Language specialists' views on academic language and learning support mechanisms for EAL postgraduate coursework students

the case for adjunct tutorials

Ben Fenton-Smith, Pamela Humphreys

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Large numbers of international students are enrolled in postgraduate coursework degrees in English Medium of Instruction (EMI) destinations such as Australia and the UK (AUSSE Research Briefing, 2011; HEFCE, 2014), most of whom have English as an Additional Language (EAL). However, there is a dearth of literature on the types of academic language and learning (ALL) support that best suit this cohort, and few accounts of sustained strategies implemented specifically for them, particularly university-wide. This paper is an account of one university's attempt to fill this gap in terms of both research and practice. The institution's senior executive commissioned a survey of the views of higher education ALL practitioners across Australia (n = 42) on the potential effectiveness of nine archetypal ALL support mechanisms for postgraduate EAL coursework students. Findings took the form of a quantitative rating of the nine mechanisms as well as qualitative comments on pro and con factors. As the paper describes, this data fed into the formation of an executively mandated academic language enhancement strategy for postgraduate coursework EAL students in the form of a two-year trial of adjunct tutorials within core coursework units.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-55
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of English for Academic Purposes
Volume20
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • academic language and learning (ALL)
  • English as an additional language (EAL)
  • postgraduate
  • support mechanism
  • adjunct tutorial

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