A Comparative Study of the Rhetorical Moves in Abstracts of Published Research Articles and Students’ Term Papers in the Field of Computer and Communication Systems Engineering

Lam Yik San, Helen Tan


This study seeks to compare and contrast the rhetorical moves in abstracts of students’ term papers and published articles in the field of Computer and Communications Systems Engineering. The reason is to identify to what extend the rhetorical moves used in the abstracts of students’ term papers approximate to the published articles. Using Santos’ (1996) five move pattern as the model of analysis, the data indicated that both the abstracts in the students’ term papers and the published articles did use some of the rhetorical moves. However, the pattern of use did vary among them. Furthermore, the study also revealed that abstracts with a complete five moves presented a more comprehensive overview of the content of the study when compared with abstracts with limited moves. These findings could heighten the awareness of the student writers as to how abstract writing should be structured and it could also increase their sophistication in the crafting of an effective abstract. Finally, the data could also form as an informed input for both writing instructors and program designers to incorporate the learning of the rhetorical moves in abstract writing instructions.   



Expert Writers, Novice Writers, L2 Writers, Rhetorical moves, Abstract Writing

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7575/ijalel.v.1n.7p.40


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