Signposting Propositions: A Study of Interactive Metadiscourse Marking in the Composition of Research Articles Across Sciences

Document Type : Research Article


1 University of Mohaghegh Ardabili

2 Payam Noor University, Ardabil Branch, Iran


Writers ensure the expected (re)construction of concepts in the mind of the audience through effective signposting of the inevitably linear linguistic stream, which is a main aspect of metadiscourse called interactive metadiscourse. In this study, the use of interactive metadiscourse markers in research articles was investigated to examine any probable difference existing between different disciplines and also the two rhetorical sections of research articles. For this purpose, we examined a corpus of 120 research articles from four academic disciplines. The results obtained from the functional-contextual analysis of the corpus revealed no statistically significant difference in the use of these markers across disciplines, which suggested a parallel convention to be at work among academic writers in signposting the propositions. Of course, the sections of articles were different attributable to the difference in their cognitive genre. The findings could offer implications for the teaching and learning of academic writing.