Growing pains: graduate students grappling with English medium instruction in Kazakhstan

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Abstract

This study investigates graduate students’ experiences with English medium instruction (EMI) in Kazakhstan. The data reported here were collected through an online survey conducted in 10 public and private universities in Kazakhstan in March–July 2021. This survey received a total of 320 responses from graduate students with diverse age, gender, disciplinary, educational, and linguistic profiles. Through a combination of closed and open-ended ques- tions, we aimed to determine how graduate students coped with EMI in their programs. We found that most respondents are strug- gling with various aspects of academic reading and writing. Low English proficiency is often cited as a cause of these struggles, but so are specific elements of academic writing. Inadequate socializa- tion in English together with gaps in existing language and writing support are also seen as factors. Overall, the data confirm the existence of deep ecological tensions between policy aspirations and enactment conditions on the ground.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAsian Englishes
Publication statusPublished - Sept 20 2022

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