Eli's research proposal

Blog » Eli's research proposal

Posted on 03 Apr 2013 11:55

A discourse community is defined by John Swales as “groups that have goals or purposes, and use communication to achieve these goals” (Swales). In this project I plan on discussing a discourse community; specifically, a hospital discourse community. Discourse communities come in effect for people studying society or a sociologist. It helps them look at society as many small groups of people who interconnect through other groups causing a big network of the whole world. It is also interesting to study who might fit into which discourse communities. Discourse communities can be defined in a couple of ways. We have studied two types of discourse communities one by John Swales and one by James Paul Gee. Gee gives a very different definition of a discourse community. Gee’s definition is one that is more something that you are born into then something that you might join into like Swales’ type of discourse community. I find that Swales’ definition is a lot more interesting and a lot more controversial (which makes it more interesting) because it makes it possible for there to be opinions when it comes to whether a person is part of a community or not. Swales’ six points makes it necessary to prove your point as to why this is considered a discourse community more than Gee’s does.
I plan on starting off with some online research of hospitals. I want to get a feel of an everyday life of a person walking into a hospital for work. I then want to start looking into the specific genres that people use within hospitals. I want to use these to compare to the day in the life and see how it fits in. I then want to get a couple of interviews of people that do or have worked in a hospital in order to get a first hand account of the community. From this I want to do more research from books and medical magazines and afterwards I will decide how to format my paper. I don’t want to decide now because the information I receive might change how I choose to format it. I am not sure what kind of problems I will encounter in my project since I am unsure how my research will turn out. I do know that I am not so sure whom I am going to interview so that could be a problem. I am also unsure of how much information I am going to get. I could get too much and have to worry about what information to use and what not to use. This could be hard because all the information could be relevant. I am also unsure as to what the benefit will be but I know but I am sure there will be something I just think that I need to actually do the work in order to see what it is.

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