Investigating Researcher Identity in Qualitative Research Articles in Applied Linguistics Journals Through the Lens of CDA

Document Type: Research Article


1 Department of English Language and Literature, Faculty of Literature, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Linguistics, Faculty of Literature, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran


Recently, constructing professional identity has received an increasing attention. By adopting and adapting analytical tools of critical discourse analysis (CDA), this study explored the ways through which identities of the qualitative researchers had been projected in 4 applied linguistics articles. This study intended to find out whether the authors of qualitative research articles in applied linguistics tended to prioritize particular linguistic elements in representing their identities. Detailed descriptive analyses based on 4 CDA and discourse analysis taxonomies revealed that the qualitative researchers had a particular pattern to show human and nonhuman social actors in their writings. Human social actors (teachers and learners) were preferred to nonhuman social actors (textbooks), and teachers were the focus of attention more frequently than learners. Also, human social actors were considered as individuals, rather than groups in the majority of cases. In addition, mental processes were found to be employed more than material processes in order to contribute to the subjective interpretation and greater visibility for the researchers. Although the linguistic devices which help human social actors to be seen more vividly like inclusion and activation were used more than other devices, elements like transition, self-mentions, hedges, and code glosses were also employed. Findings may be considered useful for teachers and educators and may help them become more self-conscious about identity issues embedded in research articles.  


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