Writing for a purpose: materials to improve the quality of discipline-specific student work

Lead Research Organisation: Coventry University
Department Name: Business Environment and Society

Abstract

The aim of this project was to extend the impact of the research conducted for An Investigation of Genres of Assessed Writing in British Higher Education (RES-000-23-0800) by raising teachers' and learners' awareness of the types of writing produced in specific disciplines and at specific levels of university study, and thereby improving the quality of student writing.



 



A substantial bank of motivating and attractive academic writing materials was developed, focussing on the genres and genre families which were identified during the original study and which are described in detail in ‘Genres across the Disciplines: Student writing in higher education’ (Nesi and Gardner, 2012). These materials were trialled with appropriate stakeholder groups, and made publicly available via the British Council Learn English website.

Planned Impact

Our materials will set a new standard for writing tuition, and will have the potential to change the way the teaching of academic writing is conceived internationally.
The project is unique because it will be informed by a large corpus of authentic proficient student writing across disciplines (the BAWE corpus). The BAWE corpus is the first of its kind, and our materials will be the first to present the major categories of writing identified in this corpus, each of which is associated with several genres. A recent review of twenty popular academic writing textbooks (1) notes the serious lack of materials for teaching many of the genres we have identified; most academic writing textbooks focus on 'essays' and 'reports' to the exclusion of other types of student writing in widespread use in modern English-medium universities.
The corpus analysis and genre classification that has been undertaken for our research project has provided us with an in-depth understanding of the form, purpose and linguistic features of university assignment genres. We will convey this knowledge within the materials we develop, and we expect this knowledge transfer to have a direct impact on universities, by improving the quality of the student experience and rates of retention, raising writing standards, and helping to relieve the pressure on subject tutors who must mark and provide feedback on assignments written by novice student writers. The materials will be made available on the British Council's Learn English website, freely accessible in most countries around the world. We will also make use of the British Council's vast educational networks and facilities to promote take-up of the materials.

(1) Tribble, C. 2009. 'Writing academic English; a survey review of current published resources'. ELT Journal 63/4:400-417.

Publications


10 25 50
Gardner S (2013) A pedagogic and professional Case Study genre and register continuum in Business and in Medicine in Journal of Applied Linguistics and Professional Practice
Nesi H (2013) Spreading the Word: The Challenge of the Corpus as an Agent of Change in Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences
Nesi, H. (2015) Writing for a Purpose
 
Description This follow-on project enables end-users to benefit from the findings of 'An Investigation of Genres of Assessed Writing in British Higher Education' (2004 - 2007 project number RES-000-23-0800). Our objectives were to:

1. raise teachers' and learners' awareness of the types of writing produced by university students, and their linguistic features;

2. create a substantial bank of academic writing materials; accessible via the British Council LearnEnglish website;

3.improve the quality of student writing, thereby increasing students' chances of success and their appreciation of higher education.

For the original study we collected, annotated and analysed almost 3000 good-quality student texts, fairly evenly distributed across four levels of university study and more than 30 disciplines. These texts form the British Academic Written English (BAWE) corpus - see www.coventry.ac.uk/bawe. They are categorized according to their discipline and level, and also according to 13 broad 'genre families', ranging from Case Studies and Essays to Proposals and Methodology Recounts. This categorization is new, and draws attention to the existence of many types of student writing that had previously been neglected in textbooks and course materials concerned with the development of academic writing skills.

We collaborated with the British Council to create online teaching and learning resources based on these genre families and referring to BAWE corpus data - see www.britishcouncil.org/writingforapurpose. The activities take writing purpose as a starting point, help teachers and learners to think about what university writing is for, pay attention to previously neglected genres, and provide links to relevant and authentic examples of proficient student writing.
Exploitation Route The materials are intended for use by learners of English and others who are undertaking or who are about to undertake university study in the medium of English, and who are unfamilar with the conventions of academic writing. They are also intended to be used by tutors of such students.

The materials can be used in class or for individual study, using data projection, desktop computers or mobile devices. The materials are available on the British Council LearnEnglish website http://www.britishcouncil.org/writingforapurpose Information about the materials is also available on the homepage of the LearnEnglish website (http://learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/en) and on the British Council Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=657178454310662&set=a.173457876016058.45254.112763675418812&type=1).
Sectors Education
URL http://learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/en/writing-purpose/writing-purpose
 
Description The Writing for a Purpose materials are widely used by individuals studying or about to start studying at university level in the medium of English. They are also used by university writing tutors, and tutors of English for Academic Purposes. Between its launch on July 8th 2013 and the end of July 2013 there were over 128,000 unique page views to the Writing for a Purpose website, from countries including (but not limited to): Algeria, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Egypt, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Mexico, Pakistan, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, UK, Ukraine, United States and Vietnam.. On July 31st 2013 we held a one-hour question and answer session on the British Council Facebook page, with language learners worldwide who were using or were about to use the Writing for a Purpose materials. This generated 20,000 hits. Since then regular question and answer sessions have been run on our behalf by the British Council LearnEnglish team.
First Year Of Impact 2013
Sector Education
Impact Types Cultural,Societal,Economic
 
Description Academic writing materials: from research to online delivery. Paper presented at the IATEFL Conference, Liverpool 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The talk sparked particular interest in the new discipline-specific keyword lists available on the Writing for a Purpose site.

The talk was featured in several practiitoner blogs, e.g.
http://chrislima90.wordpress.com/2014/04/13/iatefl-presentations-recap/
http://reflectiveteachingreflectivelearning.com/2014/03/30/iatefl-harrogate-2014-what-im-looking-forward-to-and-how-about-you/
http://alannahfitzgerald.org/tag/iatefl/
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Answering the Question: Helping business students to succeed with assessment. TESOL talk in Brazil 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Workshop participants planned a short academic writing course for a business students in higher education. Case Study assignments of the type discussed in Genres across the Disciplines (Nesi and Gardner 2012) and 'A pedagogic and professional Case Study genre and register continuum in Business and in Medicine' (Gardner 2012) were taken as a starting point to discuss the knowledge and skills required of students studying business in the medium of English .

This talk introduced Brazilian ESP/EAP teachers to the BAWE corpus and the Writing for a Purpose materials.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Audio interview with Hilary Nesi and Sheena Gardner 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact An interview with Cambridge University Press after 'Genres across the Disciplines: Student writing in higher education' was chosen as their featured book for January 2012

An audio recording of this interview featured on the Cambridge ELT Teacher Zone website for 12 months, and stimulated purchase of the book 'Genres across the Disciplines: Student writing in higher education', which was one of the major outcomes of the project:
Sales from publication in February 2102 to June 2012
UK - 164
North America - 151
Rest of World - 149
Total - 464 copies
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Balancing old and new activity types on an academic writing website. Paper presented at the BALEAP Conference, University of Nottingham. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This paper explained the process of developing the Writing for a Purpose materials, and gave a preview of the exercise types and their organisation on the British Council site. The talk sparked much discussion.

EAP practitioners were alerted to the materials and were ready to use them when they became available before the major summer EAP programmes later in 2013.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://www.baleap.org.uk/media/uploads/conferences/nottingham-2013/papers-slides/H_Nesi-H_Gardner.pd...
 
Description Citation in student assignments: a corpus-driven investigation. Paper presented at Corpus Linguistics 2013, Lancaster University 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This paper presented the initial findings from a corpus-driven investigation of citation practices in proficient university assignments. Participants were interested in the techniques used to identify citation patterns.


This paper led to discussions with researchers in the Dept. of Foreign Language Education, Bogazici University, Istanbul, who are creating a Turkish corpus using BAWE techniques as a model.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://ucrel.lancs.ac.uk/cl2013/doc/CL2013-ABSTRACT-BOOK.pdf
 
Description Consultant on Hong Kong UG Project 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact I am consultant on a Hong Kong HEC funded project that is using our research from ESRC RES-000-23-0800 to develop materials designed for use at Hong Kogn universities and available freely online to all. In these respects, it is also influenced by ESRC ES/J010995/1. There was a soft launch of the website at three univesities in Hong Kong, attended by a cross section of those involved in the project: Lughmani, S., Gardner, S., Wong, H., Bankowski, E., Chan, L., and Foung, D. 'Supporting and developing students' English literacy practices in the disciplines' Literacy in the Disciplines (LID) Website Soft Launch at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, at City University of Hong Kong, and at Baptist University of Hong Kong, 16th December 2015.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.literacyinthedisciplines.org/
 
Description Developing EAP writing materials for a British Council website 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This talk introduced the Writing for a Purpose materials to Coventry University colleagues from other disciplines. The talk sparked questions from lecturers in other disciplines.

This talk led to the decelopment of an e-book 'Designing Assignment Briefs: A Guide for Lecturers'
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Do you want your students to tell you a story? Paper presented at Storyville: Exploring Narratives of Learning and Teaching, the 2nd annual HEA conference, Brighton 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Participants expressed interest in the genre categorisation system developed from our analysis of the BAWE corpus, and the way genre families are introduced in the Writing for a Purpose materials.

After my talk I discussed the BAWE corpus and the Writing for a Purpose materials with Higher Education subject experts, with a view to encouraging subject lecturers to give more sytematic and explicit assignment briefs.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://wales.heacademy.ac.uk/resources/detail/disciplines/Arts_and_Humanities/Storyville_abstracts_7
 
Description EAP and LearnEnglish: adapting standard British Council exercise types for academic writing skills development 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This talk discussed the process of developing the Writing for a Purpose materials, and the challenge of creating academic writing materials to fit the British Council exercise templates. It provided further input to the design of the materials.

The participants were all involved in the teaching of English for Acadmeic Purposes to international students in UK higher education institutions. The talk persuaded them to use the materials in class with students when they became available.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
URL http://www.baleap.org.uk/pims/list/activity/17/
 
Description Gardner, S. 'A genre-instantiation approach to teaching English for specific academic purposes. Paper presented at the International Conference on the Development of English across the Curriculum Theme: English in the Disciplines Theme. Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, 15th December, 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Conference presentation at an international conference. This presentation led to a journal publication.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Gardner, S. 'Academic writing: From corpus analysis to classroom teaching' Plenary lecture at "Current Issues in Applied Linguistics" conference organized by International Association of Educational Researchers (ULEAD) and the International Association of Research in Foreign Language Education and Applied Linguistics (UDEAD) in collaboration with Bogaziçi University and Canakkale Onsekiz Mart University, Çanakkale, 8-9 May, 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Invited speaker, initiated links with Turkish professionals, led to follow up international visits and conference in 2017.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Gardner, S. 'Chinese and English writers in the BAWE corpus of university student writing. So what?' An invited presentation at the symposium on "Academic writing across languages: multilingual and contrastive approaches in higher education", University Language Centre, Belval campus, University of Luxembourg, 2-3 December 2016. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact An invited talk attended by experts working on academic languages (mostly English/French/German) in university contexts primarily across Europe.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Gardner, S. 'From JEAP to TEAP: The Case of Student Report Writing'. Paper presented at the Biannual BALEAP Conference, University of Leicester, 17-19 April 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact There was a good turnout of EAP teachers for this session which sparked debate around the relationship between research and teaching EAP. The session has been written up and will be published in 2017 in a selection of papers.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Gardner, S. 'The Language of Successful Academic Writing' A Professorial Lecture, Coventry University, 16th March 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact This was a professorial lecture by Sheena Gardner that centered around the two ESRC projects, BAWE and W4AP. It was attended by colleagues and senior managers from across Coventry University, as well as a number of external visitors. There was considerable interest and some uptake from colleagues in other departments.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Gardner, S. Explorations of grammar in the BAWE corpus of academic English. Paper presented at the Grammar and EAP BALEAP PIM, University of St Andrews, 20 June 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact presentation of uses of the project data in teaching; some participants subsequently reported (unsolicited) that they are now using the resources in their teaching
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Gardner, S. Genre-based pedagogy in ESP. Plenary paper presented at the official launch of the Centre for Teaching and Research in ESP, College of Foreign Studies, Nanjing Agricultural University, 9th December 2015. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact One of a series of formal presentations at Nanjing Agricultural University. This one was attended by politicians and ministry officials; others were attended by practitioners in Foreign Studies and in Engineering. They all aimed to celebrate the launch of a new research centre and to position our research within the scope and framework of the centre. The following year a group of practitioners from Nanjing attended a training course at Coventry.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Genres of university student writing: insights from the BAWE corpus. Paper presented at the IATEFL Conference, Liverpool 9-12 April 2013 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This provided practitioners with a preview of the Writing for a Purpose materials, with reference to the categorisation system developed from analysis of the BAWE corpus.

At the talk practitioners requested detaisl of how to access the materials for classroom use. This resuklted in the creation of links to the materials on a number of unniversity websites - see for example http://www.sussex.ac.uk/languages/resources/english/teachers
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
 
Description Harrogate interview with Sheena Gardner and Hilary Nesi 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Sheena Gardner and Hilary Nesi talk about the development of 'Writing for a Purpose' www.britishcouncil.org/writingforapurpose, a set of EAP materials available on the LearnEnglish website. The materials were developed following research into genres in academic writing in UK Higher Education which led to the creation of the British Academic Written English (BAWE) corpus http://www.coventry.ac.uk/bawe, on which 'Writing for Purpose' is based. This interview is on the 'Harrogate Online' pages for the 48th Annual International IATEFL Conference & Exhibition. IATEFL is one of the biggest annual ELT events, attracting delegates from all over the world, many of whom are interested in preparing students for English-medium higher education. The interview explains the goals of the Writing for a Purpose materials and the research findngs that informed their design.

This interview is on the 'Harrogate Online' pages for the 48th Annual International IATEFL Conference & Exhibition. IATEFL is one of the biggest annual ELT events, attracting delegates from all over the world, many of whom are interested in preparing stud
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://iatefl.britishcouncil.org/2014/sessions/2014-04-03/interview-sheena-gardner-and-hilary-nesi
 
Description Initial stakeholder meeting hosted by the British Council 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation workshop facilitator
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact A one-day meeting attended by participants from university language centres, private language schools and publishing houses, together with the Writing for a Purpose team and representatives from the British Council. Participants worked in groups to identify the features they and their students required of the materials, and as far as possible we took these into account during the materials development stage

The stakeholders made a number of suggestions for the materials - see http://cuba.coventry.ac.uk/writingforapurpose/files/2012/04/stakeholder-suggestions-london-march-2012.pdf
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
URL http://cuba.coventry.ac.uk/writingforapurpose/
 
Description Lughmani, S., Gardner, S., Wong, H., Bankowski, E., Chan, L., and Foung, D. 'Supporting and developing students' English literacy practices in the disciplines' Literacy in the Disciplines (LID) Website Soft Launch at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, at City University of Hong Kong, and at Baptist University of Hong Kong, 16th December 2015. 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Soft Launch of Literacies in the Discipines (LID) website whose development has been informed by the BAWE project and inspired by the W4Ap project. Sheena Gardner was consultant on the project, that has extended the reach of the ESRC projects throughout universities in Hong Kong and Singapore.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Progress with interoperability. Paper presented at the BAAL/CUP Seminar 'Discourse and Technology: Tools, Methods and Application' 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This talk presented the Wordtree visualisation of the BAWE corpus. Talk sparked questions and discussion.

The talk resulted in increaed use of the Wordtree corpus interface.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Purposes of Academic Writing from Genre Descriptions to EAP materials online. Paper presented at the College of Foreign Studies, Nanjing Agricultural University 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The talk sparked many questions and much discussion.

After the talk practitioners accessed the Writing for a Purpose materials themselves, and made lesson plans incorporating the website activities.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Purposes of Academic Writing from Genre Descriptions to EAP materials online. Paper presented at the Department of English, Hong Kong Polytechnic University 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Talk sparked questions and discussion.

Participants planned to use the Writing for a Purpose materials in their own unversities.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Real or ideal? What to do when authentic usage looks wrong. Keynote paper presented at Authenticity in EAP, BALEAP PIM, University of Leeds 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This keynote paper addressed the question of whether authentic corpus data (for example from corpora of student speech and writing) necessarily constitutes a good model for learners of English for Academic Purposes. References were made to the BAWE corpus and to the Writing for a Purpose.The talk sparked questions and discussion.

The talk led to greater use of the Writing for a Purpose materials in British EAP contexts.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.baleap.org.uk/pims/list/activity/22/
 
Description Seminar: Why are we writing? Conceptualisations of student writing through the university system and beyond 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Invited talk at Victoria University, New Zealand, to discuss whether university students are misled regarding the purpose of academic writing, an d whether they are prepared in ways that university departments actually require.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.victoria.ac.nz/events/2015/11/why-are-we-writing-conceptualisations-of-student-writing-th...
 
Description Uncovering occluded genres: a role for corpora in LSP. Keynote paper presented at A Roadmap for Languages for Specific Purposes: Multilingualism and ICT's. AELFE (the European Association of Languages for Specific Purposes) annual conference in La Coruña 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This keynote paper discussed the potential of corpora to fill knowledge gaps in LSP practice. It was illustrated with examples from LSP corpora and materials, including the Writing for a Purpose material, linked to the Sketch Engine and Wordtree corpus interfaces. Practitioners expressed interest in the design of the mateirals,

More European teachers and learners started using the Writing for a Purpose materials as a result of this talk.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://193.147.33.53/aelfeingles/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=6&Itemid=13
 
Description Using Student Writing for Business and Engineering Purposes. Part of the Summer Institute on Creative and Discovery-based Approaches to University Undergraduate Writing Programmes, City University of Hong Kong 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This workshop suggested ways that teachers and learners of English for specific academic purposes can use the British Academic Written English (BAWE) corpus and the Writing for a Purpose materials, in and out of the classroom.

Teachers said that they would use the Writing for a Purpose materials in their classes.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.english.cityu.edu.hk/en/portal/summerinstitute2014/speakers.jsp
 
Description Using Student Writing for Business and Engineering Purposes. Presentation and Workshop at the Summer Institute on Creative and Discovery-based Approaches to University Undergraduate Writing Programmes, City University of Hong Kong 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The workhop encouraged discussion about corpus-informed undergraduate teaching in Hong Kong.

After he workshop many more participants used the BAWE corpus and the Writing forr a Purpose materials
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.english.cityu.edu.hk/en/portal/summerinstitute2014/workshops.jsp
 
Description Visualising concordance lines: The Word Tree interface. Paper presented at the 33rd ICAME Conference, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Talk showed the use of the Wordtree corpus interface as a means to present BAWE corpus data in a more user-friendly way

After the talk many participants said that they woudl use the Wordtreee interface for teaching and research.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
URL http://wwwling.arts.kuleuven.be/icame33/_pdf/icame33abstracts.pdf
 
Description What do British engineering students write, and why? Paper presented at The Language of Writing in STEM Disciplines: Transforming the Teaching and Assessment of STEM Writing. 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This symposium was convened as part of the Iowa State University Presidential Initiative for Interdisciplinary Research project called "The Language of Writing in STEM Disciplines." The STEM writing project was launched to develop a network of researchers studying linguistic practices in STEM disciplines, to improve pedagogy of writing in STEM disciplines, and to develop and apply computational methods for analysis and assessment of discipline-specific writing. The symposium brought together researchers who investigate linguistic characteristics and computational analysis of professional/academic and student discipline-specific language and those who examine actual writing practices. My involvement in the symposium as an invited speaker provided an opportunity to explain the rationale for the Writing for a Purpose materials and itroduce them to a North American audience.

Over the two days there were many opportunities to network with academics and research students regarding similarities and differences in writing assessment practices in the UK and North America, and technological advances, for example in automated writign assessment (which we might one day be able to implement on the Writign for a Purpose site).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://stemwriting.engl.iastate.edu/activities/symposium/
 
Description What do British engineering students write, and why? Paper presented at The Language of Writing in STEM Disciplines: Transforming the Teaching and Assessment of STEM Writing. Memorial Union at Iowa State University 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This talk focussed on the writing needs of engineering students, identified through analysis of the BAWE corpus, and gave examples of appropriate materials for engineering students on the Writing for a Purpose website www.britishcouncil.org/writingforapurpose.

Teachers of English for Academic Purposes planned to refer to the BAWE corpus and the Writing for a Purpose materials, especially to support students writing in the STEM disciplines.
Soem participants were involved in the creation ofautomatic writing assessment tools, and there is scope for BAWE to influence developments in this field.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://stemwriting.engl.iastate.edu/abstracts/#what
 
Description What's the point of university assignments? Talk to PG students and staff in the School of Languages, Literature, Culture and Communication, University of Limerick, Ireland. 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This was a workshop with postgraduate students who were preparing to become teachers of English as a foreign language, and staff in the School of Languages, Literature, Culture and Communication . We discussed the BAWE genre categorisations system and the process of developing the Writing for a Purpose materials.

Participants told me they would refer to the BAWE corpus when teaching English for Academic Purposes to international students.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Writing for a purpose: the roles of university assignments with reference to the BAWE corpus. Keynote paper presented at the Birmingham English Language Postgraduate [BELP] conference. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This was a keynote address to a postgraduate conference. Most of the participants were English language teachers, and the event offered an opportunity to discuss how analysis of the BAWE corpus had led to the development of the Writing for a Purpose materials.

Through this talk I made contact with a number of early career practitioners who now work with the corpus and the materials.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
URL https://www.facebook.com/events/231710960241307/?ref=nf
 
Description public lecture Dean of Art's Lecture series University of Auckland 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The talk examined the range of different types of writing students produce for assessment purposes, and the distribution of these types of writing across disciplines and levels of study. Data came from the project 'An Investigation of Genres of Assessed Writing in British Higher Education', which examined thousands of proficient student assignments and proposed a system of categorising them into broad 'genre families', each with a different structure and social purpose.
In higher education written assignment tasks are often described in very loose terms, using nomenclature such as 'essay' and 'report' interchangeably, without distinguishing the features of good writing that characterise different types of text. This is inequitable, because students from non-traditional backgrounds who have not acquired genre knowledge 'by osmosis' during their schooling may lose marks simply because they fail to produce the genre the teacher tacitly requires.
Participants were invited to distinguish between various genre families, identify their social and pedagogic purposes, and consider ways in which genre requirements can be made clearer to students, through tutor talk, materials, and assignment briefs.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.arts.auckland.ac.nz/en/about/events/2015/11/hilary-nesi.html