Reasoning patterns of undergraduate theses in translation studies: An intercultural rhetoric study

Mianjun Xu, Chenchen Huang, Xiaoye You

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

ESP/EAP professionals, by focusing on issues that arise from instructional practice in Anglo-American nations, have unwittingly perpetuated a deficit model in teaching and researching academic writing in other parts of the world. Students' writing is often measured against the language standards in those "center" nations. An intercultural rhetoric framework suggests that we need to view English writing as a local practice in which students appropriate resources from various "small cultures" (Holliday, 1999). Further, representing writing practice outside of Anglo-American contexts in research requires a dialectical process, negotiating between local and translocal frames and concepts. Adopting this rhetorical framework, we examined the reasoning patterns of 75 highly rated undergraduate theses in translation studies at a Chinese university. Our study reveals that the thesis writing community has established its own language standards and the students appropriate these standards to fashion their reasoning styles. Further, they marshal additional resources from national, professional-academic, and instructional cultures. We conclude by offering suggestions for teaching and researching thesis writing in non-English dominant contexts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-81
Number of pages14
JournalEnglish for Specific Purposes
Volume41
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language

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