Publication Details

Purser, E. Rose., Skillen, J., Deane, M., Donohue, J. & Peake, K. (2008). Developing academic literacy in context. Zeitschrift Schreiben.

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Zeitschrift Schreiben


Where, when and how (indeed whether) academic writing should be taught to university students, who are not necessarily aiming to study ‹language› per se, has long been a concern in higher education. While students need to develop high level communication skills, in genres often quite specific to higher education, in order that their learning can be assessed, teaching them academic writing during the course of their disciplinary studies raises a number of pedagogical, organisational and research issues. This paper reports on a collaboration between a group of academics in different geographic and institutional locations, who share a dream of improving student learning through curriculum-integrated teaching of writing. Their project has attempted to apply a model of ‹learning development› practice that works well in one arena to a range of new contexts, in order to test its efficacy and transferability. Results indicate that the pedagogical strategies tried (e. g. collaborative, inter-disciplinary design of learning tasks, resources and assessment processes based on analysis of contextually-specific literacy demands) prove ‹true› in various situations, enabling positive changes – in student learning, in the design of curricula, in teachers’ professional development and in general perceptions of the role of language in learning.