Seyed Foad Ebrahimi, Reza Moghaddam


During the last two decades, numerous studies have focused on linguistic features of academic writing. One of these features, which appears frequently in academic writing and which writers need to improve their use of, is the it-extraposition construction. The existing literature on subject it-extraposition has focused on syntactic analysis (types and patterns) of this construction and little attention has been paid to semantic analysis (meanings); thus, this study aims to explore the types, patterns and meanings of subject it-extraposition used in Applied Linguistics research articles. The study was run on a corpus of 57 Applied Linguistics research articles, wherein the common extraposed subject clauses were the that-clause followed by the infinitive to-clause. It was also evident that minimal attention was devoted to the use of the wh-clause and the -ing participle clause. Concerning patterns of it-extraposition subject clause, subject + predicate and subject + predicate + complement were the most commonly utilised in Applied Linguistics research articles. The findings showed that Applied Linguistics writers were more concerned with expressing and evaluating their opinions and claims semantically. This study could help novice writers, especially novice non-native writers, to increase their awareness regarding how such construction is used syntactically and semantically by expert writers in writing research articles.


subject it-extraposition; extraposed clause; research article; applied linguistics

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