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ERIC Number: ED232427
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1983
Pages: 31
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Compound Nominal Phrases in Scientific-Technical Literature: Proportion and Rationale.
Salager, Francoise
The frequency of occurrence of compound nominal phrases (CNP) in medical English literature was compared to the frequency of occurrence in general English. Ten medical English and 10 general English sample texts of 2,000 words each were selected to record and analyze the CNPs. CNPs were defined as those items made up of at least two individual lexical constituents separated by a space or a dash (e.g., vein catheter, maintenance infusion). The following data were recorded: (1) the number of CNPs consisting of 2, 3, 4, 5 and more individual lexical items; (2) the total number of CNPs; (3) the CNP average length; and (4) the proportion of CNPs. Findings include the following: the CNP average length was similar in medical English and general English; the frequency of occurrence of CNPs was significantly higher in medical English than in general English; the relative distributions of CNPs were quite different in the two types of prose; and the more specialized the text, the longer the CNPs. Because of difficulties experienced in reading material and technical English by foreign scientists, examples are included on the following: noun modification in English and Russian compounds; linking vowels in Russian word-compounds and their English equivalents; and compounds in English, Spanish, French, Russian, and German. Appended materials include a list of sample texts for medical English, general English, and technical English; a general bibliography; and examples of CNPs. (SW)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A