APG5704 - Discourse analysis - 2018

12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit


Chief examiner(s)

Dr Louisa Willoughby


Dr Louisa Willoughby

Unit guides



  • First semester 2018 (Online)


Every day, we engage with a wide range of different text types and speaking situations, from casual conversations with friends to news reports, medical appointments to advertising. In this unit, we look in detail at the typical features of these and other text types and explore the ways in which language can be used to manipulate, persuade or empower the hearer/ reader. The unit introduces students to a variety of approaches to doing discourse analysis, including Conversation Analysis, Critical Discourse Analysis and Corpus Linguistics. Students apply these methods to a range of texts and reflect on the appropriateness of each for answering different types of research questions.


Upon successful completion of the unit, students should be able to:

  1. identify and apply key terms and concepts used in discourse analysis;
  2. explain the linguistic features that define different types of texts;
  3. discuss strategies speakers/ writers use to build coherence and cohesion in both spoken and written text;
  4. evaluate the appropriateness of different discourse analysis methods and techniques for answering specific research questions;
  5. analyse how the language used in a text serves to persuade the reader and reflects a particular ideology;
  6. apply insights from this unit to their own professional context.


Within semester assessment: 100%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 288 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study