Matching Items (5)

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A community of second language writing at Arizona State University: an institutional ethnography

Description

This project is an institutional ethnography (Smith, 2005, 2006) that examines the lived experiences of nine second language (L2) writing teachers, specifically with regard to the interpersonal, material, and spatial

This project is an institutional ethnography (Smith, 2005, 2006) that examines the lived experiences of nine second language (L2) writing teachers, specifically with regard to the interpersonal, material, and spatial relationships inherent in their work. Using interviews, focus groups, and a mapping heuristic for data collection, the study investigates the current culture of L2 writing that is (or is not) created within this specialized community of practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991) and the individual participant motivations as actors within a complex and dynamic network (Latour, 2007). Because findings from the study are relevant for a variety of fields and audiences, the dissertation is separated into three freestanding but interrelated articles.

Article one focuses on the data of one participant whose teaching roles/ranks in the writing program shifted over time: from graduate teaching associate to part-time adjunct faculty member to full-time non-tenure track writing instructor. Article two uses all nine participants’ data and focuses on their perceptions of and experiences with L2-specific teacher training. Results share the perceived benefits and drawbacks of teacher training to specialize in working with multilingual student populations considering various material conditions present in the institution. In addition, the article locates additional programmatic spaces where professionalization happens (or can happen), and ultimately assesses and questions the justification of specialization of teachers within the writing program and where that specialization can/should occur. Article three reflects on a specific data collection technique—a mapping heuristic—and discusses the ways in which this method is beneficial, not only for observing the different connections that L2 writing teachers create in their work lives, but also for collecting data in any institutional ethnographic study.

While these three articles are intended to be independent of one another, together they comprise a dissertation-length institutional ethnographic inquiry that demonstrates the diverse voices, motivations, and experiences of second language writing teachers that inform the decisions made in an institution known as a writing program. WPAs can use the knowledge and takeaways gained in the study to learn more about how to support and advocate for this important stakeholder group.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Speech Acts, Syntax, Conversation Sequences, Discourse: An Interdisciplinary Analysis of Discourse Markers, with an Emphasis on "Oh"

Description

This study explores the topic of Discourse Markers from an Interdisciplinary perspective. Applying the frameworks of Speech Act Theory, Syntax, Conversation Analysis, and Discourse Analysis, to empirical data, it answers

This study explores the topic of Discourse Markers from an Interdisciplinary perspective. Applying the frameworks of Speech Act Theory, Syntax, Conversation Analysis, and Discourse Analysis, to empirical data, it answers the following important questions. What specific types of Speech Actions are performed in everyday Utterances? What Syntactic Mood & Clause Type is used to perform the various Speech Actions? What Discourse Markers occur in the Left-Periphery of the Clause? What Meaning-Functions do Discourse Markers perform? What interactions do Discourse Markers have with the various types of Speech Actions and with the Clause Type with which they are expressed? The results of this study contributed valuable insights to each of the aforementioned fields individually, as well as to the study of human language in general. Among these contributions are the following: Searle’s Taxonomy of Speech Acts was refined by dividing Representatives into Informing and Opinionating and Directives were divided into Commanding and Inquiring. The frequencies of the various Speech Acts relative to each other was identified. Furthermore, 79 distinct and specific Speech Actions were identified. The Speech Act type as well as the Clause Types with which they are expressed were identified. Among the many insights with respect to the interactions between the Speech Action Types and the Clause types with which they are expressed were each of the major Clause Types perform many different Speech Actions that are in addition to those normally attributed to them. Many of the particular Speech Acts are performed via various of the different Clause Types. The Indicative Clause type has the ability to perform most, if not all of the Speech Actions performed by all of the other Clause types. The 200 most frequently-occurring Left-Periphery Elements were identified and observations regarding their Word Class and the Meaning-Functions they perform were identified. The Meaning-Functions of the 10 most frequently-occurring Discourse Markers were identified and defined. The interactions between these Discourse Markers and the Speech Actions to which they attach as well as the Clause Types with which they are expressed were identified, thus documenting empirically that Discourse Markers are intricately connected to the Clause.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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A New Generation of Chinese International Students in the United States and Their Experience in the First-year Composition Classes

Description

The purposes of this dissertation are two-fold. First, it aims to re-examine the new generation of Chinese students in the United States (U.S.) in light of the changing international and

The purposes of this dissertation are two-fold. First, it aims to re-examine the new generation of Chinese students in the United States (U.S.) in light of the changing international and educational contexts. Second, the dissertation seeks to understand the new generation of Chinese students’ experience in First-year Composition (FYC) classes in a public U.S. university. A model of dynamic sociocultural approach is developed and applied to explore this new generation of Chinese students. Compared to previous generations of overseas students, the new generation is substantially different in their backgrounds and shares their own unique characteristics. Taking a sociocultural approach, this dissertation undertakes a systematic examination to delineate Chinese overseas students’ demographic trends over time, the backgrounds and characteristics of the new generation, the motivations for them studying in the United States, and the pathways these students take to come to the U.S. universities. Furthermore, this dissertation explores the experiences of 23 Chinese undergraduate student participants in FYC classes at a U.S. university. In the past decade, with a soaring number of Chinese undergraduate students, there is a dramatic rise in the number of Chinese students in FYC classes. Compared with their previous English education and learning experience in China, what these Chinese undergraduates are experiencing and how them adapting to in their FYC classes will shed light to better understanding of this new generation, as well as how their previous educational experience in China overlap, facilitate, or collide with their current studying in the United States. This dissertation enriches the literature on understanding the new generation of Chinese students, their background, and their adjustments to foreign countries and new educational environments. Using the dynamic sociocultural approach, the study provides teachers and administrators an approach for viewing Chinese and other second language (L2) students in a more holistic way. To a greater extent, the study has implications on how to meet the challenges of diversity in our universities and how to help students with different home cultural backgrounds to succeed in class. The results can also be used to improve the services and programs in the U.S. higher education institutions.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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Understanding “Fairness” in India: Critically Investigating Selected Commercial Videos for Men’s Skin-Lightening Products

Description

This dissertation investigates a subtle yet complex contemporary issue of colorism in India that traces its ideological roots back in the British colonial period or even prior to that. It

This dissertation investigates a subtle yet complex contemporary issue of colorism in India that traces its ideological roots back in the British colonial period or even prior to that. It focuses on the issue of skin-color discrimination in urban Indian men, which is significantly under-researched. This project aims at investigating the issue of skin-color discrimination through analyzing a small corpus of thirteen YouTube commercials dating from 2005 to 2017 for men’s skin-lightening products of a popular skin-care brand called “Fair and Handsome” from a multimodal critical discourse analytic perspective. This study further aims to understand how the discourse of colorism is operating in these Indian commercials for men’s skin-lightening products, what kinds of semiotic and socio-cultural (discourse) elements are naturalizing the notion of “fairness,” and finally, how the construction of male gender is facilitated. Although the project’s main theoretical arc is critical discourse analysis (CDA), the methodological needs necessarily require drawing upon theoretical tools from advertisement analysis, multimodal analysis, gender studies, social psychology, history, cultural anthropology, race theory, and other related fields of study. After successfully facilitating an exhaustive analytical undertaking, this dissertation contributes to the understanding of colorism as more than intra-group racism in India and situates this perpetuating issue as a contemporary research target in the socio-cultural contexts of globalization and urbanization.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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The Stretch Model: including L2 student voices

Description

The Stretch Model is a model of first year composition (FYC) that “stretches” the first semester's class over two semesters in order to help writing students who arrive at university

The Stretch Model is a model of first year composition (FYC) that “stretches” the first semester's class over two semesters in order to help writing students who arrive at university with low test scores to succeed in their composition courses. Originally piloted in 1994 at Arizona State University (ASU), the Stretch Model of composition has been found to be effective in terms of retention and persistence of first language (L1) writers (e.g., Glau, 1996; 2007). It has become known at ASU and abroad as the Stretch Program. Since 1997, a separate track of the Stretch Program has been solely for second language (L2) writers, and L2 writing students are now roughly 17% of the program's population. Until fairly recently, there was no attempt to collect L2 data to support the Stretch Program's claims for effectiveness for the L2 population. As many universities across the nation have garnered inspiration for their own programs ("Stretch Award" 2016), and L2 writers have the potential to be in any composition class (Matsuda, Saenkhum, & Accardi, 2013), it is imperative to include the voices of L2 writers in the analysis of the Stretch Program. This study addresses the need for L2 writers' voices to be included in the analysis of the Stretch Program at Arizona State University. From the quantitative analysis of 64,085 students’ institutional data records, and qualitative analysis of 210 student surveys, findings include L2 writers have the highest rates of passing, but the lowest rates of persistence in the three-semester first year composition requirement when compared to Stretch L1 students and the traditional FYC population. Survey data also lends L2 student perceptions to complicate the main features of the Stretch Program including perceived writing improvement, having the same teacher and classmates for two semesters, and having more time to work on their writing. The quantitative findings are consistent with Snyder’s (2017a) analysis of the 2012 fall Stretch Program L1 and L2 cohorts.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018