findings in a wider context and give an outlook on future research.

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