Writing a Manuscript-Style Dissertation in TESOL/Applied Linguistics
Keywords:Thesis and Dissertation Writing, Academic Discourse, Academic Writing, Genre, English for Academic Purposes
This paper draws on autoethnographical insights and genre analysis in offering an introductory guide for writing a manuscript-style master’s level thesis or doctoral dissertation in TESOL and Applied Linguistics fields. We report on our own recent experiences writing, defending, and preparing for publication from our own manuscript-style dissertations during and following our doctoral study, both conducted at the same major Canadian research university. While other work in TESOL and Applied Linguistics areas have addressed the manuscript-style format amidst more general discussions of thesis and dissertation writing (e.g., Paltridge, 2002; Paltridge & Starfield; 2007), this article concentrates specifically on the unique characteristics of this dissertation structure and the genre-features, processes, and considerations around planning, composing, presenting, and publishing in this format. The intended audience of this paper is primarily graduate students and supervisors in TESOL and Applied Linguistics, although other stakeholders involved in graduate-level writing across various disciplines can also benefit from our discussion. Our central goal in writing this article is therefore to provide an introductory discussion regarding the nuances inherent in this format of dissertation compared to other traditional monograph forms.
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