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Title:Interdiscursive process of academic literacy socialization: A qualitative inquiry of Korean ESL students in a U.S. MBA program
Author(s):Kim, Jung Yin
Director of Research:Dyson, Anne H.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Dyson, Anne H.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Harris, Violet J.; Bresler, Liora; Sadler, Randall W.
Department / Program:Curriculum and Instruction
Discipline:Curriculum and Instruction
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Academic success
Academic Socialization
Master of Business Administration (MBA)
Abstract:This dissertation reports findings from a qualitative analysis of the academic literacy socialization of five Korean graduate students in a U.S. MBA (Master of Business Administration) program as they progressed through their first two academic quarters of their education. The study specifically examines the academic literacy practices that take place in three literacy sites: a marketing course, a business ethics course, and peer study group meetings. In doing so, the main purpose is to investigate the contesting discourses around the notion of academic success that emerge in the focal students’ social interactions among themselves, other students and instructors. Drawing from the scholarship on second language academic socialization, academic literacy, and New Literacies this study was an eight-month long qualitative investigation of how five Korean graduate students conceptualized the meaning of academic success in the MBA program as they participated in the various academic literacy practices. The sources of data include students’ written work, audio recordings of group and individual interviews, student peer study group meetings, classroom observations, extensive field notes and qualitative interviews. This study’s results suggest that the students’ socialization is a complex and multilayered process in which students individually and collaboratively negotiate the meaning of academic success through engaging in interactive dialogues both inside and outside of the classroom. Based on the results, I argue that the students’ notion of academic success is defined along the lines of business-related knowledge that go beyond merely language skills. Students with such knowledge are valorized by the instructor and given legitimacy as “academically successful” students in and outside the classroom. This discourse is rationalized through an interdiscursive process (Agha, 2005) in which specific communicative events (e.g. academic literacy events, and storytelling events that valorize the successful international student’s field knowledge) that occur in different spaces and timescales become linked to the students’ here-and-now learning space. This interconnection shows how the meaning of academic success that is attached to past communicative events unfolds in present time, thus showing how events at distant places in the past are invoked and connected with the students’ present academic literacy practices. Thus, the power of interdiscursivity demonstrates the complex and accumulative nature of students’ academic socialization processes. Based on these dialogues, I hope to extend the continuous study on academic literacy socialization processes of graduate ESL students by considering the complex ways students negotiate and make sense of their target academic literacy practices to become “competent” students in their field of study.
Issue Date:2014-05-30
Rights Information:Copyright 2014 Jung Yin Kim
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-05-30
Date Deposited:2014-05

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