‘That is very important, isn’t it?’
Abstract: This study explores the use of content-oriented questions in British and Montenegrin university lectures. It examines their formal realisation, their frequency and their contextual functions, as well as the differences and similarities related to these questions between British linguistics lectures taken from the standard British corpora, and a specially compiled corpus of Montenegrin linguistics lectures. Compared to previous studies on content-oriented questions, one modified and five new functions are revealed, alongside one new formal realisation. The main differences between the corpora include the greater frequency of content-oriented questions in the Montenegrin lectures and a new questioning realisation, found only in the Montenegrin corpus, which is potentially attributable to differences between academic cultures. The major similarities relate to the use of the four most common question forms, which perform the same contextual functions. This contrastive study thus provides insights into the additional communicative functions and forms of content-oriented questions in university lectures.
Keywords: British / Montenegrin / lectures / contextual functions / linguistics / content oriented questions
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