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The perceptions and practices of first year students' academic writing at the Colleges of Applied Sciences in Oman

Al-Badwawi, Halima Saleh Qasim (2011) The perceptions and practices of first year students' academic writing at the Colleges of Applied Sciences in Oman. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Abstract

This study is an investigation of students' writing in one college of the Colleges of Applied Sciences (CoAS) in the Sultanate of Oman. The focus of the study was on probing the views and the discursive practices of first year students, their EFL teachers, and disciplinary teachers in relation to academic writing. The aim of the study was to gain an insight into students' experience with the demands of academic writing in the college and the contextual factors that shaped this experience. Recent research has taken a social view to academic writing. Within this movement and theorising writing as a social practice, the present study adopts the academic literacies approach as the general framework for exploring students' experience with writing. The data for the study comes from three main sources: (a) semi-structured interviews with teachers, (b) student focus group interviews, and (c) document analysis. Seven focus group interviews were conducted with first year students. Fifteen interviews were conducted with teachers in the English Language Department, the Communication Department, and the International Business Department. In addition, the Head of the English Language Department in the college and the Director of the English Language Programme at the Ministry of Higher Education were also interviewed. The results suggested that first year students' writing in the context of the study is influenced by several factors that interact together to make students' writing experience a unique and contextually situated phenomenon. These factors are: a) the task requirements, b) the students' learning histories, c) the disciplinary context, and d) the institutional context. Within each of these broad categories, there are also sub-categories that further demonstrate the complexity of students' writing and the multitude of elements that shape students' writing in the college. The thesis concludes by presenting practical and theoretical implications for first year officials, teachers, and course designers based on the findings of the study.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law (Leeds) > School of Education (Leeds)
Depositing User: Repository Administrator
Date Deposited: 21 May 2012 15:04
Last Modified: 07 Mar 2014 11:21
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/2390

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