Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, Third International Conference on Higher Education Advances

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Pedagogies of Academic Writing in Teacher Education: from Epistemology to Practice and back again
Christian Beighton, Alison Blackman

Last modified: 29-05-2017


TThis paper discusses barriers to the development of academic writing, in the area of teacher education in UK higher education . We first situate these issues in a higher education context increasingly defined by new technologies and diverse cohorts of higher education students. Drawing on empirical data obtained from interviews with both students and teachers (N=21), we then critically examine a range of perspectives on the definition, role and function of academic literacy in this contemporary context. Findings include useful insights into the development of writing skills and teacher identity, but they also reveal fundamental differences in the epistemological presuppositions of those teaching academic writing. These accounts are reflected in significant differences in pedagogy, and raise important questions for practice which, although potentially irresolvable, may help to explain some of the difficulties which emerge when trying to teach academic writing. Such fundamental issues, we argue, need to be at least recognized if  teachers hope to develop the writing capacity of trainee teachers in an academic context.

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