Second Language Writing Research: Perspectives on the Process of Knowledge Construction
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In this original volume, eighteen researchers from different parts of the world reflect on their own research projects, providing insights into key methodological issues in research on second language writing. By offering a glimpse into the process of constructing and negotiating knowledge in the field--the messy space of situated practices of inquiry--it helps to demystify the research process, which can appear in published studies and in introductory methodology guides to be neater and more orderly than it actually is.
Taking a broad conception of research as inquiry that emphasizes the situated and constructed nature of knowledge in the field, Second Language Writing Research: Perspectives on the Process of Knowledge Construction encourages multiple forms of inquiry, including philosophical, narrative, and historical modes. Empirical inquiry as presented in this book encompasses both quantitative and qualitative approaches as well as those that strategically combine them. A helpful discussion of the "nuts and bolts" of developing sustainable research programs is also provided. The volume as a whole facilitates a situated, issue-driven research practice. Its unique focus on second language writing research makes it an invaluable resource for both novice and experienced researchers in the field.
designed to highlight some of the key issues, assumptions, questions, and trategies in conducting second language writing research through contributors' reflections on a specific research project they have completed. Some of the key assumptions underlying many of the chapters include: • Any approach to research is based on a set of assumptions about the nature of reality and knowledge as well as ways of arriving at that knowledge. • Second language writing research draws on multiple modes of
make things a bit easier for them and also help them prepare for the test. There are many things to comment on in these two interviews. In keepng with situated qualitative research practice, I offer a brief interpretation of some aspects of these interviews that is in every sense provisional, and hat I do not intend to impose on others. On the contrary, my reason for eaturing these transcripts at length is largely to provide material for an acive critique of the methodology, which—please
Composition Profile." Since this scoring guide was published in 1981, it has proved very popular. It, or its offspring, will be familiar from workshop handouts or Xeroxes left behind in aculty coffee rooms. In its main features, it is no different than dozens of similar guides by which raters have decided, and continue to decide, the academic fate of thousands upon thousands of second language students. These main features are: 1. A limited number of basic criteria or main traits (e.g., content,
mechanics than a misspelling of America. Compared to this classical categorization,prototypical categorization operates quite differently. It does not fix a set of defining features, but rather organizes itself around a best example or prototype. Members of the category stand closer or further from this prototype. Members or parts of a category are not equal—they have different degrees of centrality or "goodness of part" (this quality of prototype categories is sometimes called graded structure).
participants differentially nvest in tasks (Dias, Freedman, Medway, & Pare, 1999; Parks, 2000; Ray- 10. QUALITATIVE RESEARCH AS HEURISTIC 143 mond & Parks, 2002; Roebuck, 1998). To enhance the validity of formal asks, I would also recommend the following two measures. First, it is crucial to engage participants in a follow-up discussion of the tasks to better understand how they interpret them and why. In the present study, it was he follow-up discussion that enabled the issues related to