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Type: Journal article
Title: Embedding publication skills in science research training: a writing group programme based on applied linguistics frameworks and facilitated by a scientist
Author: Cargill, M.
Smernik, R.
Citation: Higher Education Research and Development, 2016; 35(2):229-241
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Issue Date: 2016
ISSN: 0729-4360
Statement of
Margaret Cargill and Ronald Smernik
Abstract: Few systematic efforts have been reported to develop higher degree by research student skills for writing publishable articles in science and technology fields. There is a need to address this lack in the light of the current importance of publication to science research students and the high supervisor workload entailed in repeated draft correction, especially when students use English as an additional language. An interdisciplinary teaching approach to address this need has recently been developed featuring analysis frameworks from applied linguistics (AL) research, with successful outcomes in short, stand-alone workshops facilitated by an applied linguist teaching alone or in teams with scientists. Its use by a scientist alone has not previously been investigated, although scientists are well placed to address this development need. We investigate the suitability and effectiveness of this approach for use by a scientist to embed training, in the context of the first two years of operation of a school-level writing group programme, and identify features of the approach that align with participants’ perceptions of benefit. Student response to the programme has been strongly positive, with increased confidence to write for publication and complete their degrees, and high activity towards publishing papers on their degree research. The presenter reports maintenance of his own publication output in spite of the time spent on this training, as a result of increased writing efficiency. Features of the approach that map to perceived benefit include its basis in AL frameworks for analysis of student-provided example papers; incorporation of relevant aspects of English usage and grammar in the frameworks; and inclusion of response to reviewer comments as an integral part of article writing.
Keywords: Academic publishing; higher degrees by research; institutional embedding; research training; scientific writing; writing for publication; writing groups
Rights: © 2015 HERDSA
DOI: 10.1080/07294360.2015.1087382
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