Providing ‘auxiliary’ academic writing support to postgraduate students: a socio-cultural approach
This paper describes and justifies the conceptualisation and adoption of a socio-cultural approach to academic writing support which was part of the inception of a broader orientation programme in a newly established Centre for Postgraduate Studies at a research intensive South African university. The role of writing support is considered in relation to the increasing pressure being placed on academic writing in higher education, in light of growing demands to increase postgraduate student outputs. The paper argues for the use of an ‘academic literacies’ approach for the initial conceptualisation of a writing support programme that accommodated both discipline knowledge as well as the linguistic experiences of the students. The paper provides conceptual insights which may contribute to the literature on this topic in South Africa and stimulate further debate.
Keywords: Academic literacies, academic writing support, postgraduate, socio-cultural, South Africa, best practice