Marketisation of University Discourse: A Corpus Comparison of Lexical Bundles in Job Advertisements Produced by UK Universities and Businesses

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Baramee Kheovichai

Abstract

Modern universities have gone through a process of transformation characterised by marketisation and commercial orientation. Studies in the education literature have been critical about this change, raising concerns over the impact of business ideology and practices on the operation and identity of universities as education institutions. Research in critical discourse analysis has approached this phenomenon through the lens of discourse. However, critical discourse studies are often based on small data sets and do not compare university discourse with business discourse to investigate one of their main claims that university discourse will become more similar to business discourse.

This paper compares 4-word lexical bundles in job advertisements produced by universities and businesses, using corpus linguistic methodology and critical discourse analysis. The results indicate that while lexical bundles in these two data sets have a different emphasis, some lexical bundles are used for self-promotion and job-selling. Further investigation into these lexical bundles shows that they are embedded in larger phraseological patterns which are employed to portray a desirable organisational image and job position, indicating a commercially oriented nature of university discourse.

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Author Biography

Baramee Kheovichai

Baramee Kheovichai is an English lecturer at the Department of English, Faculty of Arts, Silpakorn University. He has earned a PhD in English Language and Applied Linguistics from the University of Birmingham, the UK, and an MA in Language Studies from Lancaster University, the UK. His areas of specializations are critical discourse analysis, corpus linguistics, metaphor and business discourse.

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