Postgraduate Writing in a Globalised World
  • ISSN 0155-0640
  • E-ISSN: 1833-7139
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes


The need to establish an authorial identity in academic discourse has been considered to be critical for all doctoral students by academic writing teachers and researchers for some time. For students for whom English is an additional language (EAL) in particular, the challenges are not only how to communicate this identity effectively in English, but also how to develop from a writer who simply ventriloquizes the voices of scholarly others to an author who writes with authority and discipline-specific rhetorical knowledge. In the current project, we explored how three EAL students constructed authorial voices through the use of personal and impersonal forms of self-representation and evaluative stance in the Introduction sections of their written PhD Confirmation Reports. Our findings indicate that students combined a complex range of linguistic and rhetorical resources, such as integral and non-integral attribution of sources and attitudinal markers of stance, in their quest to project credible authorial identities as Applied Linguists. We also discovered the effect of these resources on readers to be cumulative. We recommend further research, including interviews with students, supervisors and examiners from across the disciplines, to explore and extend the scope of the present study.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Bloomberg, L. D. , & Volpe, M
    (2012) Completing your qualitative dissertation: A road map from beginning to end (2nd ed.). Los Angeles, California & London: Sage.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Bourdieu, P
    (1991) Language and symbolic power ( G. Raymond & M. Adamson , Trans.). Cambridge, UK: Polity Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Bruce, I
    (2014) Expressing criticality in the literature review in research article introductions in applied linguistics and psychology. English for Specific Purposes, 36, 85–96. doi: 10.1016/j.esp.2014.06.004
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esp.2014.06.004 [Google Scholar]
  4. Cadman, C
    (1997) Thesis writing for international students: A question of identity?English for Specific Purposes, 16(1), 3–14. doi: 10.1016/S0889‑4906(96)00029‑4
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0889-4906(96)00029-4 [Google Scholar]
  5. Canagarajah, S
    (2015) ‘Blessed in my own way’: Pedagogical affordances for dialogical voice construction in multilingual student writing. Journal of Second Language Writing, 27, 122–139. doi: 10.1016/j.jslw.2014.09.001
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2014.09.001 [Google Scholar]
  6. Charles, M
    (2007) Argument or evidence? Disciplinary variation in the use of the Noun that pattern in stance construction. English for Specific Purposes, 26, 203–218. doi: 10.1016/j.esp.2006.08.004
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esp.2006.08.004 [Google Scholar]
  7. Denzin, N. K. , & Lincoln, Y. S
    (Eds.) (2011) Handbook of qualitative research (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Flowerdew, J. , & Wang, S. H
    (2015) Identity in academic discourse. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 35, 81–99. doi: 10.1017/S026719051400021X
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S026719051400021X [Google Scholar]
  9. Hood, S
    (2006) The persuasive power of prosodies: Radiating values in academic writing. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 5, 37–49. doi: 10.1016/j.jeap.2005.11.001
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jeap.2005.11.001 [Google Scholar]
  10. (2010) Appraising research: Evaluation in academic writing. London: Palgrave Macmillan. doi: 10.1057/9780230274662
    https://doi.org/10.1057/9780230274662 [Google Scholar]
  11. Hyland, K
    (2005) Stance and engagement: A model of interaction in academic discourse. Discourse Studies, 7, 173–192. doi: 10.1177/1461445605050365
    https://doi.org/10.1177/1461445605050365 [Google Scholar]
  12. (2010) Metadiscourse: Mapping interactions in academic writing. Nordic Journal of English Studies, 9, 125–143.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. Ivanič, R. , & Camps, D
    (2001) ‘I am how I sound’: Voice as self-representation in L2 writing. Journal of Second Language Writing, 10, 3–33. doi: 10.1016/S1060‑3743(01)00034‑0
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S1060-3743(01)00034-0 [Google Scholar]
  14. Kamler, B. , & Thompson, P
    (2006) Helping doctoral students write: Pedagogies for supervision. New York: Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Martin, J. R
    (2000) Beyond exchange: Appraisal systems in English. In S. Hunston & G. Thompson (Eds.), Evaluation in text: Authorial stance and the construction of discourse (pp.142–175). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Martin, J. R. , & Rose, D
    (2003) Working with discourse: Meaning beyond the clause. London: Continuum.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Matsuda, K. P
    (2015) Identity in written discourse. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 35, 140–159. doi: 10.1017/S0267190514000178
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S0267190514000178 [Google Scholar]
  18. Matsuda, P. , & Tardy, C
    (2007) Voice in academic writing: The rhetorical construction of author identity in blind manuscript review. English for Specific Purposes, 26, 235–249. doi: 10.1016/j.esp.2006.10.001
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.esp.2006.10.001 [Google Scholar]
  19. Merriam, S. B
    (1998) Qualitative research and case study application in education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. Mewburn, I. , Tokareva, E. , Cuthbert, D. , Sinclair, J. , & Barnacle, R
    (2014) ‘These are issues that should not be raised in black and white’: The culture of progress reporting and the doctorate. Higher Education Research and Development, 33(3), 510–522. doi: 10.1080/07294360.2013.841649
    https://doi.org/10.1080/07294360.2013.841649 [Google Scholar]
  21. Morton, J. , Storch, N. , & Thompson, C
    (2014) Feedback on writing in the supervision of postgraduate students: Insights from Vygotsky and Bakhtin. Journal of Academic Language & Learning, 8(1), 24–36.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. Pennycook, A
    (1994) The politics of pronouns. ELT Journal, 48(2), 173–178. doi: 10.1093/elt/48.2.173
    https://doi.org/10.1093/elt/48.2.173 [Google Scholar]
  23. Prior, P
    (2001) Voices in text, mind, and society. Sociohistoric accounts of discourse acquisition and use. Journal of Second Language Writing, 10, 55–81. doi: 10.1016/S1060‑3743(00)00037‑0
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S1060-3743(00)00037-0 [Google Scholar]
  24. Ramanathan, V. , & Atkinson, D
    (1999) Individualism, academic writing, and ESL writers. Journal of Second Language Writing, 8(1), 45–75. doi: 10.1016/S1060‑3743(99)80112‑X
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S1060-3743(99)80112-X [Google Scholar]
  25. Seloni, L
    (2014) “I’m an artist and scholar who is trying to find the middle point”: A textographic analysis of a Columbian art historian’s thesis writing. Journal of Second Language Writing, 25, 79–99. doi: 10.1016/j.jslw.2014.06.001
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2014.06.001 [Google Scholar]
  26. Silverman, D
    (Ed.) (2011) Qualitative research: Issues of theory, method, and practice (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Swales, J
    (1990) Genre analysis: English in academic and research settings. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  28. (2004) Research genres: Explorations and applications. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9781139524827
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139524827 [Google Scholar]
  29. Thompson, C
    (2011) Plagiarism, intertextuality and the politics of knowledge, identity and textual ownership in undergraduate ESL/EFL students’ academic writing. In Le Ha Phan & B. Baurain (Eds.), Voices, identities, negotiations, and conflicts: Writing academic English across cultures (pp.157–177). Bingley, United Kingdom: Emerald.
    [Google Scholar]
  30. Thompson, P
    (2012) Achieving a voice of authority in PhD theses. In K. Hyland & C. S. Guinda (Eds.), Stance and voice in written academic genres (pp.117–133). New York: Palgrave Macmillan. doi: 10.1057/9781137030825_8
    https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137030825_8 [Google Scholar]
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error