Beliefs on writer identity in academic writing: a case study of Ukrainian and Austrian university students

Inna Livytska, Volodymyr Vynnychenko State Pedagogical University, Ukraine, ID LLCE2018-373;     Abstract: To become a successful participant in the academic community, students must learn the norms, standards, procedures, and linguistic forms that constitute academic discourse. However, it is rare for a discipline’s expectations and requirements to be overtly discussed or taught, although the research has demonstrated that there is a persistent gap between a staff and student expectations and standards in this domain. In this article, we focus on academic writing, one component of academic discourse. Furthermore, we consider students’ knowledge, skills, and related affect) on S/FL English language and literature students’ (self-reported) knowledge of what constitutes academic writing and writer identity, their comfort discussing it, and the role this has in their perceptions of themselves as writers.

Distinction between “declarative” and “procedural” knowledge, /re/confirmed by the analytic review of relevant research resulted in the following conclusions: 1) EFL/L2 students are generally not aware of the genre aspect of the L2 writing; instead they tend to consider their level of the English language grammatical and lexical competence (linguistic skill) as a prerequisite of their English writing ability; 2) L2/EFL students’ performance of the written tasks demands higher order cognitive skills and rhetorical patterns, considerably different from their native language (L1), that causes considerable constraints in accessing “short-term working memory” information and leads to writing as a “knowledge telling” process, prevents them from fully controlling their writing and forming their academic writer identity (Ivanic, Clark&Rimmershow 2000).

Key words: academic discourse, writer identity, beliefs, cognitive skills, rhetoric patterns.

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