An assessment of academic writing needs of graduate students

Akcaoğlu, M. Öztürk
This study mainly aimed at investigating the academic writing needs and writing self-efficacy beliefs of graduate students studying at an English-medium university, Ankara. Furthermore, such areas that have a crucial role in determining writing needs as the frequency of writing tasks, usefulness of written sources, perceived importance of academic writing, and role of Turkish while writing were explored. In this study, quantitative data via “Academic Writing Needs Assessment Survey for Graduate Students” were collected from 213 graduate students enrolled at Graduate School of Social Sciences. Descriptive statistics, exploratory factor analysis, and multiple regression analyses were employed to analyze the data. The results of descriptive statistics indicated that the graduate students need a wider vocabulary repertoire in order to cope with the challenges of academic writing and they are mostly assigned longer research papers. In addition, using journal articles published in the area of specialization during writing was the most common method and more than half of the graduate students stated that when stuck with finding the right word, they first look for a Turkish word first. The exploratory factor analysis produced two factors and the regression analyses were carried out. The results yielded that the predictors accounted for 24% of the variance in productivity-related academic writing needs, and 22% of the variance in accuracy-related academic writing needs. For the productivity-related academic writing needs, writing self-efficacy and academic status made a significant contribution and for the accuracy-related academic writing needs, writing self-efficacy and English proficiency exam score were significant.
Citation Formats
M. Ö. Akcaoğlu, “An assessment of academic writing needs of graduate students,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2011.