Project

Ecologies of genres and ecologies of languages: academics' literacy practices in today's multilingual universities

Goal: The aim of this project is to investigate what genres and languages academics use in their everyday professional practices in the context of internationalization of higher education institutions.

Date: 1 January 2016 - 31 December 2019

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María Ángeles Velilla-Sánchez
added a research item
English is increasingly used as a lingua franca (ELF) for academic activities in Spanish higher education institutions. The notion of ELF is now being redefined including in its conceptualization a multilingual nature of communication (Jenkins, 2015). This conception is interesting for researchers in English-medium instruction (EMI). Therefore, this paper reports on a study which focuses on the multilingual resources most frequently used by higher education lecturers to achieve comprehensibility in EMI courses at the University of Zaragoza. It regards them as part of the pragmatic and strategic behaviour of the participants. The corpus for the study consists of 14 hours of audio-recorded lectures in two different disciplines that have been analysed from a discourse-pragmatic approach, involving both qualitative and quantitative methods. The analysis of the data reveals that lecturers use their multilingual resources, mainly their own first language, as a pragmatic strategy that enables them to achieve various conversational goals such as clarifying meaning.
Rosana Villares
added a research item
https://doi.org/10.3828/ejlp.2021.12 One of the main goals of Spanish higher education is the consolidation of an internationalised university system through international visibility, attractiveness, competitiveness and collaboration. As the literature reports, English plays a relevant role in internationalisation strategies, so this paper examines the relationship between internationalisation and English in institutional documents. Corpus linguistics and critical discourse analysis were used to identify language-related strategies and interpret the language beliefs underlying the promotion of English in the Spanish university context. Results showed that the main language-related strategy was English-medium instruction (EMI) because it promotes the international visibility of universities and helps local students improve their foreign language competence. Measures to support bilingual education were found regarding language training and accreditation. Furthermore, the discourses of globalisation, excellence and employability support the position of English as the international language. Therefore, the introduction of English as another working language in the universities’ linguistic repertoire is widely accepted, although institutional support and constant language training measures are considered essential for the success of internationalisation goals.
Laura Muresan
added a research item
In the introductory chapter, Muresan and Orna-Montesinos provide an overview of the multiple dimensions of academic literacy development, with a focus on its relevance for plurilingual scholars engaged in academic research writing and publishing processes. They situate the ethnographic and pedagogical studies presented in the subsequent chapters within a cognitive/socio-cultural theoretical framework, providing insights into higher education and academic literacy in glocal contexts.
María Ángeles Velilla-Sánchez
added a research item
English is undeniably the lingua franca in many domains, including most academic encounters worldwide. This phenomenon has become a major and expanding field of research within Applied Linguistics. To better understand the dynamics of ELF in academic interactions, there is a need to further investigate ELF usage from its pragmatic perspective in spoken academic genres like lectures. Strategic behaviour involving preparedness for potential disturbance in communication and mutual cooperativeness have proved present in ELF research (e.g. Kaur,2011). In this respect, three different approaches towards the use of pragmatic strategies in communication can be distinguished: i) Strategies used in pre-work/prospective talk ii) Strategies used in post-work/remedial talk (Swales, 2001); iii) Strategies to establish solidarity among the speakers (Cogo, 2009). The present study is based on the analysis of 12 EMI lectures recorded in two degrees at the University of Zaragoza in order to analyse communicativeness at the pragmatic and discourse analysis levels.
Concepción Orna-Montesinos
added a research item
This edited book brings together an international cast of contributors to examine how academic literacy is learned and mastered in different tertiary education settings around the world. Bringing to the fore the value of qualitative enquiry through ethnographic methods, the authors illustrate in-depth descriptions of genre knowledge and academic literacy development in first and second language writing. All of the data presented in the chapters are original, as well as innovative in the field in terms of content and scope, and thought-provoking regarding theoretical, methodological and educational approaches. The contributions are also representative of both novice and advanced academic writing experiences, providing further insights into different stages of academic literacy development throughout the career-span of a researcher. Set against the backdrop of internationalisation trends in Higher Education and the pressure on multilingual academics to publish their research outcomes in English, this volume will be of use to academics and practitioners interested in the fields of Languages for Academic Purposes, Applied Linguistics, Literacy Skills, Genre Analysis and Acquisition and Language Education. Laura-Mihaela Muresan is Professor of English at the Bucharest University of Economic Studies, Romania. Concepción Orna-Montesinos is a Lecturer at Faculty of Education of the University of Zaragoza, Spain.
Rosana Villares
added a research item
This paper examines the extent of linguistic diversity in modern academia, in opposition to the claims of the Englishisation of academia. A questionnaire was distributed to explore language choice in the research-and teaching-oriented practices of Spanish scholars. Results showed the existence of biliteracy practices for research activities, whereas in the case of teaching, Spanish was reported as the dominant language, followed tentatively by English. Findings are discussed in the light of the nature of the academic practices (production, circulation, and formation), the target audience, and individual traits. The results of the study reflect on the impact of internationalisation and how a feasible language policy can be implemented for the benefit of the university community.
Laura Muresan
added a research item
As shown in a recent comprehensive systematic review (Yemini/ Sagie 2016), the most frequently recurring themes found in the literature on internationalization seem to share a clear focus on teaching, learning and research priorities with the operationalization of English as the language of these knowledge transfer activities in an internationalized higher education environment [...] Given that knowledge transfer is a significant instrument of social change, the objective of this chapter is to contribute to understanding how academics perceive the impact of internationalization on the three dimensions of the first overarching group of themes, that is, the triangle of teaching, learning and research activities. This is a salient and still under-researched aspect. Therefore, gaining insights into internationalization processes at grassroots level could inform future policy-making, institution-level decision-taking, and research on higher education management. We conducted semi-structured interviews with academics at one institution engaged in the process of internationalization to inquire into the following aspects: (i) What are the main features that faculty associate with internationalization? (ii) What internationalization-related activities do faculty observe occurring at their university? (iii) Are these linked to any major concerns about the impact of internationalization on teaching, learning and research activities? These three aspects were the main focus of the interviews and are discussed in the chapter in light of the respondents’ perception of opportunities and challenges related to internationalization, as well as its impact on the triangle teaching–learning–research. In examining faculty views at one institution only, it is not possible to generalise the findings; however, we hope that they can shed light on the complexity of multi-layered internationalization endeavours.
Laura Muresan
added 2 research items
The pressure on multilingual scholars to disseminate research outcomes through the medium of English has generated the need for programs which prepare them to perform at internationally accepted standards. The task of helping researchers refine their academic literacies entails new responsibilities for language professionals in university departments. This chapter will explore the new roles taken on by English for Specific Purposes (ESP) professionals in Romania within the framework of an MA program designed to enhance communication and research competences of faculty in economics and business. The methodological approach adopted in this study comprises narratives and field notes provided by ESP professionals involved in setting up and delivering the MA program. The findings suggest that responding to the needs of a demanding teaching situation and engaging in interdisciplinary interactions provide both challenges and professional development opportunities for language teaching academics.
Set against the background of research into peer reviewing as an essential component in the research publishing process, this study goes beyond the realm of Anglophone publishing and brings in the multilingual dimension. A corpus of review forms and other relevant documents and information sources derived from five multilingual journals has been compiled and analysed in order to explore how journal requirements and editor guidelines and expectations contribute to mapping out peer reviewing as a genre. This analysis has revealed both commonality of approach in key areas, reflecting international standardization tendencies, and slight differences, especially at the level of detail, reflecting dynamism in the evolution of this "occluded genre". The final part includes examples of multilingualism in action in this scholarly domain and discusses some of the implications for reviewers.
Rosana Villares
added a research item
https://zaguan.unizar.es/record/89284# || In delving into the context of globalising trends and neoliberal educational policies, this PhD thesis aims to explore how the discourse of internationalisation, which is considered to be a direct consequence of globalisation, is constructed in top-down policies of universities. In particular, this study sought to identify and critically discuss the challenges and implications that English and other languages bring to the internationalisation process of predominantly monolingual institutions. The methodology used in the study drew on a mixed methods approach that combined quantitative corpus linguistics techniques with qualitative enquiry, namely, Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA). Both approaches were applied to a corpus of internationalisation and language policy documents organised into three main layers: the macro-level of European and national policies, the meso-level of institutional strategic documents from Spanish universities, and the micro-level, encompassing the internationalisation plan and language policy documents of a case study, the University of Zaragoza, a medium-sized primarily monolingual university in Spain. In general, the main findings of this study showed that the implementation of internationalisation is done through a combination of internationalisation abroad strategies, namely, mobility, as well as an approach to internationalisation at home in teaching activities in English. The findings showed that languages lie at the core of the internationalisation agenda of universities, thus supporting the previous claims of the literature on the ‘Englishisation’ of higher education. Turning to language policy, a two-fold mission was encountered in the documents. On the one hand, English was associated with international visibility and considered a tool to attract international audiences. On the other hand, there was a maintenance stance for the local languages and commitment towards the acquisition of multilingual language competence, which calls for language management and language planning. Supporting the existing literature on internationalisation studies and language policy in Higher Education, it is concluded that top-down support and written plans are crucial for the success of institutional objectives. According to this PhD study findings, a well-articulated strategy and strong support services are essential to foster all stakeholders’ engagement in internationalisation and language-related initiatives.
Ana Bocanegra-Valle
added a research item
This chapter introduces the capabilities of computer- assisted qualitative data analysis software (CAQDAS) and investigates the advantages of using two particular packages like ATLAS.ti and NVivo for the analysis of qualitative data in the language-, genre-, and discourse-related studies featuring in academic settings. It then explores and discusses scholarly articles in the field of English for specific and academic purposes that were published in five renowned journals and employed these two software packages. The analysis of these studies contributes to mapping the main features of computer- assisted qualitative research in the field and reveals that the research of the language, discourse, and genres that occur in academic settings can be efficiently supported and successfully enhanced by current software.
Rosana Villares
added a research item
Using corpus methods, this study explores the role of Language Policy (LP) documents in the internationalisation process of Spanish universities. It aims at understanding how non-Anglophone universities integrate English and local languages in the functions of education, research, and administration. Content analysis was used for the identification of key themes, and discourse analysis examined how those themes were textually expressed. Consistent with previous literature, this study shows that relevant strategic areas of LP deal with training, regulation, accreditation, and support measures. Results also highlight the role played by institutions in LP and the presence of language hierarchies between English and local languages. The discussion of these findings leads to further inquiry of mismatches between top-down institutional expectations and bottom-up realities regarding the design and implementation of institutional policies.
María José Luzón
added a research item
The Internet provides researchers with tools to disseminate their research findings to different audiences and meet the information needs of various publics. One of these tools is online science videos, which can be addressed to audiences with different degrees of expertise and shared on various platforms. The current study analyzes a set of online videos used by research groups to inform about their research and findings and engage the audience with this research. My purpose is to analyze how multimodal strategies are used in these videos to recontextualize knowledge for a wide audience. The analysis reveals four types of strategies, which may be performed through the orchestration of various semiotic modes: (i) strategies to construct the research group’s credibility and authority; (ii) strategies to construct persuasive arguments; (iii) strategies to tailor information to the assumed knowledge of potential viewers; (iv) strategies to bond with the viewers and engage them.
Laura Muresan
added a research item
This chapter focuses on the new roles language teachers have taken on in a university context, where English, German, French are used as lingua francas for multiple academic purposes. The framework for the study is provided by the new developments initiated at the Bucharest University of Economic Studies, such as the internationalisation agenda and the introduction of new study programmes, e.g. Applied Modern Languages at undergraduate level, the English medium Teacher and Researcher Development master’s programme (EDU-RES), the English Medium Instruction (EMI) language training. The participants in the EDU-RES master’s programme and the EMI-related training are peer-academics teaching and carrying out research mainly in economics and business-related specialisations. This study aims to explore changes in language teacher roles in our higher education environment, as perceived by the teachers themselves. A further research aim is to identify relevant aspects of the interaction between language teachers and content teachers, as encapsulated in their reflections on their academic activities and professional development processes.
Laura Muresan
added an update
  • Authors: Valentina Robu & Laura-Mihaela Muresan
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-93329-0_15
  • In book: Foreign Language Teaching in Romanian Higher Education
 
Laura Muresan
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The widespread use of English in academia has been reported to have detrimental effects on other academic languages and to pose considerable language problems to those scholars that use English as an Additional Language. This paper, however, seeks to bring into focus the functionality of English along with that of other academic languages for campus-wide internationalization. Using data from semi-structured interviews with university faculty, the paper examines the plurilingual practices of a localized disciplinary community in a non-Anglophone academic setting. The data show that while several causal and intervening conditions promote English in the domain of research communication, context-specific factors support the use of Spanish in the domain of education. Regarding the spoken mode, faculty accounts of language-related phenomena (language mixing, translanguaging and parallel language use) reveal complex multilingual interactions. Furthermore, their accounts of informal academic interactions and of features of English as a Lingua Franca confirm that they communicate effectively in English with other academics even if their English does not fully conform to the English Native Language norms. Given that macro-level (institutional) language policies have a dramatic impact on language practices, we advocate effective language planning and management to preserve and enhance plurilingualism on campus.
María José Luzón
added a research item
Blogs provide an open space for research groups to publicise their research and activities, become more visible both to the local and international disciplinary communities, and conduct self-promotion. Research groups harness the affordances of the medium to weave a narrative about the group, presented through various modalities, and thus construct their online identity. The purpose of this research is to analyse how identity is constructed in research group blogs written in English by groups affiliated to Spanish institutions. In this study I address the following questions: (i) which are the facets of the group's identities created by multilingual scholars in research group blogs?; (ii) which textual and multimodal practices are adopted by researchers to construct the group's identity? To answer these questions I conducted a content analysis (focusing on written language, visuals, hyperlinks) of posts taken from 12 research group blogs. The study provides insight on how these research groups mesh different semiotic modes in their blogs to project a multifaceted identity and reveals that blogging may be a powerful instrument for research groups' identity performance and visibility.
María Ángeles Velilla-Sánchez
added 2 research items
As a result of the thriving process of internationalization that many Spanish Universities are undergoing, there is a recent interest in offering English as medium of instruction courses, English being adopted as the common language of choice for academic activities. In this paper I present the preliminary results of research analyzing the pragmatic strategies used by Higher education lecturers in EMI courses in a Spanish university. The corpus for the study consists in 14 hours of lectures in two different disciplines (Business Administration and Nanoscience). The analysis of the data reveals that most of the pragmatic strategies used to pre-empt potential communicative breakdowns, negotiate, and clarify meaning fall into one of the following groups: (i) use of multilingual resources (e.g. code-switching); (ii) self-repair (iii) reformulation. The results show that participants use these strategies to cope with the heavy investment in the communication process that is required when using a vehicular language different from one’s own in such high-stakes institutional academic settings. Keywords: English as a lingua franca (ELF), English as a medium of instruction (EMI), pragmatic strategies, communicativeness.
English as a medium of instruction (EMI) is an increasingly global phenomenon. There seems to be a change, in non Anglophone countries, from English being taught as a foreign language (EFL) to English being the medium of instruction for many academic subjects. At University level, in Spain, the increase in the provision of courses in English is largely considered essential if Spanish universities are to compete for international students, as English is considered a fundamental skill for mobility and employability. The University of Zaragoza, like most universities in Spain, is also facing the challenges for this internationalization agenda. The study takes a post-normative approach in which second language users of English, or rather users of English as a lingua franca, are seen as successful communicators within their disciplinary domains, rather than ”deficient native speakers”. For the EMI practices, 18 lectures from disciplines within Social Sciences, Humanities and Natural Sciences (6 from each group) were collected as raw data for their observation and interpretation. Qualitative Content Analysis for the purposes of coding (Schrier 2012) plus Discourse Analysis were used. This paper will report the findings of a study on the policies and practices of EMI in the University of Zaragoza, which are drawn from a small scale corpus of lectures in three above-mentioned areas. The lecturers and students who operate in these English-medium instruction programs all use English as a lingua franca. The focus of this paper is on the role played by pragmatic strategies in ELF lecturing.
Concepción Orna-Montesinos
added a research item
Ensuring linguistic operability in supranational organizations has led to the de facto imposition of an English-only policy in otherwise lingua-culturally diverse environments. This paper uses a combination of a literature review of military-related language policy documents and semi-structured interviews to explore the impact of those policies on the use of English as the working language of a professional context, the Spanish military. Broadly, the findings show that the standardization of linguistic certification procedures, a requirement for their participation in international operations, places these professionals in a disadvantage scenario in which lack of linguistic proficiency translates into the questioning of their personal, professional and institutional validity. The analysis of Spanish soldiers’ perceptions and attitudes helped to shed light on the conflicting interaction of language policies, practices and beliefs. Although English is valued as the language of work and therefore as a vehicle for interaction with other armies, for socialization or for contact with the local population, it is nonetheless viewed as an imposition of the globalized world, accepted with pragmatic and instrumental criteria, which entails the requirement of language certification standards they struggle to meet.
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As part of the project Ecologies of genres and ecologies of languages, M José Luzón and Carmen Pérez-Llantada are currently working on a book proposal that takes as a point of departure the claim that the unique technological affordances of new media are revolutionizing the ways in which researchers create, represent, re-use and share information and knowledge. The book thus attempts to give a comprehensive understanding of the different ways in which digital genres are related to and interact with other genres used by a community. The different chapters will explore digital genres for science exchange and dissemination focusing on their relation with other genres used within and across disciplinary communities as well as their communicative functions in the existing repertoires of genres of these communities.
We will keep on posting updates of this exciting (and, surely, truly inspiring) book proposal as well as of its excellent list of contributors!
M José Luzón & Carmen Pérez-Llantada
 
Ana Bocanegra-Valle
added a research item
This paper draws on two policy documents, the “International Campus of Excellence Initiative” and the “University Strategy 2010-2015” to assess the level of internationalisation of the Spanish university system as portrayed by the international campuses of excellence (ICEs). It sets out to identify the role and use of English as a lingua franca with academic purposes across Spanish ICEs and the initiatives developed based on the use of English as a communication tool in this academic context. The investigation draws on textual data gathered from the websites of two Spanish-based ICEs, such as Ceimar (ICE on Marine Science) and Iberus (ICE of the Ebro Valley). The website analysis shows that these two ICEs rely on English to implement issues of internationality in their academic offer and articulate a diversity of actions and programmes in which English is used as the lingua franca for international communication and academic teaching as well as for the dissemination of research activities.
Laura Muresan
added a research item
Student evaluation is a structural element in monitoring the quality of MA programmes. Evaluation can have a summative character if carried out at the end of a module or of the whole programme. When carried out during the course of the programme, evaluation is more formative in character and intended to monitor student progress on the one hand and to adjust the programme (to the extent it is possible) to the students’ perceived needs on the other. Our presentation will focus on formative evaluation of the MA programme “Research and Teacher Education for Business and Economics” (EDU-RES) run by the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest as a staff development programme. We will discuss the data obtained through individual interviews carried out at the end of the first year and will highlight issues related to student progress as well as issues that tutors can build on in the attempt to improve programme quality. Apart from compliance to standards, quality is also a matter of perception and the students’ perspective needs to be taken into account particularly in the case of internationalized programmes. http://www.aracis.ro/fileadmin/ARACIS/Revista_QAR/Aprilie_2012/Articolul_2.pdf
María José Luzón
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Although scientific research has always been a social activity, in recent years the adoption of Internet-based communication tools by researchers (e.g., e-mail, electronic discussion boards, electronic mailing lists, videoconferencing, weblogs) has led to profound changes in social interaction and collaboration among them. Research suggests that Internet technologies can improve and increase communication among noncollocated researchers, increase the size of work groups, increase equality of access to information by helping to integrate disadvantaged and less established researchers, help to coordinate work more efficiently, help to exchange documents and information quickly (Carley & Wendt, 1991; Nentwich, 2003). There is abundant research on new forms of group work originated from the use of computer technologies. Carley and Wendt (1991) use the term extended research group to refer to very large, cohesive, and highly cooperative research groups that, even being geographically dispersed, are coordinated under the supervision of a single director. The term collaboratory is also used to refer to similar groups (Finholt, 2002). Although there is much research on how Internet technologies are used by unified and cohesive work groups to collaborate (e.g., Moon & Sproull, 2002; Walsh & Maloney, 2002), less attention has been paid to how the Internet facilitates collaboration among researchers outside these highly cohesive groups. Weblogs (blogs) can become a useful tool for this type of collaboration and for the creation of virtual groups. Weblogs are frequently updated Web pages, consisting of many relatively short postings, organized in reverse chronological order, which tend to include the date, and a comment button so that readers can answer (Herring, Scheidt, Bonus, & Wright, 2004). They enable users to communicate with a worldwide nonrestricted community of people in similar fields, which leads to several forms of collaboration. The purpose of this article is to present a brief overview of the uses of weblogs as tools for research e-collaboration. Purchase this chapter to continue reading all 8 pages >
Laura Muresan
added 6 research items
A survey of the many English academic style manuals on the market (Bennett 2009) has shown a remarkable consistency across disciplines and genres as to the qualities required in English Academic Discourse. These include characteristics such as clarity, economy and precision; an emphasis upon rational argument supported by evidence, with an avoidance of ‘dubious' persuasive techniques; and a general restraint with regards to claims made. This contrasts sharply with the traditional scholarly discourse of the Romance cultures (Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, French and Romanian), which is characterised by a taste for ‘copiousness’, manifested by a wordiness and redundancy; a preference for a high-flown erudite register (including complex syntax, lexical abstraction, etc); a propensity for indirectness (the main idea is often embedded, deferred or adorned at all ranks); and the extensive use of figurative language and other forms of subjectivity. This paper looks in more detail at these differences from the point of view of the translator, editor, writing instructor or non-native English speaker (NNES) author. A contrastive approach is used to suggest ways in which some of the more intransigent problems might be overcome in practice, stimulating discussion about the ethical, ideological and identity issues involved in radical domestication. Keywords: Academic discourse; contrastive rhetoric; English; Romance languages;
While widening participation in research activity seems to feature strongly on the European Union agenda, semiperiphery researchers face serious challenges in their efforts to become recognised members of the international research community. The present study explores the strategies Romanian researchers in the field of economics and business use in the process of familiarising themselves with internationally-accepted research practices and developing their writing expertise. Survey and interview data reveal perceptions about the challenges of writing and publishing in English as well as about refining research writing practices in view of publication in scholarly journals. In addition, analysis of move structure in discussion and conclusions sections of published articles provides a useful parallel between perceived changes and actual text drafting practices. The findings show that while researchers constantly improve their own research communication skills, they expect the support and cooperation of journal reviewers and academic institutions. - http://www.palgrave.com/page/detail/?K=9781137351197
"Learning Organisation" concepts and characteristics are usually associated with specific management systems and approaches to human resources development in companies. The aim of this article is that of exploring to what extent an interdisciplinary research and teacher education Master programme can meet both institutional needs and personal professional interests. The case study analysed here is provided by the Interdisciplinary Master programme "English Language Education and Research Communication in Business and Economics" at The Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies. How are its component elements inter-connected and which of its characteristics are comparable to those of a "learning organisation"? To answer to these questions, reference will be made to various processes and stages within the programme, such as needs analysis, multiple perspective evaluation, including feedback already received on the programme's impact on the institutional environment, a.s.o. - http://www.synergy.ase.ro/synergy-vol-4-no-2-2008.html
María José Luzón
added a research item
Although scientific research has always been a social activity, in recent years the adoption of Internet-based communication tools by researchers (e.g., e-mail, electronic discussion boards, electronic mailing lists, videoconferencing, weblogs) has led to profound changes in social interaction and collaboration among them. Research suggests that Internet technologies can improve and increase communication among noncollocated researchers, increase the size of work groups, increase equality of access to information by helping to integrate disadvantaged and less established researchers, help to coordinate work more efficiently, help to exchange documents and information quickly (Carley & Wendt, 1991; Nentwich, 2003). There is abundant research on new forms of group work originated from the use of computer technologies. Carley and Wendt (1991) use the term extended research group to refer to very large, cohesive, and highly cooperative research groups that, even being geographically dispersed, are coordinated under the supervision of a single director. The term collaboratory is also used to refer to similar groups (Finholt, 2002). Although there is much research on how Internet technologies are used by unified and cohesive work groups to collaborate (e.g., Moon & Sproull, 2002; Walsh & Maloney, 2002), less attention has been paid to how the Internet facilitates collaboration among researchers outside these highly cohesive groups. Weblogs (blogs) can become a useful tool for this type of collaboration and for the creation of virtual groups. Weblogs are frequently updated Web pages, consisting of many relatively short postings, organized in reverse chronological order, which tend to include the date, and a comment button so that readers can answer (Herring, Scheidt, Bonus, & Wright, 2004). They enable users to communicate with a worldwide nonrestricted community of people in similar fields, which leads to several forms of collaboration. The purpose of this article is to present a brief overview of the uses of weblogs as tools for research e-collaboration.
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The Genres and Languages (GLE) project team joined the new PAWBL (Professional academic and work-based literacies) BAAL Special Interest Group in early September and will be presenting their ongoing research on academic writing and literacy development in the first SIG event hosted in Milton Keynes, on Friday December 8th.
Full details of the event can be found at https://pawbl.wordpress.com/events/
 
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Our colleague Prof. Laura Muresan is organizing the International Conference Synergies in Communication (Bucharest, 16 - 17 November 2017) in collaboration with the Department of Modern Languages and Business Communication, the Faculty of International Business and Economics, the Bucharest University of Economic Studies and The Romanian Association for Quality Language Services QUEST.
One of the thematic strands will be devoted to 'languages in the context of internationalization in Higher Education'.
Confirmed Keynote Speakers:
Professor Roswitha Badry, University of Freiburg, Germany
Mr. Michael Carrier, International Association Eaquals, UK
Professor Domnica Rădulescu, Washington and Lee University, Lexington, VA, USA.
Thematic strands:
 Synergies in business communication, education and research
 Interdependences: Quality Assurance, academics’ professional development & internationalisation of Higher Education
 Education through (inter)cultural studies
 East and West within interdisciplinary frames
 European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018
Call for papers still open.
 
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This chapter provides a comprehensive, state of the art overview of the field English for Academic Purposes. Throughout the chapter we also seek to foreground the importance of establishing synergies between the field of English for Academic Purposes and the broad fields of SLA and SLL. We describe the main theoretical trends and pedagogical traditions in EAP teaching and learning and also review a sample of mainstream EAP research that investigates various aspects of second language teaching and learning. In closing, we discuss the value of corpora in formal instructed learning and propose some future research directions.
María José Luzón
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Blogs provide an open space for scholars to share information, communicate about their research, and reach a diversified audience. Posts in academic blogs are usually hybrid texts where various genres are connected and recontextualized; yet little research has examined how these genres function together to support scholars’ activity. The purpose of this article is to analyze how the affordances of new media enable the integration of different genres and different languages in research group blogs written by multilingual scholars and to explore how various genres are coordinated in these blogs to accomplish specific tasks. The study reported in this article shows that the functionalities of the digital medium allow research groups to incorporate myriad genres into their genre ecology and interconnect these genres in opportunistic ways to accomplish complex objectives: specifically, to publicize the group’s research and activities, make the work of the group members available to the disciplinary community, strengthen social links within their community and connect with the interested public, and raise social awareness. Findings from this study provide insights into the ways in which scholars write networked, multimedia, multigenre texts to support the group’s social and work activity.
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This paper focuses on an issue attracting increasing attention: the possible disadvantage inflicted on non-Anglophone academics by the dominance of English in scientific publication and academic exchange. We critically review the evidence for linguistic disadvantage, noting some of its limitations, and critique the native/non-native distinction as a coarse and somewhat unsatisfactory criterion for distinguishing between the advantaged and disadvantaged. In the second part of the paper we report on an empirical survey of the attitudes of Spanish academics at the University of Zaragoza to the possible disadvantage they may experience in publishing in English, and we investigate determinants of these attitudes. Though the survey shows, as expected, that a majority do feel disadvantaged in academic publication relative to Anglophone scholars, it also indicates, we argue, that attitudes are more complex and multidimensional than the literature sometimes suggests. Self-reported language proficiency emerges as a significant determinant of attitudes. The final part of the paper discusses a number of proposed language planning interventions designed to redress linguistic disadvantage. We argue that some of the more radical of these are flawed or unfeasible and suggest that more modest measures have a greater likelihood of ameliorating the situation.
Over the past decade, the use of a shared language in research communication has brought about a rich scholarly debate on the advancement of English as the common language for research publication and dissemination. This paper seeks to further the debate by reporting on the research communication practices and attitudes towards the role of English among social sciences scholars in Romania, a Central-Eastern European context that has received little research attention from this perspective. As a pilot empirical study, we examine a local scholarly community (the Bucharest University of Economic Studies) in which different uses are allocated to English, to the local (national) language and to other foreign languages and, therefore, linguistic imperialism is only a partially but not totally convincing explanatory framework. Our findings further reveal ambivalent attitudes. Although almost half of the subjects feel the dominance of English gives an unfair advantage to English native-speaking academics, almost all acknowledge the need for a shared language of research and personally feel more advantaged in their work by the use of English as a shared research language. We contrast the reported attitudes with other bi-/multiliterate research contexts and suggest policy implications at a university level.
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This volume examines the role of English in academic and research settings in Europe and provides recommendations on the challenges posed by the dominance of English over national languages as languages of science and research dissemination; the need for language support for academics that need to disseminate their research in English; and the effect of past and present language policies.
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Our colleague Ana Bocanegra organizes AESLA 2018 conference. Here's the call for papers http://aesla2018.tucongreso.es/en/presentacion
Congratulations, Ana, for an excellent launch of the event on Applied linguistics and knowledge transfer - employability, internationalization and social challenges
 
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Inspired by the project Ecologies of genres and ecologies of languages, one of our research group members, Dr. Ana Bocanegra, is organizing the following conference. Keeo track of it if you're interested in genres and languages!
36th International AESLA Conference: “Applied Linguistics and knowledge transfer: employability, internationalization and social challenges”. University of Cadiz (SPAIN) 19-21 APRIL 2018
The conference invites contributions that address ways in which Applied Linguistics can enhance economic growth and societal well-being by integrating employability, internationalization and knowledge transfer issues across higher education. It also invites contributions that explore the social challenges which scholars, researchers and students need to address when trying to build successful and sustainable collaboration between universities, business and the public sector in national, transnational and international contexts.
Submissions may be related to the conference main theme or fall within the scope of any of the following thematic panels:
  • Language acquisition
  • Language teaching
  • Language for specific purposes
  • Language psychology, child language and psycholinguistics
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Pragmatics
  • Discourse analysis
  • Corpus linguistics, computational linguistics and linguistic engineering
  • Lexicology and lexicography
  • Translation and interpreting
The working languages for AESLA 2018 are Spanish and English. RELEVANT DATES Abstract submission: from September 10 to November 10, 2017 Notification of acceptance: January 20, 2018
More information: aesla2018@uca.es
 
Rosana Villares
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During the month of June, the University of Zaragoza and our research team organise a seminar session on Internationalisation in higher education and multilingual practices (Buenas prácticas multilingües. Jornada de internacionalización de la educación superior).
Date: 19/06/2017
Place: Sala Pilar Sinués (Paraninfo, Zaragoza)
Registration: registration is free but you will need to register here https://goo.gl/forms/9drewoRsfLbC1TVF2
Programme: see the attached document.
 
Concepción Orna-Montesinos
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The Intercultural communication in the Military volume seeks to provide a resource pack for language learning purposes. Drawing on a needs analysis of the communication practices of the miltiary profession, be book includes resources which address the academic and professional challenge of using English as the international language of professional communication. The design of the resources takes an ESP approach to create language learning materials and tasks which help military learners to develop their intercultural communication competence.
In a global geopolitical scenario Spanish soldiers are faced with the strategic challenge of developing linguistic and intercultural communication competence. This paper provides an account of the design process of military-specific materials which seek to equip these learners to become interculturally competent speakers of English. Drawing on a previous needs analysis of the profession, the design of materials discussed here seeks to integrate an intercultural dimension to an ESP- oriented program for military students. A genre- and task-based approach was adopted with a view to engage military learners in a dual rhetorical and intercultural consciousness raising process which equips them with linguistic and intercultural skills. The goal was to select written and oral texts and to design tasks which foster critical thinking skills acquisition and to promote awareness of intercultural communication challenges. The approach taken lends credence to the view that authentic resources and tasks are loaded with the values of the discipline along with those of the culture it represents. Further, it illustrates how an ESP program can contribute to help learners raise awareness of the linguistic and cultural diversity involved in the use of English as an international language of professional communication in multilingual and multicultural contexts.
Laura Muresan
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Set against the backdrop of an English-medium interdisciplinary masters' in Romania, this paper describes the process of familiarising researchers with the genre specificity of research articles published in English language journals. Building on Swales' genre-based approach to research writing (Swales, 2004; Feak & Swales, 2009), the study includes both methodological aspects of genre-teaching / learning and an analysis of data collected through group discussion, reflecting the views of programme participants. Fully aware that it is too early to draw comprehensive conclusions, the authors hope that by integrating various perspectives, this smallscale research will further document the genre-based approach to research writing and will contribute to refining course design and methodology. http://www.mnlr.ro/ro-dice.html
There is a clear dominance of English as lingua franca in the most cited research journals, as well as in various international communication contexts in academia. This does not mean, however, that high quality university education does not continue to exist and flourish in other languages, including German, French or Spanish as lingua franca. The academic context selected for analysis in this paper is an internationally accredited German MBA programme in Romania, where the dominant medium of tuition is German, with only a few courses taught in English. Academic writing is, thus, mainly in German, and the Master dissertations have to be written in German. The main aims of this small scale study are to explore the features of this multilingual environment, in terms of both challenges and opportunities involved, considering that most of the MBA-students enrolled in the programme have neither English nor German as their mother tongue. Text-based research will be complemented by the outcomes of focus group discussions with students and semi-structured interviews with teachers. The findings are meant to inform future curriculum developments, the 'research writing' module, and interdisciplinary cooperation with and among subject teachers, with a focus on enhancing the quality of student dissertation writing and their academic competences, in general. I. SETTING THE SCENE There is a clear dominance of English in the most cited research journals, as well as in various international communication contexts in academia, using English as lingua franca. This does not mean, however, that high quality university education does not continue to exist and flourish in other languages, including German, French or Spanish, not only as L1, but also as 2nd or 3rd foreign languages for students from all over the world. The current study is set against the backdrop of at least two lingua francas -German and English -in a Romanian Higher Education environment.
Ana Bocanegra-Valle
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This paper explores how intercultural awareness is raised in Maritime English (henceforth, ME) higher education courses and, particularly, how the “intercultural dialogue” (Council of Europe, 2008) is fostered in ME materials. Interculturality and its impact upon the maritime profession is a major concern for the shipping industry as multilingual and multicultural crews prevail aboard ships. Four teaching/learning resources have been targeted: the latest ME textbook (Grice, 2012), a web-based ME learning tool (MarEng, 2007-2010), a recently launched online platform offering ME learning materials (SeaTALK, 2015), and the latest edition of a full Model Course programme on ME (IMO, 2015). The results obtained help to assess if, and to what extent ME language teaching materials serve as “mediators of intercultural communicative competence” (Rico Troncoso, 2012: 130), providers of intercultural awareness, facilitators for intercultural encounters and creators of “spaces for intercultural dialogue” (Council of Europe, 2008: 46). Conclusions are expected to further research into intercultural dialogicity and provide researchers in other languages and ESP fields with guidance for assessing the presence of intercultural-related features in their own course materials.
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This chapter provides a comprehensive, state of the art overview of the field English for Academic Purposes. Throughout the chapter we also seek to foreground the importance of establishing synergies between the field of English for Academic Purposes and the broad fields of SLA and SLL. We describe the main theoretical trends and pedagogical traditions in EAP teaching and learning and also review a sample of mainstream EAP research that investigates various aspects of second language teaching and learning. In closing, we discuss the value of corpora in formal instructed learning and propose some future research directions.
María José Luzón
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An increasing body of research relies on genre to analyze academic and professional communication and to describe how members of a community use language. The purpose of this paper is to provide a review of genre-based research in technical communication and to describe the different approaches to genre and to genre teaching. While some research focuses on the textual analysis of genres, other studies focus on the analysis of the social context and the ideology and structure of the discourse community that owns the genre, and on the role of genres as social rhetorical actions of the community. These two perspectives are also reflected in the teaching of genre in technical communication.
New media are having a significant impact on science communication, both on the way scientists communicate with peers and on the dissemination of science to the lay public. Science blogs, in particular, provide an open space for science communication, where a diverse audience (with different degrees of expertise) may have access to science information intended both for nonspecialist readers and for experts. The purpose of this article is to analyze the strategies used by bloggers to communicate and recontextualize scientific discourse in the realm of science blogs. These strategies involve adjusting information to the readers’ knowledge and information needs, deploying linguistic features typical of personal, informal, and dialogic interaction to create intimacy and proximity, engaging in critical analysis of the recontextualized research and focusing on its relevance, and using explicit and personal expressions of evaluation. The article shows that, given the diverse audience of science posts, bloggers display a blending of discursive practices from different discourses and harness the affordances of new media to achieve their rhetorical purposes.
This volume presents the latest research of an international group of scholars engaged in the analysis of academic discourse from a genre-oriented perspective. The area covered by this volume is a central one, as in the last few years important developments in research on academic discourse have not only concerned the more traditional genres, but, as well, generic innovations promoted by the new technologies, employed both in the presentation of research results and in their dissemination to a wider community by means of popularising and teaching activities. These innovations have not only favoured important changes in existing genres and the creation of new ones to meet emerging needs of the academic community, but have also promoted a serious discussion about the construct of genre itself. The various investigations gathered in this volume provide several examples of the complexity and flexibility of genres, which have shown to be subject to a continuous tension between stability and change as well as between convention and innovation.
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This paper presents a small collection of case reports which seek to explore the rhetorical resources used by native (North-American) and non-native English (Spanish) scholars when publishing research in international journals. The interview protocols enquired into the pressure on scholars to publish internationally, their adherence to rhetorical conventions in the transmission of knowledge, and their awareness of being persuasive when addressing an international readership. Complementing the interview data, textual analysis was used to quantify a sample of linguistic features and interpret them as rhetorical devices that writers use to construct new knowledge, evaluate research processes and highlight research outcomes. Although the two groups of informants made similar observations in the interviews, the textual analysis revealed several intercultural differences as regards the degree of authorial visibility/ invisibility in the texts. While advocating the maintenance of cultural diversity in academic prose, implications of whether non-native English writers should adopt Anglophone conventions or rather retain their culture-specific rhetorical styles when publishing internationally are also discussed.
The abstract for this document is available on CSA Illumina.To view the Abstract, click the Abstract button above the document title.
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This paper is a contribution to an expanding literature on the challenges non-Anglophone academics confront in disseminating their research in English, the dominant language of international scientific communication. Drawing on a corpus of interviews with senior Spanish academics, who remain a relatively little researched academic community compared to many others, we focus on the English language publishing/dissemination practices of our subjects, on their attitudes to the dominance of English, on their perceptions of the most problematic aspects of writing in English, and on their views as to how they might best be supported by their university with regard to their English language needs. The overall aim is to better understand how these academics cope with the challenge of disseminating research in English with a view to formulating the most realistic and most appropriate interventions to support them. Salient among our findings is that subjects report a particular sense of disadvantage in relation to spoken communication at conferences, more so than for academic writing. This, therefore, is a potentially fruitful area for supportive intervention along with others discussed in the conclusion to the paper.
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This article compares the Article of the Future (AofF) prototypes (<http://www.articleofthefuture.com/>) with a corpus of journal articles (Journal Article Corpus – JAC) to demonstrate that the article genre in an online environment is a “stabilised-for-now or stabilised-enough” site for social interaction (Schryer, 1994, p. 108). Results show that the prototypes adhere to the typical structural patterns of the JAC texts, while also embedding discernible structural variations across the disciplinary spectrum. They display generic stability concerning authors’ use of intertextuality for framing their texts in a social/institutional context. Comparison of the AofF with the JAC texts also illustrates a similar lexicogrammatical profile. Consistent with previous literature, recurring bundles in the AofF prototypes are associated with structural elaboration, complexity and a compressed style, and perform referential, text-organising and stance functions in the discourse. Complementing corpus findings, an exploratory survey of authors suggests that their actual text-composing/reading practices of online articles are governed by the long-established communicative purposes of the genre. Findings suggest, though, that the new online part-genres (research highlights, graphical abstracts, interactive graphs, embedded videos, hyperlinks), potential strategies for generic change, might be changing the writers’ perceptions towards online articles. The article concludes with some practical implications for ESP practitioners.
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The aim of this project is to investigate what genres and languages academics use in their everyday professional practices in the context of internationalization of higher education institutions.
 
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This is a competitive research project funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (MINECO) and the European Social Fund (FEDER). We are currently investigating how academics use genres for academic communication in their everyday professional practices. We also investigate how, in using academic genres, scholars make use of one or more academic languages. We seek to understand how ecologies of genres and ecologies of languages are shaped in today’s academic settings in the context of ongoing internationalization processes at universities. How internationalization policies and language policies at universities make these ecologies evolve over time is also one of our main investigative goals.