Research at the Department of French

The research conducted at the Department focuses on the use of modern language in different contexts.

    Our research topics include

    • linguistic interaction and discourse
    • digital communication
    • foreign language learning and teaching
    • the cognitive and textgenetic processes of writing and translation
    • the use of language and translation technology
    • translator education
    • French-speaking literature and culture

    Research projects

    The DIGILANG project / LOG corpus

    The LOG corpus is one of the subprojects of the Digilang project. The LOG corpus focuses on the cognitive processes of writing and translation, based on a corpus of log files. The aim of the project is to analyse how and through what type of process a written or a translated text emerges: for instance, the order that the different parts of a text are created in or how a computer-generated translation is edited.

    The LOG corpus has been collected using two kinds of computer programs that are based on different research fields and theoretical approaches: the study of cognitive processes (e.g., ScriptLog, Translog, InputLog) and the analysis of textual genetics (GenoGraphiX).

    The corpus can be annotated in the same way as other Digilang corpora, but our way of using visualisations with the material allows us to illustrate the obtained information in a more comprehensive manner. This method of visualisation can also be applied in the description of other materials.

    Furthermore, to support the information obtained from log files, verbalisations (thinking aloud, stimulated recall) and/or eye-tracking methods can also be used (future collaboration with Turku Research HuB). 

    Research group: Christophe Leblay, Maarit Mutta, Leena Salmi and Maarit Koponen


    Research on linguistic fluency and writing

    Fluency is a multifaceted phenomenon that can be associated with various contexts of language use. In this research group, the focus is on fluency in language learning and use, for instance in different learning and teaching environments as well as in multimodal interactions. From the perspective of writing studies, our research on fluency focuses on the relationship between process and product, on the emergence of writing profiles and on the role that metalinguistic knowledge plays in the study of the phenomenon. Furthermore, we also study fluency from the perspective of reception, to explore how it can be associated with the listening process, from the act of decoding speech to understanding spoken utterances. Our research on fluency is closely related to the Fluency and Disfluency Features in L2 Speech (FDF2) project. 

    Tutkimusryhmä: Maarit Mutta, Outi Veivo, Pekka Lintunen, Pauliina Peltonen, Sanna Olkkonen ja Magdalena Szyszka


    The TERs research group, ITEM/CNRS-ENS

    The background of the TERs research group is in textual genetics. At ITEM (Institut des Textes et Manuscrits Modernes), Christophe Leblay serves as the head of a research group devoted to the chronological dimension of writing and its representations. The data that documents how students learn to write is interesting for researchers in relation to temporal visualisations of writing and what they could offer for the learning and teaching of writing in different educational contexts (school, university, working life). The research group’s methodological work combines textual genetics and mathematical graph theories. These methods offer precise visualisation tools for the study of text writing and text processing. They are very different from the traditional visualisation techniques used in spatio-temporal analysis. 

    Research group: Christophe Leblay (University of Turku), Gilles Caporossi (HEC & GERAD, Canada), Denis (Foucambert UQÀM, Canada), Claire Doquet (University of Paris 3), Fanny Rinck (University of Grenoble), Nathalie (Matheu University of Montpellier 3, Post-doc), Hélène-Sarah Bécotte (doctoral candidate)


    Programme Visualization: Genographix

    The development of the GenoGraphiX program in collaboration with G. Caporossi. Soon to be available online. 

    Partners: Christophe Leblay (University of Turku, Finland) and Gilles Caporossi (HEC Montréal, Canada)


    Semantics of Verbal Interaction – Sémantique de l'interaction verbale (SIV)

    The aim of this research project is to compare two speech acts – REMERCIER (to thank) and REPROCHER (to reproach) – and how they are conceptualised and realised in 13 different languages: French of France, American English, Spanish (of Spain), Mexican Spanish, German, Romanian, Finnish, Ukrainian, Chinese, Japanese, Arabic and the Tswana language (Botswana). The research will be executed within the theoretical framework of the Semantics of Argumentative Possibilities, developed by Professor Emerita Olga Galatanu.

    Principal investigator: Olga Galatanu (Université de Nantes, France). Researchers: Adelhadi Bellachhab (Université de Nantes), Ana-Maria Cozma (University of Turku), Sophie Anquetil (Université de Limoges) et al.

    New discourses and counter-discourses in social media during the French presidential election of 2017

    The objective of this research project (2017–2019) is to study news published on (professional) media channels and comments on social media during the French presidential election of 2017. The data consist of news, their parodies, and tweets on social media.  The project aims to answer the following questions:

    1. What kinds of topics and phenomena do different media channels turn into news and commentary and how are they (re)presented?
    2. What type of “news” are news parodies? 
    3. How was the campaign commented on in social media?   

    This research project utilises mixed methods. The data was collected during the 2017 election from online newspapers and social media.  

    Research group: Marjut Johansson, Ana-Maria Cozma, Milla Luodonpää-Manni and Leena Salmi, with MA students Janita Käyhkö, Kim Lehtonen and Mikko Kukkonen


    Recent publications