Publish perish as an instruction-end learning opportunity

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A curriculum for technical academic writing, based on pragmatic considerations of publication. Seven years in implementation.

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Publish perish as an instruction-end learning opportunity

  1. 1. Lawrie Hunter Kochi University of Technology http://lawriehunter.com Publish or perish as an instruction-end learning opportunity
  2. 2. Publish or perish as an instruction-end learning opportunity   The strong external constraints placed on the technical academic writing program reported here demand a highly pragmatic approach to curriculum and instructional design. External constraints, plus the intense nature of technical doctorate research, do not allow sufficient time for grammar study to any useful extent. However, the small size of the semi-annual cohort makes a number of innovative curriculum interventions feasible. Central learner needs were identified as (1) practical writing skills for the creation of publishable papers; (2) a support network to enable learner navigation through the mentor/editor writing center decision matrix; and (3) a writing program to prepare the learner for work with support personnel and to build composition skills (analytical skills centered around argument and coherence skills focusing on readability) for the learner's professional future.   Within the above program, grammar was made a peripheral concern; argument the center of readability work; and witting mimicry of model language a major tool. Emphasis was placed on meta-language to enable learners to take a 'witting client' position in interactions with support services.   To date more than half of the participants have made use of the writing center services; among those, more than half have achieved semi-autonomy in the writing of research papers in their niche topic areas. These results suggest that the readability curriculum may have broader applicability.
  3. 3. No need to take notes :^o You can download this powerpoint (and many more) from http://www.core.kochi-tech.ac.jp/hunter/ or http://www.core.kochi-tech.ac.jp/hunter/ or http://www.slideshare.net/rolenzo
  4. 4. Dimensions of Media Object Compehensibility Lawrie Hunter Kochi University of Technology http://www.core.kochi-tech.ac.jp/hunter/ KUT Island of Shikoku
  5. 5. Background 1982, 1987: Technical rewriter, Techwrite, Tokyo 1990-now: Freelance academic rewriter, Japan 1996-now: Super translation team member -Japanese construction ministry -World Water Forum Kyoto -Interviews editor, Information Design Jnl. 1998- Referee, CATaC conferences 1999- Editorial team, JALTCALL conferences 2004- Editorial board, Web Based Communities 2009- Referee, CALL journal Instructor Mathematics EFL Assoc. Professor EFL Intercultural Comm. Professor EFL CALL EFL Critical thinking ESP technical writing EAP for engineers
  6. 7. CONSTRAINTS
  7. 8. KUT TAW scenario <ul><li>Since 2002: </li></ul><ul><li>- Japanese government scholarships </li></ul><ul><li>- for foreign students </li></ul><ul><li>- in technical doctoral programmes. </li></ul><ul><li>! Graduation requirements: </li></ul><ul><li>- 2+ refereed papers in top journals </li></ul><ul><li>- dissertation in English </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Further L2 acquisition </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>to the point of near-independence </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>during the study period </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>is NOT a realistic strategy. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 9. SCENARIO ESP EAP EAP HUMANITIES TAW EX EY EZ English for specific purposes English for academic purposes Technical academic writing
  9. 11. 1 Found problem: highly constrained TAW 2 Needs analysis: learner profile 3 Framing: possible solutions OUTLINE
  10. 12. Found problem Found problem: constrained TAW Needs analysis: learner profile Framing: possible solutions How to maximize TAW functionality? -language instruction? -pragmatic writing instruction? -mimicry training? -argumentation instruction? -learner use of editor service? -learner use of mentor service?
  11. 13. Found problem Found problem: constrained TAW Needs analysis: learner profile Framing: possible solutions How to maximize TAW functionality? -language instruction? -pragmatic writing instruction? -mimicry training? -argumentation instruction? -learner use of editor service? -learner use of mentor service? What is the core issue here? -how to maximize publication success? -how to maximize ongoing growth?
  12. 14. NEEDS
  13. 15. Learner profile TAW objectives Variable English skill/knowledge Variable intrinsic motivation Uniform high extrinsic motivation High anxiety about research/completion High anxiety about conference presentation Communicative competence Writing support Conference presentation support RP how-to RP support TAW skill to independence Degree programme demands 3-year limit 2 refereed papers in English Dissertation in English Needs analysis Found problem: constrained TAW Needs analysis: learner profile Framing: possible solutions
  14. 16. EAP best practice Key factors in successful academic performance Taken from Ginther, A. and Grant, L. (1996) A review of the academic needs of native English-speaking college students in the United States. Research monograph series MS-1. Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service Banerjee, D. and Wall, D. (2006) Assessing and reporting performances on pre-sessional EAP courses: Developing a final assessment checklist and investigating its validity. Journal of English for academic purposes 5(2006) 50-69. Found problem: constrained TAW Needs analysis: learner profile Framing: possible solutions Reading Understanding the main idea of one ’s reading Reaching valid conclusions Making critical evaluations of content Comprehending significant detail Understanding explicitly stated information Detecting inferences between the lines Writing Organization Summarization Well-formed sentences Vocabulary Usage Research skills Economy Clarity Providing sufficient evidence Grammatical Correctly punctuated Ability to use 'standard' academic discourse Knowing what your tutor-examinee values (and giving it to him/her)
  15. 17. TAW writing: needs analysis Knowledge Niche grammar structures Niche rhetorical structures General register repertoires (distinguishing formal academic from informal academic) Research Paper text structure and information structure Language skills Argument sequencing Info-structured sentence generation Mimicry of model language NOTICING Facilities Concordance & collocation resources Model research papers (annotated * ) *c.f. Brown and Brown’s ‘annotation’
  16. 18. SOLUTIONS
  17. 19. Possible solutions Maximization of TAW functionality 1 Editor/mentor prep 2 Pragmatic language curriculum 3 Strategic language curriculum - Note: all of these hinge on argument and accessibility Found problem: constrained TAW Needs analysis: learner profile Framing: possible solutions
  18. 21. 2007 curriculum
  19. 22. 2009 curriculum
  20. 23. PhD English writing classes: editor's eye curriculum Textbook: How Academic Writing Works (2nd edition) by Hunter, KUT Press. Required also: Science Research Writing by Glasman-Deal, Imperial College Press. Former textbook: Academic Writing for Graduate Students by Swales and Feak (U. of Michigan Press) Key concepts: 1. How to write to the standard of the target journal. 2. How to write maximally readable Formal Academic English. 3. How to use the writing techniques in model papers. (cf. noticing) Support is given in checking English quality in model papers. 4. How to communicate with a writing mentor or editor. 5. How to correct one' s English using mentor feedback. How to check that an editor has not damaged the meaning in the paper.
  21. 24. REFRAME
  22. 25. Reframing: learner:instructor becomes client:advisor Language knowledge Language skills Task modes Technical Writing II Language structures vs. information structures Text structures: G-S, P-P-S, .... Registers Using text structures Summarizing Data commentary Using lexical units to show info structures Editing through a checklist Write-edit-rewrite (uncoded to coded) Information structure mapping Swales & Feak exercises Research Writing Ambiguity Readability (stress position, topic position) Rhetorical moves: framing, relationships, cohesion RP structure RP lexical units Language features in RP sections Optimizing readability -subject-verb proximity -single function for 1 unit of discourse -emphasis at syntactic closure points Avoiding ambiguity Creating, maintaining cohesion Use, application of register knowledge Write-edit-rewrite (uncoded to coded) Readability work Swales & Feak exercises
  23. 26. Reframing: learner:instructor becomes client:advisor Language knowledge Language skills Task modes Technical Writing II Language structures vs. information structures Text structures: G-S, P-P-S, .... Registers Using text structures Summarizing Data commentary Using lexical units to show info structures Editing through a checklist Write-edit-rewrite (uncoded to coded) Information structure mapping Swales & Feak exercises Dossier collection work Research Writing Ambiguity Readability (stress position, topic position) Rhetorical moves: framing, relationships, cohesion RP structure RP lexical units Language features in RP sections Optimizing readability -subject-verb proximity -single function for 1 unit of discourse -emphasis at syntactic closure points Avoiding ambiguity Creating, maintaining cohesion Use, application of register knowledge Write-edit-rewrite (uncoded to coded) Readability work Swales & Feak exercises Dossier manipulation
  24. 27. STYLE DOSSIER WORK
  25. 28. Dossier collection tasks A. Research writing register models B. Informal discussion register models C. Glossary
  26. 29. Dossier collection tasks A. Research writing register models - EEK! B. Informal discussion register models C. Glossary (EEK: take a look in the horse’s mouth)
  27. 30. Reframing: client:advisor becomes user:consultant Claim: when we add dossier work , no additional knowledge or skills are required Language knowledge Language skills Task modes Technical Writing II Language structures vs. information structures Text structures: G-S, P-P-S, .... Registers Using text structures Summarizing Data commentary Using lexical units to show info structures Editing through a checklist Write-edit-rewrite (uncoded to coded) Information structure mapping Swales & Feak exercises Dossier collection work Research Writing Ambiguity Readability (stress position, topic position) Rhetorical moves: framing, relationships, cohesion RP structure RP lexical units Language features in RP sections Optimizing readability -subject-verb proximity -single function for 1 unit of discourse -emphasis at syntactic closure points Avoiding ambiguity Creating, maintaining cohesion Use, application of register knowledge Write-edit-rewrite (uncoded to coded) Readability work Swales & Feak exercises Dossier manipulation
  28. 32. LEARNER AS CLIENT
  29. 35. Hunter' s 2-page Edit System editor corrects errors for a finished paper basically no learning coded feedback 1-2 pages at a time much learning Editing service
  30. 36. Coded feedback editor corrects errors for a finished paper no client effort type of error is marked editor asks questions client must correct the problems Uncoded feedback
  31. 37. no rejections by journals 132 2-page edits 70 hours editing 2009 at KUT: Hunter' s consulting 50 hours discussion
  32. 38. The client must have: Completed TW2 and RW courses Minimum requirements for 2-page editing service Enough time until deadline (2+ weeks)
  33. 39. Editing service: entry criteria Academic editing client attributes: Makes few grammar errors. Can identify native-like rhetorical flow. Can identify perfectly unambiguous text. Consistently learns from error correction (coded/uncoded). Wants to learn from error correction. Writes well by mimicry. Does not decay with time away from English. Has a sense of argument. Writes unambiguous text by logic/puzzle-solving. Can identify meaning damage in rewrites. NB: learners with the converse of the above positive attributes exist in large(r) numbers.
  34. 40. Self-assess strategy tool Methodology frame Entry Setting Final user success Strong enough grammar knowledge and composition skill Some grammar knowledge and composition skill Insufficient grammar knowledge and composition skill time constraints latent development minor/no development Independent writer Model-using independent writer Model-using aided writer Heavily aided writer Ongoing mentored writer Ghost-written writer
  35. 41. <ul><li>1. In this kind of work, first the 'user' must know </li></ul><ul><ul><li>-the tools and objects involved </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>-how to talk about them. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>. </li></ul>Methodology frame Entry Setting Final user success Strong enough grammar knowledge and composition skill Some grammar knowledge and composition skill Insufficient grammar knowledge and composition skill time constraints latent development minor/no development Independent writer Model-using independent writer Model-using aided writer Heavily aided writer Ongoing mentored writer Ghost-written writer
  36. 42. Hunter the style dossier approach METHODOLOGY <ul><li>1. In this kind of work, first the 'user' must know </li></ul><ul><ul><li>-the tools and objects involved </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>-how to talk about them. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2. Second , time and again </li></ul><ul><li>the user must articulate anew his/her course </li></ul><ul><li>through the strategy network </li></ul><ul><li>from entry to final user success. </li></ul>Methodology frame Entry Setting Final user success Strong enough grammar knowledge and composition skill Some grammar knowledge and composition skill Insufficient grammar knowledge and composition skill time constraints latent development minor/no development Independent writer Model-using independent writer Model-using aided writer Heavily aided writer Ongoing mentored writer Ghost-written writer
  37. 43. Methodology frame <ul><li>1. In this kind of work, first the 'user' must know </li></ul><ul><ul><li>-the tools and objects involved </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>-how to talk about them. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2. Second , time and again </li></ul><ul><li>the user must articulate anew his/her course </li></ul><ul><li>through the strategy network </li></ul><ul><li>from entry to final user success. </li></ul><ul><li>3. This ongoing rearticulation consists of </li></ul><ul><li>-self observation of success and time constraints </li></ul><ul><li>-calculation of learning objective achievement probability*. </li></ul><ul><li>*Not everyone will learn to write 'from scratch' well </li></ul><ul><li>and even those who could learn to do so </li></ul><ul><li>may not have sufficient short-term (or even long-term) time. </li></ul>Entry Setting Final user success Strong enough grammar knowledge and composition skill Some grammar knowledge and composition skill Insufficient grammar knowledge and composition skill time constraints latent development minor/no development Independent writer Model-using independent writer Model-using aided writer Heavily aided writer Ongoing mentored writer Ghost-written writer
  38. 44. Methodology frame <ul><li>1. In this kind of work, first the 'user' must know </li></ul><ul><ul><li>-the tools and objects involved </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>-how to talk about them. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2. Second , time and again </li></ul><ul><li>the user must articulate anew his/her course </li></ul><ul><li>through the strategy network </li></ul><ul><li>from entry to final user success. </li></ul><ul><li>3. This ongoing rearticulation consists of </li></ul><ul><li>-self observation of success and time constraints </li></ul><ul><li>-calculation of learning objective achievement probability*. </li></ul><ul><li>4. Native rewriter resource availability/affordability are also key factors in deciding strategy. </li></ul>Entry Setting Final user success Strong enough grammar knowledge and composition skill Some grammar knowledge and composition skill Insufficient grammar knowledge and composition skill time constraints latent development minor/no development Independent writer Model-using independent writer Model-using aided writer Heavily aided writer Ongoing mentored writer Ghost-written writer
  39. 45. SUMMARY
  40. 46. Summary Scenario constraints Learner time Learner variability Research topic granularity RP genre granularity Quality of available models Native rewriter availability/affordability
  41. 47. Summary Scenario constraints Learner time Learner variability Research topic granularity RP genre granularity Quality of available models Native rewriter availability/affordability Compromises Pragmatic strategies Learner revisioned as client, then as user Instructor revisioned as advisor, then as consultant
  42. 48. Summary Hunter the style dossier approach METHODOLOGY Scenario constraints Learner time Learner variability Research topic granularity RP genre granularity Quality of available models Native rewriter availability/affordability Compromises Pragmatic strategies Learner revisioned as client, then as user Instructor revisioned as advisor, then as consultant Task array Grammar work Information structure mapping Register work RP lexis work Write-rewrite Dossier work
  43. 49. PERFUNCTORY CONCLUSION
  44. 50. Inconclusive conclusion How to balance Linguistic bottom-up construction and the scaffolding of noticing ?
  45. 51. Inconclusive conclusion How to balance Linguistic bottom-up construction and the scaffolding of noticing ? Occam’s razor Wikipedia: Bertrand Russell’s &quot;a form of Occam's Razor&quot; which was &quot;Whenever possible, substitute constructions out of known entities for inferences to unknown entities.&quot;
  46. 53. Thank you so much for your kind attention . Please download this ppt from http://www.core.kochi-tech.ac.jp/hunter/ or http://www.core.kochi-tech.ac.jp/hunter/ or http://www.slideshare.net/rolenzo -and write to me. Lawrie Hunter Kochi University of Technology
  47. 55. Sources Hunter the style dossier approach STRUCTURE Banerjee, D. and Wall, D. (2006) Assessing and reporting performances on pre-sessional EAP courses: Developing a final assessment checklist and investigating its validity. Journal of English for academic purposes 5(2006) 50-69. Ferris, D. (2002) Treatment of error in second language student writing . University of Michigan Press. Ginther, A. and Grant, L. (1996) A review of the academic needs of native English-speaking college students in the United States. Research monograph series MS-1. Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service. Glasman-Deal, H. (2010) Science research writing. Imperial College Press. Gopen, G.D. & Swan, J.A. (1990) The Science of Scientific Writing. American Scientist 78 550-558. http://www.americanscientist.org/template/AssetDetail/assetid/23947 Harwood, N. (2006) What do we want EAP teaching materials for? Journal of English for Academic Purposes 4 (2005) 149 -161. Hunter, L. (2009)) How academic writing works. (2 nd edition). KUT Press. Hunter, L. Online resource for English for Academic Purposes: http://del.icio.us/rolenzo/eap Koutsantoni, D. (2006) Rhetorical strategies in engineering research articles and research theses: Advanced academic literacy and relations of power. Journal of English for Academic Purposes 5 (2006) 19-36. Liu, M. & Braine, G. (2005) Cohesive features in argumentative writing produced by Chinese undergraduates. English for specific purposes 24 (2005) Rowley-Jolivet, E. & Carter-Thomas, S. (2005) Genre awareness and rhetorical appropriacy: Manipulation of information structure by NS and NNS scientists in the international conference setting. System 33 (2005) 41-64. Swales, J.M.. and Feak, C.B. (2004) Academic writing for graduate students: essential tasks and skills (2nd ed.). University of Michigan Press. Swales, J.M.. and Feak, C.B. (2001) English in Today's Research World: A Writing Guide . University of Michigan Press.
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