chapter  7
14 Pages


I began this book with the assertion that written assessment is the principal way in which both L1 and L2 English undergraduate students are judged during their university studies (Douglas, 2010; Hewings, 1999; Lea, 2004; Leki and Carson, 1994; Lillis, 2001; Lillis and Scott, 2008; Nation, 2008; North, 2005b). However, despite the importance of assessed undergraduate writing, relatively little research has been carried out in this area. This lack of research is particularly apparent for NNS undergraduate writing, with most studies of L2 writing drawing on corpora of very short essays rather than authentic texts produced in the context of regular assessment tasks. Since Chinese students now comprise the largest cohort of international undergraduates in the UK (HESA, 2014), I have argued that more research into their writing is particularly needed, and hope that this study goes some way towards filling the gap.