DOI: 10.5176/2251-3566_L314.55

Authors: Hazel D. Joaquin

Abstract: This corpus study aims of comparing the lexical and syntactical functions of on-going and going on. A thorough analysis is done on ascertaining their meanings, distributions, collocations, registers, and grammatical constructions with the help of Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA). It has been noted in the analysis that the two related constructions do not share the same lexical meaning and distribution. On-going is used as adjective to describe something, particularly a noun that is presently happening or continuing. It usually collocates with articles an and the and follows the grammatical pattern on-going + noun. While going on functions as verb and usually appears with Be verbs, particularly after the contraction ‘what’s’ as its collocate. It is also used in interrogative statements and as an idiomatic expression which means an informal greeting or an expression of concern. The corpus-based data are useful as they provide additional information not found in the dictionaries.

Keywords: corpora; distribution; collocation; register

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