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EunHee Lee

The Logic of Narratives is a linguistic study of narrative discourse that contextualizes the ‘logical’ rather than the ‘stylistic’ aspect of narratives within the range of current issues in the interdisciplinary study of narratives being conducted in linguistics, philosophy, literature, cognitive science, and Artificial Intelligence. The book quantitatively analyzes naturally occurring narratives randomly selected from the British National Corpus (BNC) as well as James Joyce’s (1882-1941) The Dead (1914) and Fredrik Backman’s (1981-) A Man Called Ove (2012). Discourse Representation Theory (DRT) formalization (Kamp and Reyle, 1993) is employed and enriched with the representations and interpretations of perspective/point of view, genre differences, coherence relations, and episodes, which are called in the book Perspectival DRT (PDRT).

Edited by Tilmann Köppe, Andreas Mauz, Oliver R. Scholz, Christiane Tietz and Ruben Zimmermann

Ten Lectures on Corpus Linguistics with R

Applications for Usage-Based and Psycholinguistic Research

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Stefan Th. Gries

In this book, Stefan Th. Gries provides an overview on how quantitative corpus methods can provide insights to cognitive/usage-based linguistics and selected psycholinguistic questions. Topics include the corpus linguistics in general, its most important methodological tools, its statistical nature, and the relation of all these topics to past and current usage-based theorizing. Central notions discussed in detail include frequency, dispersion, context, and others in a variety of applications and case studies; four practice sessions offer short introductions of how to compute various corpus statistics with the open source programming language and environment R.

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Zev Handel

In the more than 3,000 years since its invention, the Chinese script has been adapted many times to write languages other than Chinese, including Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese, and Zhuang. In Sinography: The Borrowing and Adaptation of the Chinese Script, Zev Handel provides a comprehensive analysis of how the structural features of these languages constrained and motivated methods of script adaptation. This comparative study reveals the universal principles at work in the borrowing of logographic scripts. By analyzing and explaining these principles, Handel advances our understanding of how early writing systems have functioned and spread, providing a new framework that can be applied to the history of scripts beyond East Asia, such as Sumerian and Akkadian cuneiform.

Lost Knowledge

The Concept of Vanished Technologies and Other Human Histories

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Benjamin B. Olshin

Lost Knowledge: The Concept of Vanished Technologies and Other Human Histories examines the idea of lost knowledge, reaching back to a period between myth and history. It investigates a peculiar idea found in a number of early texts: that there were civilizations with knowledge of sophisticated technologies, and that this knowledge was obscured or destroyed over time along with the civilization that had created it. This book presents critical studies of a series of early Chinese, South Asian, and other texts that look at the idea of specific “lost” technologies, such as mechanical flight and the transmission of images. There is also an examination of why concepts of a vanished “golden age” were prevalent in so many cultures. Offering an engaging and investigative look at the propagation of history and myth in technology and culture, this book is sure to interest historians and readers from many backgrounds.

Observing Writing

Insights from Keystroke Logging and Handwriting

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Edited by Eva Lindgren and Kirk Sullivan

Observing writing: Insights from Keystroke Logging and Handwriting is a timely volume appearing twelve years after the Studies in Writing volume Computer Keystroke Logging and Writing (Sullivan & Lindgren, 2006). The 2006 volume provided the reader with a fundamental account of keystroke logging, a methodology in which a piece of software records every keystroke, cursor and mouse movement a writer undertakes during a writing session. This new volume highlights current theoretical and applied research questions in keystroke logging and handwriting research that observes writing. In this volume, contributors from a range of disciplines, including linguistics, psychology, neuroscience, modern languages, and education, present their research that considers the cognitive and socio-cultural complexities of writing texts in academic and professional settings.

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Edited by Coppélie Cocq and Kirk Sullivan

Exploring Indigenous writing and literacies across five continents, this volume celebrates the resilience of Indigenous languages. This book makes a significant contribution to the understanding of the contemporary challenges facing Indigenous writing and literacies and argues that innovative and creative ideas can create a hopeful future for Indigenous writing. Contributions following the themes ‘Sketching the Context’, ‘Enhancing Writing’, and ‘Creating the Future’ are concluded with two reflective chapters evidencing the importance of volume’s thesis for the future of Indigenous writing and literacies. This volume encourages the development of research in this area, specifically inviting the international writing research community to engage with Indigenous peoples and support research on the nexus of Indigenous writing, literacies and education.

Voices on Birchbark

Everyday Communication in Medieval Russia

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Jos Schaeken

In Voices on Birchbark Jos Schaeken explores the major role that writing on birchbark – an ephemeral, even ‘throw-away’ form of correspondence and administration – played in the vibrant medieval merchant city of Novgorod and other cities in the Russian Northwest. Birchbark literacy was crucial to the organization of Novgorodian society; it was integrated into a huge variety of activities and had a broad social basis; it was used extensively by the laity, by women as well as men, by villagers as well as landlords. Voices on Birchbark is the first book-length study of this unique corpus in English. By examining a representative selection of birchbark texts, Jos Schaeken presents fascinating vignettes of daily medieval life and a holistic picture of the pragmatics of communication in pre-modern societies.

The Other Greek

An Introduction to Chinese and Japanese Characters, Their History and Influence

Arthur Cooper

Edited by Imre Galambos

In The Other Greek, Arthur Cooper offers a captivating and unorthodox introduction to the world of the Chinese script through the medium of poetry, explaining the structure, meaning and cultural significance of each character. Written nearly half a century ago, and now published posthumously, the book argues that the role of Chinese writing was analogous to the influence of Greek civilization on Western culture. Chinese is the Greek of the Far East, ‘the other Greek’! Originally a cryptanalyst, Cooper uses his professional—and distinctly non-academic—training to analyse Chinese characters and points out a series of unacknowledged associations between them. Ultimately, he aims to initiate the reader with no prior knowledge of the language into Chinese writing and poetry.

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Edited by Mary C. Madden and Precious McKenzie

Teaching Modernist Anglophone Literature features fresh classroom approaches to teaching modernism, with an emphasis on pedagogy grounded in educational theory and contemporary digital media tools. It offers techniques for improving students’ close reading, critical thinking/writing, and engagement with issues of gender, race, class, and social justice. Discussions are raised of subjectivity, perception, the nature of language, and the function of art. Innovative project ideas, assignments, and examples of student work are offered in a special annex. This volume fills a gap in higher education pedagogy uniquely suited to the experimental nature of modernism. Madden and McKenzie’s inspiring volume can steer the teaching of modernist literature in creative, new directions that benefit both teachers and students.

Contributors are: Susan Hays Bussey, William A. Johnsen, Benjamin Johnson, Mary C. Madden, Laci Mattison, Precious McKenzie, Susan Rowland, and Kelsey Squire.

Arthur Cooper

Edited by Imre Galambos

Arthur Cooper

Edited by Imre Galambos

Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

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Arthur Cooper

Edited by Imre Galambos

Arthur Cooper

Edited by Imre Galambos

Arthur Cooper

Edited by Imre Galambos

A Sea of Love

The Atlantic Correspondence of Francis and Mathilde Lieber, 1839-1845

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Claudia Schnurmann

A Sea of Love presents 95 letters exchanged between Hamburg and Antebellum USA by the famous Berlin born scholar, encyclopedist, and knowledge broker Francis Lieber (1798-1872) and his wife, Hamburg born Mathilde in 1839-1845. Their letters offer rare insights in the privacy of marriage and family life, self perceptions, notions of surroundings, as well as mental settings of the spouses. Beyond genuine individual phenomena of their Atlantic emotions their epistles show ways and methods of international communication and networking. Their writings reflect general notions and ideas shared by well-educated citizens of an Atlantic Republic of Letters connected by culture, interests, and emotions.

Presented Discourse in Popular Science

Professional Voices in Books for Lay Audiences

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Olga Pilkington

In Presented Discourse in Popular Science, Olga A. Pilkington explores the forms and functions of the voices of scientists in books written for non-professionals. This study confirms the importance of considering presentation of discourse outside of literary fiction: popular science uses presented discourse in ways uncommon for fiction yet not conventional for non-fiction either.

This analysis is an acknowledgement of the social consequences of popularization. Discourse presentation of scientists reconstructs the world of the scientific community as a human space but also projects back into it an image of the scientist the public wants to see. At the same time, Pilkington’s findings strengthen the view of popularization that rejects the notion of a strict divide between professional and popular science.

On the Fringes of Literature and Digital Media Culture

Perspectives from Eastern and Western Europe

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Edited by Irena Barbara Kalla, Patrycja Poniatowska and Dorota Michułka

On the Fringes of Literature and Digital Media Culture offers a polyphonic account of mutual interpenetrations of literature and new media. Shifting its focus from the personal to the communal and back again, the volume addresses such individual experiences as immersion and emotional reading, offers insights into collective processes of commercialisation and consumption of new media products and explores the experience and mechanisms of interactivity, convergence culture and participatory culture. Crucially, the volume also shows convincingly that, though without doubt global, digital culture and new media have their varied, specifically local facets and manifestations shaped by national contingencies. The interplay of the common subtext and local colour is discussed by the contributors from Eastern Europe and the Western world.

Contributors are: Justyna Fruzińska, Dirk de Geest, Maciej Jakubowiak, Michael Joyce, Kinga Kasperek, Barbara Kaszowska-Wandor, Aleksandra Małecka, Piotr Marecki, Łukasz Mirocha, Aleksandra Mochocka, Emilya Ohar, Mariusz Pisarski, Anna Ślósarz, Dawn Stobbart, Jean Webb, Indrė Žakevičienė, Agata Zarzycka.

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Wendan Li

In Grounding in Chinese Written Narrative Discourse Wendan Li offers a comprehensive and innovative account of how Mandarin Chinese, as a language without extensive morphological marking, highlights (or foregrounds) major events of a narrative and demotes (or backgrounds) other supporting descriptions. Qualitative and quantitative methods in the analysis and examinations of authentic written text provide extensive evidence to demonstrate that various types of morpho-syntactic devices are used in a wide range of structural units in Chinese to mark the distinction between foregrounding and backgrounding. The analysis paves the way for future studies to systematically approach grounding-related issues. The typological viewpoint adopted in the chapters serves well readers from both the Chinese tradition and other languages in discourse analysis.

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Edited by Gudrun Held

The papers in this volume study the relationship between language use and the concept of the “tourist gaze” through a range of communicative practices from different cultures and languages. From a pragmatic perspective, the authors investigate how language constantly adapts to contextual constraints which affect tourism discourse as a strategic meaning-making process that turns insignificant places into desirable tourist destinations. The case studies draw on both, in situ interactions with visitors, such as guided tours and counter information, old and new mediatized genres, i.e. guide books, travelogues, print advertising as well as TV-commercials, service web-sites and apps. Despite the diversity of data, one of the common findings in the volume is that staging the sensory ‘lived’ tourist experience is the lynchpin of all communicative practices. Hence, the use of tourism language reveals itself as the mirror of how ‘people on the move’ continuously enact as ‘tourists’ and ‘places’ are constructed as must-see ‘sights’.

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Edited by Raquel Fidalgo Redondo, Karen Harris and Martine Braaksma

This volume presents effective instructional programs focused on two perspectives on writing: the teaching and learning of writing as a skill and the use of writing as a learning activity in various school subjects or skills acquisition. It is focused on analysing micro-design features of the programs (such as learning activities, supporting materials, specific strategies, instructional techniques) but also, macro-design rules of intervention programs (such as, instructional sequence, instructional stages) based on research evidence provided for previous studies. This volume goes beyond a practical volume because it provides additional reflection and discussion about theoretical background and empirically based evidence which support the specific intervention programs described. Several chapters in this book include links to an Open Access e-book where teacher and student materials for the authors’ instructional approaches can be found (see ToC).

Writing Development in Struggling Learners

Understanding the Needs of Writers across the Lifecourse

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Edited by Brett Miller, Peggy McCardle and Vincent Connelly

In Writing Development in Struggling Learners, international writing researchers provide critical insights into the development of writing skills for individuals who struggle to become profi cient writers. This edited volume takes a life course view and examines concepts for development of writing skills with a focus on where learners struggle, why this may occur for those without and without specifi c learning disorders, how to identify these learners and what we can do to facilitate effi cient writing. Throughout the volume, struggling learners are presented via a holistic lens; contributors succinctly synthesize the literature base and present insights into the current state of the science and areas of future need and advancement.

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Edited by Jacob Høigilt and Gunvor Mejdell

The Politics of Written Language in the Arab World connects the fascinating field of contemporary written Arabic with the central sociolinguistic notions of language ideology and diglossia. Focusing on Egypt and Morocco, the authors combine large-scale survey data on language attitudes with in-depth analyses of actual language usage and explicit (and implicit) language ideology. They show that writing practices as well as language attitudes in Egypt and Morocco are far more receptive to vernacular forms than has been assumed.

The individual chapters cover a wide variety of media, from books and magazines to blogs and Tweets. A central theme running through the contributions is the social and political function of “doing informality” in a changing public sphere steadily more permeated by written Arabic in a number of media.

The e-book version of this publication is available in Open Access.

Arabic Type-Making in the Machine Age

The Influence of Technology on the Form of Arabic Type, 1908–1993

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Titus Nemeth

Arabic is the third most widely used script in the world, and gave rise to one of the richest manuscript cultures of mankind. Its representation in type has engaged printers, engineers, businesses and designers since the 16th century, and today most digital devices render Arabic type. Yet the evolution of the printed form of Arabic, and its development from metal to pixels, has not been charted before. Arabic Type-Making in the Machine Age provides the first comprehensive account of this history using previously undocumented archival sources. In this richly illustrated volume, Titus Nemeth narrates the evolution of Arabic type under the influence of changing technologies from the perspective of a practitioner, combining historical research with applied design considerations.

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Edited by Juan Carlos Iglesias-Zoido and Victoria Pineda

Anthologies of speeches excerpted from history books constitute a relatively little-known rhetorical and bibliographic genre. From ancient times to the present day, the practice of culling characters’ orations from one or more works and publishing them independently of their original source has produced new and different ways of reading and using history. Anthologies of Historiographical Speeches offers an introduction to the very diverse questions that arise from the study of the genre through a variety of approaches and methodological tools. Lying at the point where rhetoric and historiography intersect, the essays included in this volume focus on the rhetorical aspects of the collections, as well as on their production, transmission, and reception from antiquity to the early modern period.

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Edited by Kristyan Spelman Miller and Marie Stevenson

Transitions in Writing addresses the experiences of writers as they move between contexts of writing and juggle new and different demands. Spelman Miller and Stevenson bring together research by scholars in a range of settings across the world who approach transition from different standpoints. Transition is often conceived of as a change in setting, coinciding with physical or temporal relocation, such as between stages of an educational or professional career. However, writers also manage more local, micro-level transitions as they move between genres, registers and rhetorical moves to meet the demands of the task. The combination of both macro- and micro-level perspectives on transition offers a novel, broad conception of the types of change a writer encounters, and illustrates a range of methodological approaches appropriate to exploring such transitions.

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Michael Sharkey

This volume contains a selection of the Australian poet Michael Sharkey’s uncollected essays and occasional writings on poetics and poets, chiefly Australian and New Zealand. Reviews and conversations with other poets highlight Sharkey’s concern with preserving and interrogating cultural memory and his engagement with the practice and championing of poetry. Poets discussed range from Lord Byron to colonial-era and early-twentieth-century poets (Francis Adams, David McKee Wright, and Zora Cross), under-represented Australian women poets of World War I, traditionalists and experimentalists, including several ‘New Australian Poetry’ activists of the 1970s, and contemporary Australian and New Zealand poets. Writings on poetics address form and tradition, the teaching and reception of poetry, and canon-formation. The collection is culled from commissioned and occasional contributions to anthologies of practical poetics, journals devoted to literary and cultural history and book reviewing, as well as newspaper and small-magazine features from the 1980s to the present. The writing reflects Sharkey’s poetic practice and pedagogy relating to the teaching of literature, rhetorical analysis, cultural studies, and writing in universities, schools, and cultural organizations in Australia, New Zealand, China, and Germany. It also evidences Sharkey’s familiarity with literatures written in English and his wider career in publishing, editing, free-lance journalism, and the promotion of Australian and New Zealand literature, especially poetry.

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Edited by Claire Clivaz, Paul Dilley and David Hamidović

The volume presents a selection of research projects in Digital Humanities applied to the “Biblical Studies” in the widest sense and context, including Early Jewish and Christian studies, hence the title “Ancient Worlds”. Taken as a whole, the volume explores the emergent Digital Culture at the beginning of the 21st century. It also offers many examples which attest to a change of paradigm in the textual scholarship of “Ancient Worlds”: categories are reshaped; textuality is (re-) investigated according to its relationships with orality and visualization; methods, approaches and practices are no longer a fixed conglomeration but are mobilized according to their contexts and newly available digital tools.

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Edited by Francesca Bianchi and Sara Gesuato

Pragmatic Issues in Specialized Communicative Contexts, edited by Francesca Bianchi and Sara Gesuato, illustrates how interactants systematically and effectively employ micro and macro linguistic resources and textual strategies to engage in communicative practices in such specific contexts as healthcare services, TV interpreting, film dialogue, TED talks, archaeology academic communication, student-teacher communication, and multilingual classrooms. Each contribution presents a pedagogical slant, reporting on or suggesting didactic approaches to, or applications of, pragmatic aspects of communication in SL, FL and LSP learning contexts. The topics covered and the issues addressed are all directly relevant to applied pragmatics, that is, pragmatically oriented linguistic analysis that accounts for interpersonal-transactional issues in real-life situated communication.

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Edited by Esther Breuer and Arlene Archer

Multimodality in Higher Education theorizes writing practices and pedagogy from a multimodal perspective. It looks at the theoretical and methodological uptake of multimodal approaches in a range of domains in Higher Education, including art and design, architecture, composition studies, science, management accounting and engineering. Changes in the communication landscape have engendered an increasing recognition of the different semiotic dimensions of representation. Student assignments require increasingly complex multimodal competencies and Higher Education needs to be equipped to students with these texts. Multimodality in Higher Education explores the changing communication landscapes in Higher Education in terms of spaces and texts, as well as new processes of production and creativity in the new media.

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Hugh A.G. Houghton and Catherine J. Smith

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Claire Clivaz, Paul Dilley and David Hamidović

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Cecile Marie Badenhorst, Rhonda Joy, Sharon Penney, Sarah Pickett, Jackie Hesson, Gabrielle Young, Heather McLeod, Dorothy Vaandering and Xuemei Li

Abstract

For many academics, the challenge of traversing the competitive discourse demands of conducting research and publishing journal articles while navigating teaching and administrative loads often leads to anxiety and stress. Becoming an academic is often an implicit process where one is left alone to find one’s way. Located in Canada, the Faculty of Education, Memorial University, Newfoundland, has over the past six years, hired a number of professionals: educators and counsellors. Many of these new faculty have less experience in conducting research than new faculty in non-professional disciplines. To counter these difficulties, some new academics decided to form a faculty writing group. The writing group had limited success until members set aside a period of five months to devote to reflective practice. Our qualitative analysis of the data shows that the written reflections were crucial for learning the professional practices of becoming an academic. The data indicated that group members found this method enabled them to reflect on the shifting boundaries between personal/professional, work/home, and novice/expert. The weekly writing also allowed members to explore emotions not often voiced in academic spaces. The purpose of this chapter is to show how reflective writing supported the professional development of group members.

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Rebecca Woodard

Abstract

Using a sociohistoric perspective that theorizes teaching as participation across practices (Dreier, 1999; Lave & Wenger, 1991; Scollon, 2001), this chapter explores affective dimensions of writing and teaching writing in three multi-month case studies—one each of an elementary, middle, and high school teacher engaged in writing groups outside of school. Each of the teachers repeatedly referenced the fear, vulnerability, and courage associated with writing and sharing writing across observational and interview data sources, resulting in an analytic focus on what it meant to be a “brave writer.” For Samantha, being a brave writer meant participating a community of writers, even when it was difficult; for Annette, it meant becoming vulnerable as a writer through topic choice and genre play, and as a writing teacher through sharing processes and products; and for Lisa, it meant having the courage to make significant revisions to writing she had worked hard on. In all three cases, writing transformed teachers’ classroom practices as they became more vulnerable in their classrooms by writing alongside students and providing more opportunities for students to revise and/or share writing.

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Giulia Ortoleva and Mireille Bétrancourt

Abstract

Computers have become prevalent in most professional activities, as they are used with different aims, from the administration of work to the performance of core professional activities. However, vocational educational programs rarely integrate computer support for writing activities in the school or training place, yet often require trainees to prepare printed project reports. The computer is thus considered as a mere production tool and its affordances for learning and training are ignored. This chapter presents an overview of the way computer technology can be used to facilitate and support individual and collaborative writing, with the perspective of fostering learning and professional development. After identifying the functions and affordances offered by technology to support different aspects of the writing activity, with a particular attention to the tools oriented towards collaboration, the chapter provides examples of studies involving two types of computer-supported collaborative writing activities: collaborative production with Wikis, and asynchronous discussions, in two different domains: teacher education and health. The potential benefits of collaborative writing on professional development in terms of social and individual knowledge construction are discussed, providing recommendations for the implementation of productive collaborative writing instructional activities.

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Terri Grant

Abstract

This chapter demonstrates the use of scenario pedagogy, a multimodal, experiential approach to teaching professional communication practices, particularly report-writing. Embedding all tasks and deliverables within an environmental scenario allows student teams to crystallise their thinking in situ and deliver authentic and well-constructed final reports to real-life clients. The method adopts a qualitative case study approach to conduct a multimodal discourse analysis of a randomly selected team’s final report as the culmination of their developmental trajectory. It aims to show how authorial stance and modality or “truth value” are instantiated through student verbal and visual products and processes. This fine-grained analysis shows how the team in question grapples with discursive, generic and modal design choices—not always successfully—towards developing their professional identities, apt for a multimodal, multicultural and multilingual workplace.

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Pauline Glover and Linda Sweet

Abstract

Canonical knowledge development, or learning the language of the profession, is an inherent component of any professional curricula. Midwifery is no exception to this. Midwifery is a practice based profession where the midwife works in partnership with women and other health care professionals to provide care during pregnancy, birthing and the postnatal period. A core component of the Bachelor of Midwifery is Continuity of Care Experience. This experience involves midwifery students engaging with women to follow them through with their pregnancy, birthing and post natal experience. The aim of these work based experiences is for students to: (i) engage with and reflect on the world of midwifery work; (2) understand and develop their individual capacity for the profession; and (iii) understand the nuances of the many and diverse instances of midwifery practices and birthing women’s trajectories (Sweet & Glover 2011). This chapter will focus on the development of professional language through the use of writing reflectively to describe the Continuity of Care Experiences, and will demonstrate that language changes over time and progresses from descriptive to professional.

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Giulia Ortoleva, Mireille Bétrancourt and Stephen Billett

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Cecile Badenhorst and Cally Guerin

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Arlene Archer and Esther Odilia Breuer

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Giulia Ortoleva, Mireille Bétrancourt and Stephen Billett

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Cecile Badenhorst and Cally Guerin

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Arlene Archer and Esther Odilia Breuer

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Alberto Cattaneo and Elena Boldrini

Abstract

In the writing-to-learn perspective, reflective writing has been widely recognized as an effective tool to develop and acquire knowledge. In the context of professional development within Vocational Education and Training, the process of writing can be variously exploited to foster competence development. Here it is meant as a an occasion for connecting theoretical knowledge and practical knowledge by means of a structured and analytical reflection that apprentices apply to their own or peers’ professional experiences. In this contribution we present three different instructional scenarios where individual and collaborative writing settings have been experimented. We measured whether these instructional activities can have an effect on the apprentices’ reflective capacity and on their procedural learning, verifying positive effects both in individual and collaborative writing activities.

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Edited by Cecile Badenhorst and Cally Guerin

Debates about researcher education emphasise the dramatic changes facing higher education in the twenty-first century. Post/graduate students must learn often-hidden research literacies with very limited support. Research Literacies and Writing Pedagogies for Masters and Doctoral Writersexplores the challenges students face when engaging in research writing. The chapters offer insights into effective pedagogies, ranging from direct, scaffolded instruction to peer learning, in face-to-face and online interventions. Themes extend from genre approaches, threshold concepts and publishing pedagogies through to the emotional aspects of post/graduate writing, writing groups, peer learning and relational collaborations, employing both online and digital technologies. Throughout, authors have revealed how research literacies and writing pedagogies, in situated contexts around the globe, demonstrate practices that are constantly changing in the face of personal, institutional and broader influences.

With contributions from: Nick Almond, Cecile Badenhorst, Agnes Bosanquet, Marcia Z. Buell, Jayde Cahir, Mary Davies Turner, Robert B. Desjardins, Gretchen L. Dietz, Jennifer Dyer, Shawana Fazal, Marília Mendes Ferreira, Amanda French, Clare Furneaux, Cally Guerin, Pejman Habibie, Devon R. Kehler, Muhammad Ilyas Khan, Kyung Min Kim, Sally S. Knowles, Stephen Kuntz, Tara Lockhart, Michelle A. Maher, Muhammad Iqbal Majoka, Cecilia Moloney, Zinia Pritchard, Janna Rosales, Brett H. Say, Natalia V. Smirnova, Natalie Stillman-Webb, Joan Turner, John Turner, Gina Wisker, and K. Hyoejin Yoon.

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Edited by Giulia Ortoleva, Mireille Bétrancourt and Stephen Billett

In their edited volume Writing for Professional Development, Giulia Ortoleva, Mireille Bétrancourt and Stephen Billett provide a range of contributions in which empirical research, instructional models and educational practice are used to explore and illuminate how the task and process of writing can be used as tools for professional development.

Throughout the volume, two main perspectives are considered: learning to write professionally and writing to learn the profession, both for initial occupational preparation and ongoing development within them. The contributions consider a range of fields of professional practice, across sectors of education, starting from the premises that the role of writing as evolved in all occupational domains, becoming a key activity in most workplaces.

Contributors are: Cecile M. Badenhorst, Elena Boldrini, Esther Breuer, Inês Cardoso, Alberto Cattaneo, Peter Czigler, Jessica Dehler, Pauline Glover, Terri Grant, Jean-Luc Gurtner, Jacqueline Hesson, Ashgar Iran-Nejad, Rhonda Joy, Ann Kelly, Merja Kurunsaari, Xumei Li, Laetitia Mauroux, Heather McLeod, Elisa Motta, Astrid Neumann, Julian Newman, Sigrid Newman, Sharon Penney, Luísa Alvares Pereira, Sarah Pickett, Iris Susana Pires Pereira, Anna Perréard Vité, Arja Piirainen, Elisa Redondi, Sabine Vanhulle, Ray Smith, Kirk P. H. Sullivan, Linda Sweet, Païvi Tynjälä, Dorothy Vaandering, Rebecca Woodard, and Gabrielle Young.

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Stephen Billett

Abstract

This chapter offers an explanation of the processes of learning that arises through individuals engaging in writing and for professional development purposes. It proposes that this learning arises through mimetic processes (i.e. observing, imitation, practice and monitoring) that are central to the thinking and acting that comprise the act of writing. These mimetic processes are foundational to human cognition, meaning-making and engagement in and outcomes of participation in goal-directed activities, such as writing. The account provided here is aligned with how these processes are or can be directed to worthwhile and purposeful goals, such as professional development. In all, mimetic learning is founded on both inter-and intra-psychological processes. That is, how individuals engage with the world beyond them (i.e. inter-psychologically) and also their cognitive, sensory and neural processes (i.e. intra-psychologically) when enacting goal-directed activities. Central here are foundational human processes associated with cognition and how humans engage in processes of construing what they experience and constructing knowledge from them. Such foundations are helpful for considering how learning arises through engaging in writing activities, and as such its contributions to individuals’ professional development.

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Esther Odilia Breuer, Sigrid Newman and Julian Newman

Abstract

It is a key professional skill to be able to create texts which are comprehensible not only within a professional community, but also to external stakeholders and clients. However, professionals often appear unable to produce written communication appropriate to task and context. In particular, the fields of Technology and Health are often regarded as sources of unclear and confusing written texts. The foundations for appropriate writing skills should be laid during professional education; yet there is confusion about relevant requirements, goals and pedagogical methods. This might reflect context-specific academic traditions or professional orientations. Approaches to learning to write in the education of professionals were investigated by means of a survey in the UK and Germany. Responses were sought from students, specialist subject teachers, writing teachers, and practitioners in two contrasting fields, namely Engineering and Health. The questionnaire data support the view that there are marked differences amongst the groups of respondents in their experiences and in their views, but considerable scope for development through exchange of good practice. The robustness of the conclusions is, however, constrained by the limitations of the survey method. In the conclusion complementary research strategies are outlined whereby understanding of these issues may be further advanced.