A Linguistic Analysis of Technical and Non-Technical Language in TED talks on Science and Technology

Authors

  • Atifa Nisa University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan.
  • Zamna Sarfraz University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan
  • Urooj Fatima Alvi University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan

Keywords:

TED Talks, Corpus Based-Linguistic analysis, Technical and Non-Technical Language, Scientific and Technological Communication

Abstract

This research paper aims to investigate linguistic features in science and technology-based TED talks. The study combined quantitative and qualitative methods to explore the characteristics of technical and non-technical language use in TED talks. First of all, the researchers identify the distinctions of linguistic features described by Biber's Multidimensional Analysis (MDA) framework, using Involved vs. Informational, Explicit vs. Situation-Dependent, and Overt Expression of Persuasion dimensions. By retaining this framework, this study analyzed the inherent variability and peculiarities of TED talks, revealing their preference for narrative, entertaining, and informative broadcasts. Then, to explain the most important technical and non-technical vocabulary highlighted in the TED talk, identified by AntConc software, recognized words were tagged using Parts of Speech (POS) software and then processed using Longman English Grammar. In addition, the frequency of linguistic features exhibited by speakers when explaining complex technical principles to lay audiences is discussed, such as nouns, verbs, adverbs, and adjectives. The findings show that both technical and non-technical vocabulary are often used in TED lectures and that presenters use a variety of language tactics to express complicated technical concepts to a wide audience. The results show that TED speeches are becoming a distinct language variety. This study aids in the development of public speaking skills and assesses the efficacy of various communication approaches by providing insights into the format and usage of TED speeches. Future studies might examine whether or not other public speeches have similar linguistic characteristics or whether they are specific to TED presentations.

Author Biographies

Atifa Nisa , University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan.

M.Phil. Scholar, University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan

Zamna Sarfraz, University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan

M.Phil. Scholar, University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan

Urooj Fatima Alvi, University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan

Assistant Professor, Department of English

Published

2023-12-25

How to Cite

1.
Nisa A, Sarfraz Z, Fatima Alvi U. A Linguistic Analysis of Technical and Non-Technical Language in TED talks on Science and Technology. Corporum [Internet]. 2023Dec.25 [cited 2024Mar.5];6(2):115-41. Available from: https://journals.au.edu.pk/ojscrc/index.php/crc/article/view/264