Tracing the learning of academic literacy in a literature foundation course

  • Jennifer Stacey


Competence in academic literacy is still the main route to access and achievement within the university. First year students are expected to learn a number of discipline specific academic literacies with frequently conflicting and unarticulated uses of academic conventions. Through the analysis of the introductory paragraphs of one student in a literature foundation course, this article focuses on whether and how this student copes with the different demands presented by the simultaneous learning of different academic literacies. The analysis provides information about how this student built her understanding of academic literacy and her strategies for learning. The examination of her techniques and the need to explain why they are appropriate or not in a literature essay forced reflection on the thinking in the discipline that underlies such judgements.


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Author Biography

Jennifer Stacey
Dr Jennifer Stacey is a lecturer at the School of literature and language studies, University of the Witwatersrand.E-mail: