Session 1 – Friday April 7th 3:10-3:40

Session 1A

Interpretations and implications of research findings on contrastive Chinese-English academic writing in English

Sheena Gardner and Chao Han

Summary

Following a meta-analysis of studies and gaps in research that compares the writing of Chinese and English speakers using the BAWE corpus of university student writing, the specific findings will be examined to explore a) how they are interpreted, and b) implications for teaching EAP.

Bios

Sheena GARDNER is Professor of Applied Linguistics in the School of Humanities, Coventry University, where she teaches postgraduate courses in TEAP. Her research and supervision centre on academic genres and registers in the BAWE corpus of university student writing, and transfer of learning from EAP to Disciplinary contexts.

Chao HAN (MSc TESOL, University of Bristol) is a 3rd year PhD student supervised by Sheena Gardner and Hilary Nesi at Coventry University. He created the Han CH-EN corpus, a matched Chinese-English subset of the BAWE corpus, to investigate transition markers as metadiscourse in academic writing and EAP.

Session 1B

Essays with benefits: undergraduate collaborative writing

Peter Levrai and Averil Bolster

Summary

We will examine how collaborative writing in the form of a group essay is used in an undergraduate EAP programme. We will describe the pitfalls and benefits of group essay writing and share a framework to scaffold the writing process for students who are novices in essay writing and teamwork.

Bios

Peter Levrai has been teaching EFL/ESL since 1995 in a wide variety of contexts, including business, technical, exam preparation and EAP. He is currently working in the University of Macau and has a keen interest in developing bespoke training materials and courses to meet specific needs.

With a teaching career of over 20 years, Averil Bolster has worked in many different contexts, from language schools to corporations to universities and has also delivered management training for the IDLTM and DELTA. At present she is working responsible for developing the EAP programme in the University of Macau.

Session 1C

Improving the Quality and Consistency of EAP Assessment through Inter-University Collaboration

Samuel Barclay

Summary
This presentation discusses the attempts of a department to meet the standards of good practice for language testing. It introduces an academic reading test and describes how inter-university collaboration helped the design. This presentation also calls for greater collaboration between universities to ensure that in-house tests are fit for purpose.

Bio

Samuel Barclay is a lecturer at Nottingham Trent University where he is a member of the PEAP management team. His research interests include second language vocabulary acquisition and instruction, and curriculum and assessment design.

Session 1D

‘There’s a disease, and it’s called Goldsmiths’

Gary Riley-Jones

Summary

Contextualising language through subject-specific texts remains relatively uncommon. The result is a lack of engagement with the epistemologies of the disciplines, compounded by lack of awareness of our epistemological foundations. Focusing on ‘critical thinking’, I discuss this position, how criticality is understood within Goldsmiths’ Art Department, and implications for EAP.

Bio

Gary is a Senior Lecturer in EAP at Goldsmiths, and an EdD student at UCL Institute of Education. His thesis is concerned with what it means to be critical in Fine Art and how students, and especially international students, respond to this understanding of criticality within the context of EAP.

Session 1E

‘Job Talk’ – designing a module to help international students respond effectively to the demands of current recruitment methods

Adam Wattam and Hansa Bissoondeeal

Summary

At Essex, through collaboration with Employability colleagues and a Maths & Statistics tutor, we have devised a module that aims to enhance the job-seeking skills and opportunities of international students. This paper outlines how we incorporated behavioural competencies, numeracy testing and effective CV and personal statement writing in our module.

Bios

Adam is a Tutor in EAP and Academic Skills at the University of Essex. He has a particular interest in materials design and language testing. Previous experience includes teaching and teaching centre management in various British Council centres overseas.

Hansa delivers 1:1 support and teaches numeracy for academic study modules at Essex. She also runs numerical test workshops with the Employability and Careers Centre. Before joining the Talent Development Centre, Hansa was a Lecturer in Economics at the Universities of Essex and Mauritius.

Session 1F (BALEAP Dissertation Award Winner)

Critical Thinking and EAP writing

Eilidh Webster

Summary

This study investigated how EAP students and teachers perceive critical thinking and which instructional practices appear to be effective in teaching critical thinking and writing through conducting a meta-synthesis of previous empirical research. The findings point to the importance of content-based instruction and collaborative practices in teaching critical thinking.

Bio

Eilidh Webster is an Academic English tutor at Holland International Study Centre, based in Amsterdam. She holds an MEd in TESOL from the University of Glasgow. Academic interests include critical thinking and incorporating technology into the classroom.

Session 1G

The uses of literature in three academic disciplines

Ted Colclough, Jeni Driscoll and Anna Fox

Summary

A report on collaborations with academics in Finance, Engineering and Architecture and examination of published texts undertaken to explore disciplinary differences in the uses of literature in academic writing. Consideration will be given to how the findings can be used to inform the development of more nuanced discipline-specific EAP materials.

Bios

Ted Colclough is In-sessional English (ISE) Director at the English Language Centre, University of Liverpool. Anna Fox is In-sessional English Coordinator and Jeni Driscoll an In-sessional tutor. All three have been centrally involved in the introduction and development of discipline specific ISE at Liverpool since 2002.

Session 1H

Just Ask: Building Bridges between Students and the University of Bristol

Just Ask team

Summary

Just Ask is a friendly, informal one-stop shop for students at the University of Bristol, which specialises in academic advice and making university processes and regulations more accessible to students. Just Ask provides advice and information on issues such as plagiarism, appeals, complaints, changing courses and extenuating circumstances (among others). This presentation will look at similarities and differences between questions asked by home and international students and examine Just Ask’s role in building bridges between students and the university.

Session 1I (Workshop – double session)

EThOS for EAP: The PhD Abstracts Collections in FLAX with the British Library Electronic Thesis Online Service

Alannah Fitzgerald, Chris Mansfield and Shaoqun Wu

Summary

This workshop will showcase the PhD Abstracts Collections from the FLAX project (Flexible Language Acquisition flax.nzdl.org) and the Electronic Theses Online Service (EThOS) at the British Library. These collections were developed for uptake in English for Specific Academic Purposes programmes and evaluated by learners at Queen Mary University of London.

Wi-fi enabled devices suggested.

Bios

Alannah Fitzgerald is an open education practitioner and researcher. She is responsible for co-creating and investigating academic English language corpora in FLAX: the Law Collections, the BAWE Collections and the PhD Abstracts Collections. Her research interests include Open Education, Open Access, Open Data-Driven Learning, Non-Formal (MOOCs) and Informal Online Learning

Chris Mansfield is an English language and academic writing tutor at Queen Mary University of London. He teaches English for both general and specific academic purposes (EGAP and ESAP) and is involved in the design and provision of literacy support and development for QMUL students. Chris has worked at QMUL for ten years and has also worked on academic literacy and writing development in English with students and researchers from SOAS; UCL; Middlesex University; The University of the Arts London; Freie Universität, Berlin and Akademie Ved (theCzech Academy of Sciences), Prague.

Shaoqun Wu is a lecturer with the Computer Science Department at the University of Waikato in New Zealand, and is the main researcher of the FLAX language project. Her research interests include Computer Assisted Language Learning, Supporting Language Learning in MOOCs, Digital Libraries, Natural Language Processing and Computer Science education.

Session 1J (Workshop – double session)

A Student Magazine project: A Key for Many Doors.

Jane Sjoberg and Sean Gardner

Summary

Magazine projects can enrich the international student experience, but their greatest value may lie elsewhere. Drawing on the experience of former and current students, this workshop will illustrate the benefits of a collaborative magazine project in terms learner autonomy and transferable skills and guide participants towards setting up a magazine project in their own context.

Bios

With over 50 years’ teaching experience between them, Jane Sjoberg and Sean Gardner teach and develop materials in EAP from foundation to postgraduate levels at the University of Birmingham’s International Academy.