Whether you’re interested in understanding the structure and complexity of a text, you want to understand its CEFR level or you’re looking to assess the skill of the language user, you should analyse a text in English with Text Inspector.  

Using this detailed insight into real-world language use, you can tailor your curriculum materials, lesson plans and assessments to the real needs of your ESOL students, understand what they are currently capable of and optimise the learning process to deliver better results.

If you’re a learner, you can also use the information to guide your independent language learning and highlight any areas for improvement. This can be especially useful if you’re intending to study at an English-speaking educational institution or achieve a certain CEFL level in English.

Because we employ a combination of both established and innovative metrics, global universities and educational institutions also use the Text Inspector tool when working on research projects and providing learning and assessment opportunities for their students.

Whatever your reason for analysing a text in English, Text Inspector can provide the tools you need for success in your language projects.

 

How does text analysis in English work?

Modern text analysis uses corpus linguisticscomputational linguistics and sometimes a subfield of linguistics and artificial intelligence called natural language processing (NLP) to look at texts quantitatively and systematically. This provides insight into both the language itself and the skill of a language learner in an accurate and detailed way.  

However, as the Linguistic Society of America quite rightly points out, “Although computers can do amazing things, what the human brain does in using English (or any other language) is even more complex.” 

Humans have an instinctive understanding of language and there are often nuances that computers are as yet unable to accurately identify and describe when they use just one approach to text analysis in English. 

For this reason, we created Text Inspector. It makes use of a variety of proven linguistics research and text analysis tools, corpora, computations and theories that when combined, provide a more accurate insight into English language use. 

 

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This includes the following:

Readability

Text Inspector uses metrics such as sentence count, token count, type count, syllable count, token-type ratio, average sentence length, average sentence length and readability scores such as Flesch-Kincaid Grade to describe the general complexity of the text. 

[Learn more here].

Lexical diversity

By analysing how many different words are contained within a text (lexical diversity), we can understand the English vocabulary level of the user and their skill when using the language. 

[Learn more here]. 

British National Corpus

The BNC tells us how British English is actually used in the real world, not only how we believe it is used. Again, this will help shed light on the language user’s fluency and overall language level.

[Learn more here]

Corpus of American English

Like the BNC, the Corpus of American English tells us how language is used in the real world.

[Learn more here]. 

Academic Word List (AWL) and Phrases

The AWL is a collection of 570 groups of words that are commonly used within academic settings. Unconnected to any particular topic, it sheds light on specialised language use at a higher level and is particularly useful for ESOL teachers and students preparing for higher-level study in an English speaking institution. 

[Find out how it was created by reading our interview with linguist Averil Coxhead here or learn more about the AWL here].

English Vocabulary Profile (EVP)

This metric was created by Text Inspector and Cambridge University Press and provides detailed information about which words, phrases, idioms and collocations are used at each level of language learning according to the CEFR.

[Find out more here]. 

Scorecard

The Scorecard feature provides at-a-glance information regarding the English language level of your students or a given text according to the CEFR.

This allows you to understand your learners better without the need for a stressful exam and can help teachers, course developers and curriculum creators to tailor their materials to the real-world needs of their learners.

[Find out more here or watch our short video about the Scorecard.

Part of Speech Tagging

It’s not only the vocabulary itself that provides information about language and its use but also grammar and its use.

By tagging (labelling) each part of speech such as nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs and so on, we can understand language complexity and again, the language level of the learner.

[Find out more here]

Metadiscourse markers

Metadiscourse markers are transition words commonly used in academic texts. They typically add information, connect it together, share their option or degree of certainty or improve the readability of the text.

Understanding these markers can be useful when it comes to identifying the language level of the user and whether they are prepared for higher-level study at an English speaking university or college.

Again, course developers can also use the data to develop better course materials and provide better support to learners.

[Find out more about metadiscourse markers and how we use them in Text Inspector here. You can also see some research about how metadiscourse markers are used at different CEFR levels here]. 

User insight

Uniquely, Text Inspector is created to hand the user control of the analysis, allowing you to modify and change the results where you think the computer might not be quite right.

This is because we understand the limitations of these tools and the key role that humans still play in language analysis.

Because of this, we allow users to change how their texts are tagged and labelled for analysis. Alongside continued feedback from our customers and clients, we can continue to improve the Text Inspector tool.

How to use Text Inspector to analyse your text in English

With Text Inspector, you can analyse texts of up to 250 words for free. 

Simply head to the workflow page, copy your text and paste it into the search box. If you’d prefer, you can also upload your text directly to the page. 

Next select writing, reading or listening and click the ‘analyse’ button. You’ll be taken to a summary page with an overview of the analysis including sentence count, readability, token-type ratio and syllable count.

We have designed Text Inspector to be as simple or complex as you need.

For more detailed information, you can click the menu options on the left side of the page and find out more about what the metrics mean by heading to our features pages.

You can also watch our helpful YouTube video: How to Use Text Inspector in Under 4 Minutes here. 

To analyse longer texts, download your data or access the English Vocabulary Profile, Academic Word List or Scorecard, simply upgrade to one of our affordable subscriptions. We have options for individuals and organisations of all sizes. 

 

Analyse a text in English with Text Inspector

Use Text Inspector to analyse a text in English and you can gain a real insight into English language use and optimise your understanding, learning and teaching of the language. 

Try the Text Inspector tool today or find out more about our affordable subscription options here