EFL writers' social networks: Impact on advanced academic literacy development

Orna Ferenz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


For non-native English writers, second language (L2) advanced academic literacy encompasses knowledge of the rhetorical, linguistic, social and cultural features of academic discourse as well as knowledge of English as used by their academic disciplines. Literacy is acquired through a socialization process embedded in social practice, patterned by social institutions [Barton, D. & Hamilton, M. (1998). Local literacies: Reading and writing in one community. London: Routledge] and interactions between learners and their academic discourse community members. These interactions may also be identified as a writer's social network, which, in turn, may influence the writer's attitude to second language academic literacy acquisition. Adopting a social network perspective, this paper poses two questions: (1) What type of relationships do English as a Foreign Language (EFL) graduate students form in order to develop L2 academic literacy? (2) What impact do these relationships have on students' acquisition of L2 academic literacy and writing. The results suggest that the composition of a writer's social network affects L2 advanced academic literacy acquisition and practice as disciplinary communication. Implications for FL practitioners are considered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-351
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of English for Academic Purposes
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2005


  • Advanced academic literacy
  • English for academic purposes
  • Second language writing
  • Social networks


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