Hesamoddin Shahriari, Farzaneh Shadloo


Given the importance of interaction in academic discourse, researchers have investigated the use of stance and engagement markers in written academic texts. However, few of these studies have analyzed engagement features in a genre such as the argumentative essay. Employing Hyland’s (2001) engagement framework, this paper examined the use of five engagement markers in a corpus of argumentative essays written by EFL learners across three levels of essay quality. All features of engagement were manually coded and normalized and a one-way ANOVA was subsequently run for analyzing the frequency counts. The findings showed a disassociation between the presence of engagement markers and the overall quality of EFL learners’ essays. The current study offers insight into the interactional nature of argumentative essays. We conclude with a discussion of some of the implications so that educators may provide EFL learners with more adequate support in order to write in a more persuasive way.


engagement markers; corpus study; EFL learners; argumentative essay; interaction

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