University Of Tasmania
79559 - I rest my case.pdf (487.49 kB)

'I rest my case': Linguistic resources used by successful young writers of persuasive texts

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conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-23, 06:56 authored by Damon ThomasDamon Thomas, Angela ThomasAngela Thomas
This paper investigates persuasive strategies used by 15 Tasmanian year 5 students who scored highly on the written component of the 2011 NAPLAN test. The texts were analysed with two frameworks, the first drawn from APPRAISAL theory and the second from classical rhetoric. Initially, the ENGAGEMENT system (see White, 2003; Martin & White, 2005) was used to examine linguistic resources deployed by these students to adopt stances toward the views of others and to include their readers as discourse participants. Secondly, the analysis sought to uncover figures of speech from STYLE, the third canon of classical rhetoric (see Aristotle, trans. 2004), deployed by the students to achieve a number of persuasive effects. Lastly, the analysis was used to outline how resources from each tradition were sometimes deployed in pairs or clusters by the students. This paper presents work-in-progress for the development of a systematic picture of students’ rhetorical capabilities across years 3, 5, 7 and 9.


Publication title

To Boldly Proceed: Proceedings of the 39th International Systemic Functional Congress


J. Knox






Faculty of Education


The Organising Committee of the 39th International Systemic Functional Congress, Sydney

Place of publication


Event title

39th International Systemic Functional Congress

Event Venue

Sydney, Australia

Date of Event (Start Date)


Date of Event (End Date)


Rights statement

Copyright 2012 The Authors

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Learner and learning not elsewhere classified