Academic reflections: disciplinary acculturation and the first-year pathway experience in Australia

Breen, P., Velliaris, D. and Willis, C. 2015. Academic reflections: disciplinary acculturation and the first-year pathway experience in Australia. in: Shrestha, P.N. (ed.) Current developments in English for academic and specific purposes: local innovations and global perspectives Reading, Berkshire Garnet Education.

Chapter titleAcademic reflections: disciplinary acculturation and the first-year pathway experience in Australia
AuthorsBreen, P., Velliaris, D. and Willis, C.
EditorsShrestha, P.N.
Abstract

Although the increasingly multicultural composition of cohorts within Australian Higher Education (HE) campuses has brought much social and financial benefit, the situation remains ‘beset by a number of challenges’ (Bodycott & Walker, 2000, p. 80). Prime among those challenges is the ability of international students to acculturate to norms of Australian HE, which may be characterised as student-centred, self-directed, problem-based, real-world, and peer-assisted. These academic discourse patterns may contradict any expectations previously encountered by international students who often arrive in this new context with ‘misperceptions’ about academic study (Bryson, Hardy, & Hand, 2009, p. 1) and a lack of skills required to make a successful transition (Kantanis, 2000). The challenge of switching between different institutional cultures is accentuated in many cases by students using English as a Second (ESL) or Additional Language (EAL), which carries with it ‘a particular kind of vulnerability’ (Hellsten, 2002, p. 10). Bryson et al., (2009, p. 3) suggested that this whole situation presents both ‘challenges and tensions’.

KeywordsHigher education; disciplinary pathways; English as a Second Language; English for Academic Purposes
Book titleCurrent developments in English for academic and specific purposes: local innovations and global perspectives
Year2015
PublisherGarnet Education
Publication dates
Published31 Mar 2015
Place of publicationReading, Berkshire
ISBN9781782601623

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