Academic Reading and Writing

Saturday, May 20, 2017 - 3:00pm to 5:00pm
Event Speaker: 
Peter Burden
Caleb Prichard
Nobuko Tahara
Fee for JALT members: 
Fee for non-JALT members: 
500 yen

Detecting Plagiarism in an Academic Writing Class: An Action Research Project
Peter Burden (1 hour)
This study, through an Action Research stance, considers plagiarism in an Academic Writing context in a private university. In an elective class for students seeking entry into Graduate School, it soon became apparent that plagiarism was a problem. The study first defines plagiarism and analyses why students plagiarize. Subsequently, three examples of student plagiarism in this class are discussed followed by comments from students about the issue of plagiarism. Findings suggest students need a heightened understanding of the issues of plagiarism, a discussion of topics that might reduce the need for students to plagiarize, and a class emphasis on peer review to bring plagiarism to light at an early stage. All are required together with paraphrasing and referencing emphasis and training. There will be chances for participant discussion on plagiarism issues.

Reading Strategies of Students for Summary Writing: An Eye Tracking Study
Caleb Prichard (1/2 hour)
Effective L2 readers are strategic and give selective attention to a text?s main points or to details relevant to their reading purpose. However, L2 readers often rely on linear reading and pay equal attention to all sentences.This presentation utilizes eye tracking research to highlight the influence of effective reading strategies on summary writing. Implications will be discussed, and classroom activities for strategy training with be modeled.

Discourse Forming Strategies in L2 English Essays
Nobuko Tahara (1/2 hour)
This presentation will describe features of L2 English essays by Japanese students, as compared to L1 English essays, focusing on the use of shell nouns (Schmid, 2000), a type of metadiscursive noun. By analysing higher frequency shell nouns for certain syntactic patterns in L2 essays (e.g., reason, problem, thing), I will explain discourse strategies specific to L2 essays, such as: vague lexicalisation of shell nouns in anaphoric functions and the use of noun-modifying evaluative adjectives. Pedagogical implications will also be discussed.