Research and scholarship on academic writing offer a range of strategies that can be adapted for PhD supervision. This presentation will cover some of this range, particularly those that students and supervisors say they find useful. It will include illustrations of writing activities and students’ reactions to them. There will also be evidence of impact, in terms of completions, publications and various forms of progression, drawing on studies funded by the British Academy and Nuffield Foundation. The aim is to present a repertoire of writing strategies that supervisors can use to help students keep their writing on track.
There will be something on each of the following:
Writing to prompts
Practical strategies for getting started
Structures of academic arguments
Talking about writing strategies
Goal-setting and monitoring for writing
Talking about writing-in-progress
Constructing a ‘contribution’ argument
Writing a thesis summary
Writing a thesis abstract
Conventions of journal articles in the discipline
Productive writing practices.
There will also be suggestions for integrating these very different strategies.
It is not my intention to map all of these across the PhD, since each student is different, their learning and research may have different stages and each research project may have different components. Instead, I intend to make the case for researchers developing a repertoire of strategies and a common language for talking about writing – as part of a research process. This is not about seeing writing as a ‘problem’, so much as using writing as a problem-solving procedure.
For more detail on my work and more evidence of impact, see the following books, chapters and articles:
Eley A & Murray R (2009) How to be an Effective Supervisor. Maidenhead: Open University Press-McGraw-Hill.
Lee, A & Murray, R (forthcoming) In how many ways can supervisors help postgraduate research students when focusing on academic writing?, Innovations in Education and Teaching International.
Murray R (2010) Becoming rhetorical in C Aitchison, B Kamler and A Lee (Eds) Publishing Pedagogies for the Doctorate and Beyond. London: Routledge.
Murray R (2011) How to Write a Thesis, 3rd edition. Maidenhead: Open University Press-McGraw-Hill.
Murray R (2013) Writing for Academic Journals, 3rd edition. Maidenhead: Open University Press-McGraw-Hill.
Murray, R (2014) Doctoral students create new spaces to write in C Aitchison and C Guerin (Eds) Writing groups for doctoral education and beyond: Innovations in theory and practice. London: Routledge.
Murray R (2014) ‘Snack’ and ‘binge’ writing, Journal of Academic Development and Education, Keele University, May 2014.
Murray R, Steckley L & MacLeod I (2012) Research leadership in writing for publication: A theoretical framework, British Educational Research Journal, 38(5): 765-781. DOI: 10.1080/01411926.2011.580049.
Presented by Rowena Murray
Enquiries: E email@example.com T 6125 7555
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