Managing Divergence in EFL Doctoral Education of a Chinese University

Hongbing Peng


The present interview study was a part of a larger investigation which was chiefly made in 2010. Its purpose is to examine and manage the divergence perceived in the supervisory relationship by doctoral students and their supervisors in terms of the aims and academic views of the doctoral program in EFL research supervision of a Chinese university. Discourse System (DS) proposed by Scollon and Scollon (2000) is applied to guide the analysis of the study as an interpretive framework. 11 doctorates and 12 doctoral supervisors participated in the research. The results showed that the program was felt demanding by the students due to a number of factors. The students were particularly expected to have “revolution in one’s soul” experience which they did not hope for out of realistic considerations. The results also indicated that academic views were in conflict because of differences in research aims, areas and interests between the two sides. The study suggests that the supervisory relationship is hierarchical as a result of lack of mutual negotiation and concerns of group harmony. The form of professional tutoring is proposed to manage divergence in the EFL doctoral education in the end.

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Studies in Media and Communication      ISSN 2325-8071 (Print)   ISSN 2325-808X (Online)

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