What a Discourse Community Is?

Most people might not know what a discourse community is. Of course, I never understood what a discourse community is either until I spent time research and learning about it. However, to understand what a discourse community is, individuals need to know the concept of the discourse community. James Paul Gee states, “Discourses are ways of being in the world; they are forms of life which integrate words, acts, values, beliefs, attitudes, and social identities as well as gestures, glances, body positions, and clothes” (278).

Gee believes that every group of people has a different way of speaking and communicating with each other.

According to James Paul Gee: “a discourse community stands for saying, doing, being, valuing, and believing” (278). John Swales, a linguist elucidated who defined a community must have 6 characteristics to make it a discourse community. They must have common public goals, mechanisms of intercommunications, mechanisms provide information, genres, Lexis, and a threshold level of members. In other words, a discourse community is a group of people communicating about a topic or field.

The purpose and mission of the computing community is to share the resources and help with each other out.

Therefore, I choose to do my research on the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery). Methods The best way for me to get a deeper understanding of ACM is to interview their community members. In fact, I had planned and interviewed a few members of the community, but none of them seems successful. ACM is an online organization and its headquarter is located New York.

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So, I was unable to meet directly with one of their employees to discuss further information. In this situation, I decided to send an email to ACM asking for an interview with some of my questions. I talked with an ACM Member Services and they replied me that according to the ACM privacy policy they are not allowed to solicit members, but I can reach out to ACM members on their various social networking website.

Therefore, the best method for me to get in touch with them is sending the email out and looking through their various social networking websites. An activity triangle was used to display the activity system of the ACM community labeled figure 1.1. Figure 1.1: Activity Theory Worksheet Interview Sessions Since the ACM is an online organization, I was trying to get in contact with an ACM member via Facebook. Luckily, I have found a few ACM members on Facebook and are able to send private message to them asking for an interview. I received a message from an ACM member who was graduated with a master’s degree at the University of Memphis. Dr. McCracken was the president of the ACM when he was a student, now he is serving as the student chapter in an advisory capacity. He has been working as an application developer for FedEx, IBM, and now a software engineering manager for the Netlab Research Group. Also, he helped start the Memphis Game

Developers and serve as an organizer for the Memphis Technology Foundation. He was quick to answer my interview questions. My questions were basically asking about the specialized language used in the group, the genres that used within the group, the goal of the group, how newcomers into the group, and how the members communicate with each other. Goal of ACM, ACM was founded at the dawn of the computer age back in 1947 under the name Eastern Association for Computing Machinery. It is served as the world oldest and largest industrial computing society. ACM’s goal is to open exchange of ideas, freedom of thought, and expressions. Imagine you can work with the best researchers and professionals in the world. With ACM, you have the opportunity to do that. ACM is not just an exchange of ideas and the freedom of thoughts, they also provide opportunities for lifelong learning, career development, and professional networking.

Also, ACM brings computing educators, researchers and professionals together to share resources and address all the problems that they are facing and challenge that might arrive in the future. The international organization, ICSU (International Council for Science) was supported by ACM because they have similar goals to meet. Membership To become a member of the ACM, you have to know that ACM adopted grade for its members include Professional members and Student members. To qualify a professional membership, individuals must have a bachelor’s degree or two years full-time employment in the IT field, and a fill in an application form for $99. If individuals want to access the ACM Digital Library, the cost will be $198.

ACM Digital Library provides a lot of resources which includes more than 2 million pages of text. If individuals qualify for student membership, they only need to pay $19 fee for the application form, and the ACM Digital Library will cost only $42. The ACM has more than 100,000 members worldwide, more than half of its members are from outside of the United States. That means you can communicate with members who’s from different countries. Also, the Learning Center Online can help improve an individual’s IT skills and have one to one class with some professional members. An ACM member not only can enjoy their benefits, but also with ACM’s Career & Job Center, which helps them finds an IT job easier than other. Communication and tools Communication is very important for a community. The ACM communication is based on email, important announcement and notice will be sent by email to all the group members.

During the research of the ACM community, I noticed that community members use online tools such as Facebook, Skype, Discord, Group Me, and Email to communicate with each other. As everybody knows, Email is one of the most common online tools people used to communicate with each other. So, members in the ACM will check their email constantly to make sure that they do not miss out on any information. Anna M. Johns states, “the focus is on texts and language, the genres and lexis that enable members throughout the world to maintain their goals, regulate their membership, and communicate efficiently with one another” (321). She believes that every member needs to understand and communicate with each other in a similar way, that is the key they will keep them growing and lead them to meet their goals. Of course, communication is very important in a community.

For instance, ACM’s 16 Council members meet two times a year with the conference, and they use online tools to communicate with each other also. That is the way they can keep on the track to meet their goal. Specialized Language Every community has their own specialized language that they used in the community, so in that case having a specialized language is very important. However, the specialized language is only used by the group members and only they can understand, so there are also many other ways to communicate with each other too. Of course, the ACM has their specialized language.

There are many computer languages that are discussed by ACM members. For instance, the ABI (Application Binary Interface) is a specification for the API (application programming interface) and machine language for a hardware platform. An API is a software intermediary that allows two applications to talk to each other. For instance, each time you send an message on Facebook, you are using an API. The ABI is very similar to the API, think of it as the compiled version of an API. An ABI defines how data structures or computational routines are accessed in machine code. As well as the Ada, Pascal-based programming language and it is a structured, statically typed programming language. Ada is a safety programming language that’s used in the area for traffic systems and banking. For instance, most of the software in the Boeing 777 was developed in Ada.

However, these languages can be learnt and known by non-members, but what they may not know is the acronyms for all the various publications and special interest groups. For instance, TOG stands for “ACM Transactions on Graphics” journal, a famous interest group is SIGGRAPH is the group on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques, and ICPS stands for “ACM’s International Conference Proceeding Series” program. Conclusion The community would not be successful without communication. With all things considered, the ACM is a discourse community that communicates efficiently. They have common specialized languages and genres that helped community member communicates with each other quickly. Through the interview with Dr. McCracken, I am getting deeper understanding about the ACM community. I hope that my analysis would help someone to get a better understanding the ACM community and their goal. In the future, I would like to prepare myself to join the ACM community.

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What a Discourse Community Is?. (2022, Apr 21). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/what-a-discourse-community-is/

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