At LSE, the majority of academic writing by students is done in a second or even third language. In order to use English successfully as an academic lingua franca, LSE’s MSc and PhD students need to develop their language abilities in English. More than this, though, they need to develop accurate expectations about the conventions of disciplinary academic writing and the conduct of research in this academic culture. Dissertation and thesis writing tends to be an area of study where these challenges are acutely felt. Thesis and Dissertation Writing in a Second Language: A Handbook for Supervisors, by Brian Paltridge and Sue Starfield, offers an overview of research into second language acquisition in educational contexts, as well as guidance on how supervision might be structured, and how individual guidance can be focussed on relevant aspects of these text types. (The link is to publisher’s listing, but it allows readers to look inside and to order inspection copies.)

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