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  • 1.
    Bardel, Camilla
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    Erickson, Gudrun
    Österberg, Rakel
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Romance Studies and Classics.
    Learning, teaching and assessment of second foreign languages in Swedish lower secondary school – dilemmas and prospects2019In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 13, no 1, p. 7-26Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper presents an overview of second foreign language (SFL) education in Sweden, especially at lower secondary level. It offers a survey of the historical development of the study of other languages than English as well as a reflection over the current state of the subject. Currently, there is a shortage of research on the circumstances and conditions of the learning, teaching and assessment of the Swedish school subject Modern languages, as well as on young people’s proficiency in other languages than English in Sweden. In order to contribute to a knowledge base for further research, the current paper reviews work considering the Swedish context concerning: a) frame factors, policy issues and organization of SFL studies b) attitudes towards plurilingualism and SFL motivation, c) teacher education and recruitment policies, and d) levels of attainment at the end of compulsory school. Throughout the paper, the European context is also taken into account. The paper ends with a discussion of the general status of the subject Modern languages in Swedish school and society, the fact that this subject is not mandatory, and the consistently high dropout rate that characterizes the current situation.

  • 2.
    Berglund, Jenny
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences Education.
    Liturgical literacy as hidden capital: Experiences from Qur’an education in Sweden2019In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 13, no 4, p. 15-25Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article focuses on a form of supplementary Islamic education that centres on Qur’an studies and examines the reported experiences of Muslim students that regularly shift between this and their mainstream secular school. Its aim is to better comprehend the dialectical interplay between this type of supplementary education and mainstream secular schooling. Within this framework, the article explores how the traditional way of reading, reciting, and memorizing the Qur’an might relate to the type of teaching and learning that occurs within mainstream public schools. It also explores the possibility of a secular bias within the Swedish school system, the contribution of Qur’an studies to mainstream schooling (and vice versa), Qur’an-based vs. mainstream notions of “reading”, especially in relation to the idea of “understanding” and “meaning”, and how competency in Qur’an recitation becomes valuable secular “capital” when translated from language of “liturgical literacy” to the language of “skills”. To balance and enhance our understanding of student experiences, this article employs a constructive understanding of Pierre Bourdieu's concepts of cultural capital and habitus as well as Andrey Rosowsky’s notion of liturgical literacy.

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  • 3.
    Caliolo, Susanna
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Teaching and Learning.
    Hedman, Christina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Teaching and Learning.
    Co-assessment among language teachers: A master–apprentice relationship2022In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 16, no 1, p. 133-153Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper reports on a case study of online co-assessment practices among teachers of minoritized languages in the so-called Mother Tongue (MT) subject in Sweden. These co-assessments, involving both qualified and unqualified teachers, have not previously been investigated, despite the strong emphasis on co-assessment practices in the Swedish school. The data was collected both for a master’s thesis project (see unpublished thesis, Caliolo, 2021) and for the sake of this paper. On the basis of interactional analyses of three co-assessments and four teacher interviews, our aim was to contribute new knowledge on co-assessment within this institutional frame regarding how the two teacher roles in a master-apprentice relationship were produced through interaction. The scripted frame included a collaborative act of matching assessment criteria to student performance, through the authorized teacher’s controlling moves (Linell, 1990, p. 161). The authorized teachers used their roles as experts to ask clarifying questions and to orient the dialogue toward the stated standards (cf. directive moves, Linell, 1990), but also to provide space for teacher reflections through an interactional balancing act. A challenge was identified in terms of better integrating teacher experience and of providing better opportunities to co-assess with teachers who teach the same language, which allows for a closer focus on aspects of teaching. The study points to a need for further critical inquiry into these assessment practices, which undergird increasing equal educational opportunities for multilingual students, and how interpretations of current standards are linked to student performance in similar language learning contexts. 

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  • 4.
    Duggan, Nora
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Swedish as a Second Language for the Deaf.
    Holmström, Ingela
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Swedish as a Second Language for the Deaf. Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, Sign Language.
    "They have no language": Exploring language ideologies in adult education for deaf migrants2022In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 16, no 2, p. 147-165Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article is based on data from an empirical research project on the multilingual situation of deaf migrants in Sweden. Deaf migrants attending folk high schools are a heterogeneous group with various language and educational backgrounds. Some of them have grown up with limited or no access to a spoken or signed language while others have grown up learning multiple languages. In those schools, the migrants learn Swedish Sign Language (STS) and Swedish as well as about Swedish society. The study uses an ethnographic approach, and data has been created through participant observations and interviews with teachers and migrants in three folk high schools in different municipalities in Sweden. The analysis reveals that language ideologies are present in these schools, such as what constitutes a language and what status different languages and other repertoires have. In addition, STS appears to be the only acceptable language for communication within the schools. Another finding is that the Eurocentric perspective on ‘language’ among researchers and teachers often collides with the migrants who have different experiences of language use. Furthermore, the study reveals that some migrants, after some time in school, begin to view their previous repertoires used for communication as inferior to STS. It also emerges that the teachers lack the knowledge necessary to understand what it means to learn a language formally for the first time as an adult. In order to develop teachers’ knowledge to ensure social justice, research on adult deaf migrants’ language acquisition within school contexts is essential.

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  • 5. Granfeldt, Jonas
    et al.
    Bardel, Camilla
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    Erickson, Gudrun
    Sayehli, Susan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Centre for Research on Bilingualism.
    Ågren, Malin
    Österberg, Rakel
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Romance Studies and Classics.
    Special issue on Learning, teaching and assessment of second foreign languages in school contexts2019In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 13, no 1, p. 1-5Article in journal (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

     The current special issue of Apples – Journal of Applied Language Studies features a subset of the papers presented at the symposium Learning, teaching and assessment of second foreign languages in school contexts held at Lund University, Sweden, in December 2016. The symposium was organised by the TAL-project (Granfeldt et al., 2016), a research project funded by the Swedish Research Council and focusing on the learning, teaching and assessment of second foreign languages (SFLs) in Swedish schools1.

  • 6. Granfeldt, Jonas
    et al.
    Erickson, Gudrun
    Bardel, Camilla
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Teaching and Learning.
    Sayehli, Susan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Centre for Research on Bilingualism.
    Ågren, Malin
    Österberg, Rakel
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Romance Studies and Classics.
    Speaking French, German and Spanish in Swedish lower secondary school –a study on attained levels of proficiency2023In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 17, no 2, p. 91-121Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study investigates levels of oral proficiency in French, German and Spanish attained by Swedish speaking students in lower secondary school. A total of 122 students performed two tasks: one production task and one interaction task. The oral performances were rated using scales from the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. The rating was done in successive steps by researchers in the project and external raters. The results show that slightly less than half of the students’ performances were rated at or above the expected proficiency level at the end of lower secondary school (A2.1). While there was no difference in rated levels between the two tasks, the performances by the students of German were significantly more often rated at or above the A2.1 level than the performances by students of French and Spanish. In the article, we discuss the results in relation to the few previous studies available on the topic, as well as some aspects of the learning conditions that might contribute to the interpretation of the results. In addition, certain structural phenomena regarding language education in Sweden are briefly considered in relation to equity at a general level. 

  • 7. Granfeldt, Jonas
    et al.
    Sayehli, Susan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Centre for Research on Bilingualism.
    Ågren, Malin
    The context of second foreign languages in Swedish secondary schools: Results of a questionnaire to school leaders2019In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 13, no 1, p. 27-48Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article reports the results of a survey focusing on the educational context of second foreign languages (SFL) to which 147 Swedish secondary school leaders responded. The study aims to provide a picture of how SFLs like German, French and Spanish are organised in a representative selection of Swedish schools across the country. The results of the survey show that there are major differences between languages when it comes to the language offer and the number of pupils and teachers in the respective languages. Moreover, there are also important differences between schools, some of which can be related to educational, socio-economic and regional aspects of the responding schools. A general conclusion of the survey is that conditions for SFLs currently vary across languages and across the country. One of the main challenges for the future seems to be to maintain a varying offer of languages in a majority of schools.

  • 8.
    Hedman, Christina
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    Ganuza, Natalia
    Uppsala universitet, Sverige.
    Introductory commentary: Lived experiences of qur’anic schooling in Scandinavia2019In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 13, no 4, p. 7-13Article in journal (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Reading the contributions to this special issue, it is striking how little research has hitherto been conducted on qur’anic schooling and Qur’an faith literacy practices in Scandinavia, despite it being well-known that the Qur’an schools constitute important religious and social meeting points for many Muslim faith members (e.g., Risenfors, Gurdal, & Sorbring, 2011). In all of the Scandinavian countries, numerous children and adolescents regularly attend qur’anic schooling from a very young age. As argued by Day and Rogaly (2014), shared Islamic faith literacy practices and participation in qur’anic schooling thus contribute to creating a sense of social belonging and coherence for many faith members. Despite this being the case, we still know very little about faith members’ lived experiences of qur’anic schooling. This lack of attention in the research seems to be a global rather than a local phenomenon. For example, Moore (2011) claims that qur’anic schooling is “[o]ne of the least-studied and most poorly understood educational institutions in today's world.” Consequently, all of the papers in this special issue make a valuable contribution in widening the research focus, and in counteracting the invisibilization of qur’anic schooling and faith literacy in the research.

  • 9. Hildén, Raili
    et al.
    Fröjdendahl, Birgitta
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    The dawn of assessment literacy – exploring the conceptions of Finnish student teachers in foreign languages2018In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 12, no 1, p. 1-24Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The paper addresses Finnish student teachers’ conceptions of assessment literacy in foreign languages. Student teachers’ assessment literacy (STAL) is a focal constituent of teacher cognition and can, according to prior research, be enhanced by principled instruction (DeLuca & Klinger, 2010; Volante & Fazio, 2007). STAL is suggested to imply knowledge, practice and ethical considerations. The nature and priorities of STAL are guided by local needs. Hence, topical issues in the Finnish language education were taken into account alongside general assessment theory. The research questions targeted firstly the emergent factorial structure of STAL, and secondly, the validity of a predetermined theory-driven model in alignment with official national priorities. The data were gathered on a web-based survey to 77 students prior to the lectures, and to 65 students after the lectures. The survey consisted of 75 statements about attitudes and practices related to various domains of assessment. Mainstream inferential statistics was used to compare the pre- and post-dataset. The componential structure of STAL attitudes remained more stable than the construct of practices across the study unit. The major dimension of both measurements was Acquired confidence in assessment of multiple aspects of language ability in the classroom. The envisaged or real practices underwent a substantial transformation towards a more learner-centered architecture highlighting flexibility and communication. Of the predetermined domains, working skills and professional self-esteem seemed to be most sensitive to a short-term pedagogical intervention. The tentative results pave the way for progressive development in raising the impact of teacher education for improved assessment literacy skills.

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  • 10.
    Hynninen, Niina
    et al.
    Helsinki University.
    Kaufhold, Kathrin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The value of academics’ research-related online writing2020In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 14, no 1, p. 47-64Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Research productivity indicators tend to ignore online and social media writing of academics, nevertheless, many academics for instance tweet and blog. It thus seems that there is additional value for writing in these genres. This study sets out to explore what roles writing in these hybrid online genres plays in relation to academics’ research activities. Drawing on in-depth research interviews with 29 academics with various L1s from three different disciplines, the study focuses on the participants’ perceptions of tweeting and blogging, and how they value writing in these genres in relation to core research-writing genres in their fields. Besides some differences in the evaluations between the disciplines, in general the academics expressed a strong orientation towards evaluative regimes related to writing in their core genres, particularly institutional merit systems and peer review systems. At the same time, the hybrid genres seemed to gain value beyond these systems in providing opportunities for self-actualisation and communicating on one’s own terms. The findings provide important insights into the ecology of genres academics make use of in the process of knowledge production.

  • 11. Jusslin, Sofia
    et al.
    Magnusson, Ulrika
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    Rejman, Katarina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    Heilä-Ylikallio, Ria
    Björklund, Siv
    Meaning-making in fifth-graders' multimodal texts: Towards a vocabulary of semiotic potentials in different modes2020In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 14, no 2, p. 47-66Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Despite a growing body of research on multimodal writing, scholars still express a need for formal frameworks for discussing multimodal literacy practices and call for research on multimodality in education that develops a vocabulary to approach multimodal texts in teaching. This study answers this call by presenting an analysis that adds to the field of multimodal writing research, and thus furthers the knowledge of different semiotic potentials of modes in student-produced texts. Drawing on a social semiotic approach to multimodality, a total of 299 texts, written by fifth-grade students from three schools in Sweden and Finland, are analyzed. The aim is to explore semiotic modes used in the student-produced written texts. The guiding research questions are: (1) What modes are used in the texts, and (2) what meanings are realized through the different modes in the texts. Results showed that six different modes were used to realize meanings in five categories: create representative meaning; visualize phenomena and assignments; foreground important areas; design the text; and decorate the paper. These categories offer a vocabulary that can describe semiotic potentials of the modes and how they realize different meanings in multimodal texts. Such a vocabulary can aid teachers in cultivating, supporting, and assessing students’ multimodal writings that contain multiple modes. From these results, we suggest that acknowledging the diversity of the modes and their meanings in student texts can help raise the awareness of how students also make meaning in modes beyond writing and image.

  • 12.
    Kaufhold, Kathrin
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Dymond, Rosie
    Translanguaging and place-making in writing for publication2022In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 16, no 3, p. 128-143Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In this piece, we consider what the concepts of translocality as place-making and translanguaging can add to an understanding of current academic and creative writing. Our quest is informed by sociolinguistic theory and literary studies. We take up Hultgren’s (2020) call for interdisciplinarity in research on multilingual writing for publication and contribute to current debates that question dominant ways of knowledge production. By means of creative conversations between the authors, a sociolinguist in Stockholm, Sweden and a scholar of literature in Bangor, North Wales, we explore how academic and creative writing practices may be enriched by drawing on a broader range of writers’ linguistic repertoires. In contrast to previous research that focused on translocality in terms of writers’ mobility and networking, we pay attention to translocality as a process of place-making in writing. Drawing on narrative methods, we present four instances of condensed and partly fictionalized dialogue informed by our own lived experience. The creative form reveals various layers of translocal and translingual writing practices. Translanguaging is intricately connected to place-making and the evocation of communities in both fictional and academic texts. While limited by “regimes of comprehensibility” (Bodin, Helgesson & Huss, 2020), it carries potential for learning and for political activism. Ultimately, our insights and our writing experiment aim to question what counts as a legitimate text and to suggest alternative ways of meaning-making in academic and creative writing practices.

  • 13. Khachaturyan, Maria
    et al.
    Kuteeva, Maria
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Vetchinnikova, Svetlana
    Norrman, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Centre for Research on Bilingualism.
    Leontjev, Dmitri
    What is a language error? A discussion2022In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 16, no 3, p. 102-127Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Why are we so afraid of making mistakes? Students in language classes, speakers of non-standard varieties, professionals working abroad – we all share the anxiety of dropping the ball. But where does this anxiety come from? Why do we perceive certain linguistic features as errors in the first place? Is there any inherent faultiness in such features, or is a language error arbitrary? And if it is arbitrary, are errors less real? In this discussion, Maria Khachaturyan, Maria Kuteeva and Svetlana Vetchinnikova zoom in on the social life of variation in language and its uneasy relationship with our normative ideas. After that, Gunnar Norrman and Dmitri Leontjev give their comments. The discussion closes with replies by the first three authors.

  • 14.
    Kuteeva, Maria
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Saarinen, Taina
    Translingual and translocal perspectives on writing2022In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 16, no 3Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This special issue has been inspired by presentations and discussions which took place during the first workshop of our  NOS-HS research network ‘The Politics and Ideologies of Multilingual Writing’ (Stockholm University, 27-28 May 2021). In this issue, we explore translingual and translocal perspectives, zooming in on various aspects of writing, from its legitimacy to its localities. Our focus is on writing for publication by authors with multilingual repertoires and/or working in multilingual settings. Unlike previous research, which focused on academic, journalistic, and creative writing as separate domains, we aim to bring together researchers working in different subfields of linguistics, literary studies, and education, giving ways to new understandings of translingual and translocal dimensions in our writing. 

  • 15.
    Nilsson, Maria
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    Foreign language anxiety: The case of young learners of English in Swedish primary classrooms2019In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 13, no 2, p. 1-21Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Although foreign language anxiety is a widely studied construct assumed to develop from negative experiences of language instruction, few researchers have focused on young learners in this regard. This multiple case study investigates levels and triggers of language anxiety in Swedish primary classrooms under rather favorable learning conditions with a supportive, non-competitive atmosphere, and without formal knowledge requirements or grades. A total of 225 learners, aged 8–12, studying English as their first foreign language completed a self-report questionnaire, a modified version of the Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale (Horwitz, Horwitz, & Cope, 1986), eliciting learners’ reactions to oral classroom participation. Foreign language anxiety was found along a continuum among learners. To investigate similarities and differences among students of differing anxiety levels, they were grouped into three categories: low, medium and high anxiety. The high anxiety group included 18.2% of learners, and for most of them, this anxiety was situation-specific and closely related to their own oral performance during English lessons. However, many classroom situations triggered language anxiety in other learners as well. It may therefore be advisable for teachers to reflect on common classroom practices that induce anxiety, rather than viewing language anxiety as a disadvantageous characteristic of individual learners. The results call for in-depth studies of classroom contexts where language anxiety develops. Moreover, the study’s contribution encompass new perspectives on research methodology with respect to young learners and in relation to foreign language anxiety.

  • 16.
    Salö, Linus
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Centre for Research on Bilingualism.
    Norrman, Gunnar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Centre for Research on Bilingualism.
    Skill, dwelling, and the education of attention: Probing the constraints of second language academic writing2022In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 16, no 3, p. 35-47Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper endeavours to take stock of academic writing not merely as an activity that precedes publishing but as an art and a craft in its own right. We also draw attention to some of the conditions that affect writing in academia today, notably second language userhood in the production of text. In order to do that, we invoke the reasoning of British social anthropologist Tim Ingold, particularly his perspective on dwelling, skill, and the education of attention. From this emerges a view of academic writing as a practice founded in skill, developed through the dweller’s practical involvement with his or her everyday tasks and influenced by different constraints. Because no one is born a skilled writer, attentive dwelling lies at the core of the writer’s education of attention as a situated mode of perceptual engagement with the environments in which he or she dwells, be it through reading, co-authorship or textual response.

  • 17.
    Toth, Jeanette
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Language Education.
    Stakeholder beliefs in English-medium instruction for young learners in Sweden2018In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 12, no 2, p. 37-54Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    While several studies have investigated English-medium instruction (EMI) or content and language integrated learning (CLIL) in Swedish upper secondary and tertiary education, few have investigated such programmes in Swedish primary schools. This paper explores perceptions among staff and students about affordances and constraints in the learning of content and languages, drawing on data from a larger longitudinal case study of an English-Swedish bilingual primary class during Grades 4-6. Data consisted of semi-structured interviews with a school leader, 12 teachers and 22 students as well as fieldnotes and photographs from classroom observations. Thematic analysis of the data revealed the belief among staff that learners acquired English naturally by being ‘forced’ to use it in English-medium subjects taught by native speakers of English. The use of Swedish among students in these subjects was generally seen as a potential scaffold when communicative difficulties arose, as students who were more proficient in English could translate and provide their classmates with explanations of difficult concepts in Swedish. However, staff and students nonetheless voiced concerns about students’ content learning as well as about limited development of subject-specific language in Swedish, which could have implications for their future Swedish-medium studies. Meanwhile, although multilingual students’ mother tongues were valued by the students themselves, participants did not acknowledge them as legitimate learning resources for use in the mainstream classroom, where only English and Swedish were allowed to be used in interaction.

  • 18. Wang, Ying
    et al.
    Soler, Josep
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Clausal and phrasal complexity in research articles published in well-established and predatory journals2023In: Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, ISSN 1457-9863, Vol. 17, no 1, p. 65-84Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Predatory publishing has attracted much scholarly attention recently, but little is known about the actual material published in predatory journals. In this paper, we address this gap focusing on syntactic complexity. Using both traditional syntactic complexity measures and more fine-grained indices of phrasal and clausal complexity, the study explores the similarities and differences between two corpora consisting of 220 research articles drawn from two comparable journals in the discipline of Political Science, one purportedly predatory and one top-ranking. The results show that the articles look similar in many respects (e.g., mean length of sentences/T-units, number of T-units per sentence). Differences are found in more fine-grained indices such as clausal complements, adverbial clauses, and noun phrases with noun premodifiers, which are associated with discipline-specific rhetorical and ideational functions. The study demonstrates the potential of linguistic analyses in contributing to our understanding of predatory publishing as a complex phenomenon. 

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