Academic journal article The Qualitative Report

Voices from Within: Student Teachers' Experiences in English Academic Writing Socialization at One Indonesian Teacher Training Program

Academic journal article The Qualitative Report

Voices from Within: Student Teachers' Experiences in English Academic Writing Socialization at One Indonesian Teacher Training Program

Article excerpt

Writing has become a crucial issue due to a policy made by the Indonesian Ministry of Education and Culture through the Directorate of Higher Education requiring university students including under/graduate students to write a research article on an academic journal as one of their requirements to finish their study at their home university. Some parties are for the policy, but some are against the policy. The followers of the policy have claimed that the policy would increase the number of research articles published nationally and internationally. However, the opponents of the policy claimed that the policy has not considered the negative impacts such as an increase in plagiarism since the anti-plagiarism has not been established well throughout the country.

Regardless of the debate on the policy, previous literature has indicated that writing is one of the most important skills for students at university level. Additionally, writing is deemed as a complex cognitive and motivational activity encompassing problems solving and deploying strategies to achieve communicative goals (Graham, 2010; Kurt & Atay, 2007; McLeod, 1987). Becoming a good writer requires discourse knowledge on the various aims and forms of writing and knowledge on the topics of students' compositions (Graham, 2010). Writing in English in higher education is not a single entity but rather for students, it epitomizes a multifaceted collection of interconnected abilities, processes, and relationships requiring academic socialization models of academic writing (Deane, Odendahl, Quinlan, Fowles, Welsh, & Bivens-Tatum, 2008; Gan, Humphreys, and Lyons, 2004; McLeod, 1987).

The importance of writing in English has become the focus of several previous studies (Adams, 2003; Castro, 2004; Ellis & Yuan, 2004; Erkan & Saban, 2011; Gupta & Woldemariam 2011; Johnson, 1992; Lee, 2002; Lynch & Maclean, 2000; Snellings, Van Gelderen, & De Glopper, 2004). However, even though several studies have been done related to writing in English as a second or foreign language, studies on foreign learners' difficulties and constraints in producing a second or foreign language especially in written forms are few; particularly English education student teachers at non-English speaking universities in Indonesia.

The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine the experiences of Indonesian student teachers in English academic writing socialization at one public university teacher training program in Jambi, Indonesia. Participants in this study were required by their program to take four writing courses in English and to write a mini research paper in their final year. This research is important because research exploring the experiences of Indonesian student teachers in English academic writing, especially at non-English speaking universities in Indonesia is still rare. This study would also be an attempt to fill the gap in the literature related student teachers' difficulties and constraints in academic writing at university level and how teacher education management related to the English academic writing internalization should be improved at the program level.

The Context of the Study

In qualitative research, the report should incorporate background information of the researcher, his or her personal connections to the participants, topic being studied, and the perspectives that he or she brings to the subject (Patton, 2002). This suggests that a qualitative researcher should "explicitly identify their biases, values, and personal interest about their research topic and process" and access to the research participants (Creswell, 2002, p. 184). The first author for this study is a faculty member of the Faculty of Education, Jambi University in Jambi, Indonesia. He holds a PhD from Florida State University in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies sponsored by Fulbright. He was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands. …

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