Textual appropriation in two discipline-specific undergraduate writings
Research has explored how scholars use citations to write intertextually across disciplines but have rarely compared how students, especially undergraduates, appropriate source texts in their writing in arts versus sciences. This study explores textual appropriation and source use in disciplinary writing of second language undergraduates in a North American university. Two samples of undergraduate writing were analyzed. One is a biology paper written by Cary to summarize a scientific concept or statement, and the other is an essay in Film Studies written by Martin on a topic of his own choosing. Text-based interviews were conducted to solicit participants’ comments and explanations of how they used source texts in completing the two specific disciplinary writing tasks. Results suggest different citing behaviors between the two students in terms of the types of sources they used (textbooks, monographs, and non-reading sources), the format of textual borrowing (quoting versus paraphrasing), and reasons for citing and not citing (e.g., to use others’ words or ideas versus expressing one’s own ideas or knowledge). The paper ends with an example of an assignment designed to help students explore how to make citation decisions in disciplinary writing.
Barrett, A. (2005). The information-seeking habits of graduate student researchers in the humanities. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 31, 324-331.
Bazerman, C. (1994). Constructing experience. Carbondale and Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University Press.
Bouville, M. (2008). Plagiarism: Words and ideas. Science and Engineering Ethics, 14, 311–322.
Currie, P. (1998). Staying out of trouble: Apparent plagiarism and academic survival. Journal of Second Language Writing, 7, 1-18. doi:10.1016/s1060-3743(98) 90003-0.
Dong, Y. R. (1996). Learning how to use citations for knowledge transformation: Non-native doctoral students' dissertation writing in science. Research in the Teaching of English, 30, 428-457.
Dubois, B.L. (1988). Citation in biomedical journal articles. English for Specific Purposes, 7, 181–193. doi: 10.1016/0889-4906(88)90015-4.
Flowerdew, J., & Li, Y. (2007). Language re-use among Chinese apprentice scientists writing for publication. Applied Linguistics, 28(3), 440-465. doi: 10.1039/applin/amm031.
Garfield, E. (1980). Is information retrieval in the arts and humanities inherently different from that in science? Library Quarterly, 50 (1), 40-57.
Harwood, N. (2009). An interview-based study of the functions of citations in academic writing across two disciplines. Journal of Pragmatics, 41, 497-518. doi: 10.1016/j.pragma.2008.06.001.
Harwood, N., & Petrić, B. (2012). Performance in the citing behavior of two student writers. Written Communication, 29, 55-103. doi:10.1177/0741088311424133.
Hirvela, A. & Q. Du (2013). ‘Why am I paraphrasing?’: Undergraduate ESL writers’ engagement with source-based academic writing and reading. Journal of English for Academic Purposes 12.2, 87–98. doi:10.1016/j.jeap.2012.11.005.
Hyland, K. (1999). Academic attribution: Citation and the construction of disciplinary knowledge. Applied Linguistics, 20, 341-367. doi: 10.1093/applin/20.3.341.
Hyland, K. (2012). Disciplinary identities: Individuality and community in academic discourse. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Hyland, K. (2013). Faculty feedback: Perceptions and practices in L2 disciplinary writing. Journal of Second Language Writing, 22, 240-253. doi: 10.1016/j.jslw.2013.03.003.
Leki, I. (2007). Undergraduates in a second language: Challenges and complexities of academic literacy development. New York: Routledge.
MacDonald, S. P. (1994). Professional academic writing in the humanities and social sciences. New York: Southern Illinois University Press.
Mansourizadeh, K., & Ahmad, U. K. (2011). Citation practices among non-native expert and novice scientific writers. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 10, 152-162. doi: 10.1016/j.jeap.2011.03.004.
McCullough, M., & Holmberg, M. (2005). Using the Google search engine to detect word-for-word plagiarism in master’s theses: A preliminary study. College Student Journal 39.3, 435–441.
Pecorari, D. (2006). Visible and occluded citation features in postgraduate second-language writing. English for Specific Purposes, 25, 4–29. doi:10.1016/j.esp.2005.04.004.
Pecorari, D., & Petrić, B. (2014). Plagiarism in second-language writing. Language Teaching, 47(3), 269-302. doi: 10.1017/S0261444814000056.
Pennington, M. C. (2010). Plagiarism in the academy: Towards a proactive pedagogy. Writing & Pedagogy, 2, 147-162. doi: 10.1080/ 07294360600610438
Petrić, B. (2007). Rhetorical functions of citation in high- and low-rated master's thesis. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 6, 238-253. doi: 10.1016/j.jeap.2007.09.002.
Prior, P. A. (1998). Writing/Disciplinarity: A sociohistoric account of literate activity in the academy. Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Rinnert, C. & H. Kobayashi (2005). Borrowing words and ideas: Insights from Japanese L1 writers. Journal of Asian Pacific Communication 15.1, 15–29. doi: 10.1177/1473325005058643.
Samraj, B. (2008). A discourse analysis of master's theses across disciplines with a focus on introductions. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 7, 55-67. doi: 10.1016/j.jeap.2008.02.005.
Selwyn, N. (2008). ‘Not necessarily a bad thing . . . ’: A study of online plagiarism amongst undergraduate students. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education 33.5, 465–479.
Shi, L. (2010). Textual appropriation and citing behaviours of university undergraduates. Applied Linguistics 31, 1–24. doi:10.1093/applin/amn045.
Shi, L. (2011). Common knowledge, learning and citation practices in university writing. Research in the Teaching of English, 45, 308-333.
Shi, L. (2012a). Rewriting and paraphrasing source texts in second language writing. Journal of Second Language Writing, 21, 134-148. doi: 10.1016/j.jslw.2012.03.003.
Shi, L. (2012b). Originality of expression and formal citation practices: Perceptions of students and professors. Writing & Pedagogy, 4, 43-67. doi: 10.1558/wap.v4i1.43. jul. 2012.
St. John, M. (1987). Writing processes of Spanish scientists publishing in English. English for Specific Purposes, 6, 113–120. doi: 10.1016/0889-4906(87)90016-0.
Sun, Y.-C. (2013). Do journal authors plagiarize? Using plagiarism detecting software to uncover matching text across disciplines. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 12, 264-272. doi: 10.1016/j.jeap.2013.07.002.
Thompson, C. (2005). ‘Authority is everything’: a study of the politics of textual ownership and knowledge in the formation of student writer identities. International Journal for Educational Integrity, 1(1), 1–12.
Thompson, P. (2005). Points of focus and position: intertextual reference in PhD theses. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 4, 307-323. doi:10.1016/j.jeap.2005.07.006.
Weintraub, K. J. (1980). The humanist scholar and the library, Library Quarterly, 50 (1), 22–39.
© Equinox Publishing Ltd.
For information regarding our Open Access policy, click here.