Chinese Students’ Writing in English: Implications from a by Maria Leedham

By Maria Leedham

Chinese scholars are the biggest foreign pupil staff in united kingdom universities this day, but little is understood approximately their undergraduate writing and the demanding situations they face. Drawing at the British educational Written English corpus - a wide corpus of expert undergraduate scholar writing gathered within the united kingdom within the early 2000s - this learn explores chinese language scholars’ written assignments in English in more than a few collage disciplines, contrasting those with assignments from British scholars. The research is supplemented through questionnaire and interview datasets with self-discipline academics, writing tutors and scholars, and offers a complete photograph of the chinese language pupil author this present day.

Theoretically framed via paintings inside educational literacies and lexical priming, the writer seeks to discover what we all know approximately chinese language scholars’ writing and to increase those findings to undergraduate writing extra in general. In a globalized academic setting, it is necessary for educators to appreciate transformations in writing types around the pupil physique, and to maneuver from the frequent deficit version of pupil writing in the direction of a descriptive version which embraces alternative ways of accomplishing success.

Chinese scholars’ Writing in English should be of price to researchers, EAP tutors, and college academics instructing chinese language scholars within the united kingdom, China, and different English or Chinese-speaking countries.

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While Cantonese, Shanghainese/Wu, Min, Hakka and so on are often termed ‘dialects’ of Chinese, only Mandarin (also known as ‘Modern Standard Chinese’ or ‘Putonghua’) is consistently deemed a ‘language’ by Chinese people due to its link with the ideographic writing system (Gao, 2000). A common writing system is an important unifying feature since it enables communication between people with mutually unintelligible dialects, for example the 56 recognized dialects of the PRC (Hu, 2001) and dialects used beyond the PRC.

Much of this different culture is wrapped up in the Chinese view of the teacher as an authority figure and the desire not to lose ‘face’ and take up class time by asking questions (see, for example, Liu, 2007, for discussion on the concept of ‘willingness to communicate’). While Chinese students in the UK come from a range of different countries, and even within the PRC may have had widely different educational experiences, there are a number of commonalities in their backgrounds; these are considered in the next section.

For example, Chen (2006) compared ten Taiwanese MA dissertations in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) with ten international journal articles, also in TESOL; and Shaw (2009) examined L1 English first-year undergraduate assignments with published articles in literary criticism. Shaw proposes that one reason for the higher use of connecting devices by students over professional researchers is: because the linked propositions are shorter and simpler ideas. The same sort of propositions are connected by the same sort of connectors, but the 32 Contextualizing Chinese students’ learning propositions are better developed in the published essays, so there is more content between the linkers.

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