A pedagogical attempt at integrating EFL creative writing into an English-mediated Linguistics module in Mainland China
The Asian Journal of Applied Linguistics. Volume 3. Issue 2. October 2016


EFL creative writing
disciplinary contexts
writer voices
sociocognitive view
knowledge construction

How to Cite

Zhao, Y. (2016). A pedagogical attempt at integrating EFL creative writing into an English-mediated Linguistics module in Mainland China. The Asian Journal of Applied Linguistics, 3(2), 137–154. Retrieved from https://caes.hku.hk/ajal/index.php/ajal/article/view/394


This qualitative L2 writing study presents a contextualised response to the movement of Creative Writing Across the Curriculum. A story-writing assignment is implemented in an introductory Linguistics module as an alternative medium for knowledge-construction. The task offered the Chinese students the opportunity to utilise some recently acquired semantics knowledge for purposeful and idiosyncratic construction of a short story in English. 110 stories were collected and examined using a sociocognitive view of “writer voices”, seeing voices as arising from the negotiation between the writer and various forms of knowledge in the context, such as the target subject knowledge and the convention of narratives. In order to look for creative modes of knowledge application and examine how the student writers’ applications of the target semantics invoke or deviate from established and culturally-rooted cognitive structures (i.e. “schema”) the stories were initially examined by corpus linguistics techniques and then manual and hermeneutic coding. Three general tendencies stand out: the stories show 1) strategic, 2) conventional and 3) creative applications of the target semantics knowledge. Subsequently, focal students were interviewed individually. Six focal cases are included here, illustrating characteristic negotiations between the writer and certain symbolic resources. Overall, the study holds implication for how EFL creative writing assignments might help stimulating Chinese students’ knowledge-making potential in a subject context.


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