A Genre-Based Approach to the Teaching of Legal and Business English: The GENTT Specialized Corpus in the LSP Classroom

  • Anabel Borja AlbiEmail author
  • Natividad Juste Vidal
  • Pilar Ordóñez López
  • Tomás Conde
Part of the Educational Linguistics book series (EDUL, volume 19)


This chapter focuses on the application of a corpus of specialized genres to the teaching of legal and business English for students of translation at a graduate level. It includes a number of practical learning activities aimed to improve their reading and writing skills, which proved to be the most relevant skills for the acquisition of Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) after analysing the needs of the students. The issues dealt with in these activities include collocations, lexis, macrostructure, suffixed prepositions and expressions of obligation, permission and prohibition. The multilingual corpus of specialized professional full-text documents we work with has been developed by the GENTT (Textual Genres for Translation) Research Group and provides teachers and learners of professional languages with text models and patterns to be used as conceptual, textual, linguistic and terminological reference. The GENTT corpus is a collaborative web 2.0 environment that enables teachers and students to search, feed, download and manage the documents contained in the corpus by means of a user-friendly online interface, making it an effective teaching-learning Internet tool in the area of LSP.


Teaching Rationale Rhetorical Device Legal Language Genre Classification Specialized Translation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Adolphs, S. 2006. Introducing electronic test analysis. A practical guide for language and literary studies. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  2. Bazerman, C. 1988. Shaping written knowledge. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press.Google Scholar
  3. Bazerman, C., and D. Russell. 2002. Writing selves/writing societies: Research from activity perspectives. Perspectives on writing. Fort Collins: The WAC Clearinghouse.Google Scholar
  4. Bhatia, V.K. 1993. Analyzing genre: Language use in professional settings. London: Longman.Google Scholar
  5. Bhatia, Vijay V.K. 1997. Translating legal genres. In Text typology and translation, ed. Anna Trosborg, 10–15. Amsterdam: Benjamin.Google Scholar
  6. Bhatia, V.K. 2004. Worlds of written discourse: A genre-based view. London/New York: Continuum.Google Scholar
  7. Bhatia, V.K., C.N. Candlin, and J. Engberg (eds.). 2008. Legal discourse across cultures and systems. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press.Google Scholar
  8. Borja, A. 2005. Organización del conocimiento para la traducción jurídica a través de sistemas expertos basados en el concepto de género textual. In El género textual y la traducción. Reflexiones teóricas y aplicaciones pedagógicas, ed. I. García Izquierdo, 40–42. Bern: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  9. Danet, B. 1985. Language in the legal process. In Handbook of discourse analysis, vol. 1, ed. T. Van Dijk. London: Academic.Google Scholar
  10. Duckworth, M. 1995. Oxford business English. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  11. Dudley-Evans, T., and M.J. St John. 1998. Development in English for specific purposes: A multi-disciplinary approach. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Gunnarsson, B.L. 1984. Functional comprehensibility of legislative texts. Experiments with a Swedish Act of Parliament. In Studies of legal discourse, Monographic issue: Text 4, ed. Danet Brenda, 1–3. Berlin/New York: Mouton Publishers.Google Scholar
  13. Hewings, M. 2002. A History of ESP through English for specific purposes. English for Specific Purposes World 1(3). Retrieved July 5, 2010, from
  14. John, P.D., and S. Wheeler. 2008. The digital classroom: Harnessing technology for the future. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  15. Pickett, D. 1986. Business English. Falling between two stools. Comlon 26: 16–21.Google Scholar
  16. Swales, J. 1990. Genre analysis. English in academic and research settings. Cambridge/New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Swales, J. 2004. Research genres. Explorations and applications. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Tribble, C. 1997. Improving corpora for ELT: Quick-and-dirty ways of developing corpora for language teaching. In PALC’97 Proceedings, eds. J. Melia and B. Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk. Lodz: Lodz University Press. Retrieved July 5, 2010, from

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anabel Borja Albi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Natividad Juste Vidal
    • 1
  • Pilar Ordóñez López
    • 1
  • Tomás Conde
    • 2
  1. 1.Departamento de Traducción y Comunicación, GENTT Research GroupUniversitat Jaume ICastellónSpain
  2. 2.Departamento de Filología Inglesa y AlemanaUniversidad del País VascoVitoria-GasteizSpain

Personalised recommendations