1st Edition

The TESOL Research Training Journey Voices from International PhD Students

By Shen Chen, Thi Thuy Le Copyright 2021
    190 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    190 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Research training is challenging, and the attrition rate of doctoral students has been increasing in Canada, the UK, the USA and Australia. In their book, Chen and Le examine the reasons for these students becoming demotivated, particularly in the context of TESOL. There has been much investigation into research training issues in multiple contexts and multiple disciplines. Yet, the research training process in TESOL for international students has not been explored sufficiently, and their voices have not been heard. This book gives voice to the research trainees, allowing their experiences to be reflected and the implications discussed in order to help create more effective supervision models.

    By employing the qualitative approach and adopting critical incident as a new technique for data collection, Chen and Le attempt to gain insights into the research training process to reveal different research stages of research trainees—those undertaking PhD degrees—and to put forward a model of supervision to improve the innovation and quality of research. This book tackles the complex nature of research training. It is hoped that findings of this study can provide research supervisors and trainees with theoretical insights and practical references.

    1. Introduction 2. Doctoral Research Training 3. International PhD Students 4. Research Design and Method 5. Cultural Adaptation 6. Academic Transformation 7. Emotional Challenges 8. Personal Wellbeing 9. Conclusion Epilogue


    Shen Chen is a multilingual teacher educator in School of Education at University of Newcastle, Australia. He had taught at Melbourne University and Deakin University in Australia before he moved to University of Newcastle in 1993. Since then, he has been a research fellow and a visiting professor at Cambridge University and Warwick University, UK; the University of California, Berkeley, USA; the University of British Columbia, Canada; and the University of Hong Kong. His contribution has been in the teaching of and research in language and culture and second language teacher education. He was the recipient of the Australian National Teaching Award in 2014 for his contribution to international PhD supervision.

    Thi Thuy Le awarded a PhD (Education) degree at the University of Newcastle, Australia, in 2017. She worked as TESOL lecturer at the University of Languages and International Studies, Vietnam National University of Hanoi, Vietnam, from 2007 to 2018. Her research interests and publications lie in the areas such as teaching culture, English as an international language (EIL), intercultural communication, EFL teacher education, curriculum development and research training. She was awarded a Solidarity Award at the 18th AILA Conference in 2017.

    "This book makes a valuable contribution to our understanding of the complexity of international TESOL students’ graduate training experience in Western, English-speaking countries. It focuses on the linguistic, pedagogical, cultural, and psychological challenges faced by these international students with a view to facilitating and enhancing their academic experience and personal well-being. Drawing on solid empirical data, the book proposes a new, humanistic model of graduate supervision that promises to tide them over such challenges. As such, it is a timely addition to an emerging literature on cross-border graduate education that provides an insightful and thought-provoking account of what international graduate students encounter and experience interculturally in their academic journey." - Guangwei Hu, Professor of Language and Literacy Education, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

    "This volume addresses the unique contemporary demand for research-based resources to enhance the teaching of English to speakers of other languages. Appropriately, the volume is authored by scholars who have themselves experienced the journey of acquiring advanced competence in English from starting-points in Asian languages and cultures. It also draws on extensive research on Asian students who have conducted their PhD research in the field of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) in five Western native English-speaking countries.

    The significant contribution made by this book to the field of TESOL PhD supervision is its strong presentation of a trainee centered view and leads towards an enhanced model of supervision as a process of human development. I would recommend this book to any international student contemplating the study of a TESOL PhD in a Western English-speaking university. It provides invaluable advice drawing on a respectful consideration of the expressed experience of many who have gone before. The book should also be essential reading for persons being trained to supervise such students." - Ian Malcolm, Emeritus Professor, Edith Cowan University, Western Australia.