Corpus-based Headword Selection Procedures for LSP Word Lists and LSP Dictionaries
AbstractIn compiling both Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) word lists for foreign language learners and LSP dictionaries, the headword-selection process is of paramount importance. LSP word lists and LSP dictionaries will function effectively if they contain appropriate terms and register items, i.e. the lexical items that end users need. In this paper, we first present corpus-based LSP word lists, with special emphasis on how they were compiled. In the process, the make-up and size of the specialised corpus are important, as is the choice of the headword selection methods used. Among the possible criteria are word frequency, keyness, specialised occurrence, range, and dispersion, as well as some non-corpus linguistic methods that are more rarely applied. A greater variety of methods is used for compiling headword lists for LSP dictionaries, and of the corpus linguistic methods, frequency is typically solely applied. The article compares headword selection procedures for LSP word lists and LSP dictionaries before discussing how they can mutually inform one another. Keywords: language for specific purposes, LSP word list, LSP dictionary, corpus linguistics, headword list, terms, headword selection
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