New Genres in the Academy: Issues of Practice, Meaning Making and Identity

Lea, Mary R. (2012). New Genres in the Academy: Issues of Practice, Meaning Making and Identity. In: Castello, Montserrat and Donahue, Christiane eds. University Writing: Selves and Texts in Academic Societies. Studies in Writing (24). Emerald Group Publishing Ltd, pp. 93–109.


This chapter foregrounds the changing context of higher education and, in relation to this, explores the potential value of taking an academic literacies perspective to help understand more about new writing spaces in the academy. It draws on data from a research project with university lecturers who are taking a postgraduate certificate in academic practice. It raises questions about the inherent tension between professional practice-based knowledge and a theorised written assessment of that knowledge as this space is negotiated and contested by different participants, both those who teach on the course in question and those who study it. It examines how - in addition to disciplinary identities - different experiences of writing before starting the course, values about writing in relation to professional identity and the models of writing associated with specific professional fields all suggest a contested space for writing.

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