Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Existing research about FAL

As I continue to conceptualize my 'history of FAL' project I am thinking more about how to situate the course and my research (and figure out a research question that is both interesting to me/my field and granting agencies).

One thing I'm interested in is "what do stakeholders in FAL think it is?" In other words, what kind of course is it, what is the purpose of the course, etc. (There was a 2009 PhD study done on a similar topic though it was different than what I intend to do; more later on that.)

As it turns out there is already a fair amount of research or other relevant stuff related to the course out there. My own background inclines me, as I said earlier, to position FAL as a 'basic writing' course, but thus far there is nothing in the literature that draws on this, really. 

As far as I can see there are two streams of research, which may reflect the way the course has shifted. The first stream is more rooted in what I would call the 'softer' side of writing studies, e.g., narrative, voice, expressionist writing, etc. This mostly can be traced to the influence of the faculty member who first created the course. The second is more rooted in applied linguistics and EAP, with a bent toward UK-style "academic literacies" theorizing. This is probably due to the influence of the faculty member who began running it soon after. It is possible that we could be entering a "new" phase of FAL in which it is positioned in discourses of EAP/EAL in the multilingual/international university. My biases incline me to draw connections to translingual writing but it's too early to predict that.

 Here's what I'm finding so far, arranged chronologically:

Mamchur, C. & Apps, L. (2008). A personal path to self-efficacy. English Quarterly Canada, 38(2/3), 65-75
C Murray MA - not a ton  on FAL, but it includes an interesting description.
In Search Of An Intersubjective Storytelling Voice: An Ethnographic Narrative Across Two Continents

Shaw, C.D. (2009). Finding voice in the border space: An examination of the foundations of academic literacy course at simon Fraser university (PhD thesis)

Scott, C. (2010, May). Literacies of the (situated) self, others, and surrounding ecologies: Towards an ecological model of literacy. Published, peer-reviewed proceedings of the University of Victoria Conference on Literacy--Language & Literacy 2.1: Transforming Literacy Conceptions. Available at

Walsh Marr, J. (2011). Exploring identity formation and academic writing of multilingual students: Skipping through the academy (MA thesis)

Lee, E., & Marshall, S. (2012). Multilingualism and English language usage in “weird” and “funny” times: A case study of transnational youth in Vancouver. International Journal of Multilingualism, 9(1), 65–82.

Marshall, S. & Moore, D. (2013). 2B or Not 2B Plurilingual? Navigating Languages Literacies, and Plurilingual Competence in Postsecondary Education in Canada. TESOL Quarterly, 47(3), 472–499.

Hayashi, H. (2013). Becoming a student: Multilingual university students' identity construction in Simon Fraser University\

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