LINKS TO CORPORA
314 persuasive essays annotated for claims, effectiveness of claims, relationships amoung the claims, and holistic essay scores. The essays were written by undergraduate students at a public university in the United States who were native speakers of English.
LINKS TO OTHER FREELY AVAILABLE CORPUS/NLP TOOLS
AntConc is a great free concordancing program written by Laurence Anthony. Check it out here. Laurence has a number of other helpful tools on his software page as well, so check them out.
Coh-Metrix is an advanced natural language processing tool that analyses a number of textual features related to cohesion, lexical sophistication, syntactic complexity, and text difficulty. Check it out here.
VocabProfile is a great text analysis program with a free online interface. It is particularly useful for quickly assessing learner text difficulty. The web interface is maintained by Tom Cobb and is based on the program Range, which was written by Heatley and Nation. Check out Tom's other programs here as well.
Xiaofei Lu has a number of tools on his website that calculate syntactic and lexical elements of texts. He also has a few tools for comparisons between Chinese and English.