Textual Metafunction: A Basis for Academic Literacy in Constitutional Law

  • Ilene Rojas García Universidad Tecnológica de Pereira
Keywords: academic literacy, systemic-functional linguistics, metafunction, constitutional law, genre-based pedagogy

Abstract

Th is article addresses the imperative of instruction on reading in the disciplines in higher education. Four texts used as study material in a Constitutional Law course at Universidad del Norte, Colombia, were analyzed. The study describes the Theme-Rheme patterns, as well as the method of development and periodicity. From there, a description of the explanatory genre of the doctrine of Law was made up. The analysis showed that discursive texture can cause trouble to students when there are non-congruent patterns or complex constructions. For instance at the discourse-semantic level, the information progresses through subordinate clauses and sometimes the topic does not correspond with the known information. In regard to the lexical-grammatical level, the presence of referential terms restricts linear reading and nominalizations increase conceptual density. Besides, the marked Theme interrupts the flow of speech, while the use of the interpersonal Theme requires an expert reader. These results constitute the basis for a didactic reading proposal in a communicative competences course with an emphasis on constitutional law; through genre-based pedagogy, the discursive patterns that intervene in learning are evidenced.

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Author Biography

Ilene Rojas García, Universidad Tecnológica de Pereira

Ed. D., Fundación Universidad del Norte, Barranquilla, Colombia. Profesora transitoria, Facultad de Educación, Universidad Tecnológica de Pereira, Colombia.

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Published
2021-01-28
How to Cite
Rojas GarcíaI. (2021). Textual Metafunction: A Basis for Academic Literacy in Constitutional Law. Íkala, 26(1), 167-182. https://doi.org/10.17533/udea.ikala.v26n01a01