PhD Scholarship Position in Communication and Language Collaborative Writing in Engineering Education

Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden is inviting excellent students to apply for a PhD position in engineering education. The initial contract for this position is five years. Applicants should apply before March 20, 2020.

PhD position with a focus on collaborative writing and writing-related practices in engineering education

Information about the project and the division

The topic of the current PhD project is collaborative writing in engineering education. A great deal of writing in higher education is today done collaboratively, and collaborative writing has also been studied quite extensively. Still, several aspects of collaborative writing in higher education remain under-researched, for instance students' writing development from participating in multiple writing groups at university and comparisons of collaborative writing in different university settings. Knowledge about these topics has potential to greatly influence the design of writing assignments and the organisation of collaborative writing at university. The project hence opens up for research within an important and highly stimulating research area.

- students' perceptions of their own learning in collaborative writing groups, both in terms of writing and disciplinary content,

- what roles students adopt in different writing groups,

- students’ learning of disciplinary writing from participating in different writing groups in different courses,

- the organisation and writing-related practices of collaborative writing in different educational contexts and how that may influence students’ learning of writing and disciplinary content,

- writing-related practices (such as peer response) and how these may influence text revision in collaborative writing groups.

The proposal should outline how the applicant would address these topics in a research project. It will be possible to put more emphasis on some questions in the project, so the proposal should outline which perspectives the applicant considers interesting and how these perspectives would be studied. We are looking forward to applications that show the applicant’s motivation and commitment to investigating the topics suggested.

The PhD position will be placed at the Division for Language and Communication at the Department of Communication and Learning in Science. The division’s research is situated in the intersecting spheres of higher education pedagogy, scholarship of teaching and learning, communication pedagogy and didactics, applied linguistics, and internationalization and diversity. The division's vision is one of promoting the integration of content and language in higher education (ICLHE), typically with a focus on writing (including Writing Across the Curriculum and Writing in the Disciplines) or (where English is used as a medium for teaching) English Medium Instruction (EMI). Within this context, the division works with language for academic and specific purposes and also moves in spheres of English as a second or foreign language as well as English as a lingua franca. Additional research work is oriented towards applied linguistics, corpus linguistics, and studies in genre-based writing (with a notable focus on self-regulation and metacognition).

Major responsibilities

Your major responsibility as a PhD student is to pursue your own doctoral studies related to the project. This includes developing scientific concepts and communicating research results both verbally and in writing. Your research activities will contribute to enhanced knowledge in the scientific field, in particular by presenting your results in scientific journals and at international conferences.

In addition to the research project, you will also enroll in courses at the advanced level within the graduate school. The position also includes departmental duties, such as teaching, corresponding to approximately 20% of your working time.

Full-time temporary employment.The position is limited to a maximum of five years.


- A Master's degree in: Applied Linguistics, Technical Communication, Writing Studies, Integrating Content and Language in Higher Education, Educational Linguistics, Education with a focus on communication, or degrees equivalent to the ones listed here.

- A research-oriented mindset in tandem with a strong desire to learn about collaborative writing

- Good knowledge of, and interest in, qualitative research methods; experience with quantitative research methods is a merit

- Experience of teaching in higher education (particularly of teaching collaborative writing groups).

- Fluency in English is required; proficiency in Swedish is clearlyadvantageous as some of data collected may be in Swedish. Proficiency in other languages is also considered advantageous.

- An ability to work independently as well as cooperatively.

Chalmers offers a cultivating and inspiring working environment in the dynamic city ofGothenburg.

Read more aboutworking at Chalmersand ourbenefitsfor employees.

Application procedure

The application should be marked with Ref 20200082 and written in English.

CV: (Please name the document: CV, Family name, Ref. number)


Other, for example previous employments or leadership qualifications and positions of trust.

Two references that we can contact.

Personal letter: (Please name the document as: Personal letter, Family name, Ref. number)

- Introduce yourself

- Describe your previous research fields and main research results

- Describe your future goals and future research focus

Copies of bachelor and/or master's thesis.

Attested copies and transcripts of completed education, grades and other certificates, eg. TOEFL test results.

- In addition to the CV, the personal letter and other supporting documents, each applicant is required to submit a tentative project proposal of one to two (max 2) A4 pages, excluding references. The document should be titled “Project proposal”. The proposal should articulate – in broad terms – the kind of research project the applicant would be interested in conducting and why (focusing on purpose, methods, possible results and the potential significance of those results). When writing the proposal, it is important that the applicant takes into consideration the general direction of the research field as advertised.

Application deadline: 20 March, 2020

Associate Professor Andreas Eriksson, CLS/Division for Language and Communication


Phone: +46 31 7725851

Associate Professor Hans Malmstrm, CLS/Head of Research/GraduateEducation



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