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    Performance in the citing behavior of two student writers

    Harwood, N. and Petrić, Bojana (2012) Performance in the citing behavior of two student writers. Written Communication 29 (1), pp. 55-103. ISSN 0741-0883.

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    This article reports the results of an interview-based study which investigated the citation behavior in the assignment writing of two second-language postgraduate business management students, Sofie and Tara. Discourse-based interviews were used to elicit the students’ own perspectives on their citation behavior in two of their assignments. Citations were one of the ways in which Sofie and Tara enacted performance (Goffman, 1959), aiming to create a favorable impression on the assignment markers. Both students made sure they cited key sources on their reading lists, whether they found the texts helpful or not, because they understood that lecturers required evidence that these sources had been consulted. Both writers also cited a large number of sources, whether they had read these sources carefully or not, to perform the industrious student who reads widely. By ensuring the same sources which had been discussed in class were cited in her writing, Tara was able to perform the attentive student who listened carefully to lectures and seminars. Sofie sometimes tailored what she cited to fit her markers’ perceived interests and ideological standpoints, in an attempt to align her own stance with what she felt would be the stance of her markers and thus gain their favor. Implications of using Goffman’s notion of performance to explore student writers’ citing behavior are discussed. The pedagogical implications of the study for subject-specific lecturers and for EAP teachers are also addressed.


    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Creative Arts, Culture and Communication
    Depositing User: Bojana Petric
    Date Deposited: 06 Jul 2015 08:28
    Last Modified: 09 Aug 2023 12:36


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