Karpenko-Seccombe, Tatyana (2016) Supporting international PhD writers – are pastoral duties part of the package? International Student Experience Journal (ISEJ), 4 (1). pp. 10-16. ISSN 2397-3072

This article aims to examine the experiences of international PhD students, highlight problems specific to these students, and outline potential solutions. The paper is based on my experience of teaching, observation and informal conversations with such students (Arabic, East-Asian, and, to a lesser degree, European) over a six-year period of teaching English for Academic Purposes (EAP). First, I argue that doctoral students constitute a distinct group of learners for academic, language, social, and psychological reasons. I base this conclusion on my own experience of teaching PhD students, but this view is also supported by literature. In this article I discuss problems specific to this group, often connected with the change of their social role from lecturer to student, cultural differences in academic relationships, language insecurities, separation from the family and loneliness.

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