Temporal Conjunctions in Medical Case Presentations: Examples from Case Presentations by Native and Taiwanese Physicians

By Hsuan Hung, Jing-Jane Tsai and Pi-Ching Chen.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Despite the long-standing interest in L2 writing and the new academic trend of English for medical purposes, research studies that explore language features of medical writing by physicians in Taiwan remain scant, and little pedagogical instruction has been suggested for case report writing instruction, not to mention the instruction of case presentation, which is a core section within a case report. This study created a corpus of 40 case presentations from international and Taiwan-published medical journals. Hand-tagged analysis and a concordance program were used to explore the temporal conjunctions by L1 and L2 writers. The findings indicate that although both of native and Taiwanese physicians use similar conjunctions, native physicians use clear time phrases (e.g. 2 days after admission) to describe chronological medical events while Taiwanese writers usually use conjunctions without a mark of time (e.g. after admission) to describe the order in medical events. In addition, the differences in using conjunctions are the patterns and the locations. The findings in this study are particularly useful to Taiwanese medical writers because it not only allows them to gain a better understanding of international case presentations but also gives them a better insight of word usages in case presentations for publication.

Keywords: Medical English, Case Presentations, Temporal Conjunctions, Collocation, L2 Writing

International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp.255-264. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 645.742KB).

Hsuan Hung

Graduate Student, Department of Foreign Languages and Literature, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan

Hsuan Hung is a graduate student in the Department of Foreign Languages and Literature, National Cheng Kung University, R. O. C. Also, she is an English teacher in the elementary school. With abundant experiences in TESOL, Hung conducts research studies on reading strategies for advanced learners, and explores the instruction of reader theaters to empower low achievers in elementary schools. Now she works on English for medical purposes, and focuses on promoting L2’s professional writing.

Dr. Jing-Jane Tsai

National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan

Dr. Tsai earned his doctoral degree from College of Medicine, Free University of West Berlin, Germany. His research interests are epilepsy and medical education.

Dr. Pi-Ching Chen

Chang Jung Christian University, Taiwan

Dr. Chen earned her MA degree from Oklahoma City University and the doctoral degree from University of South Dakota. Her research interests are TESOL and English for Specific Purposes (ESP).


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