Graduate Transitions

Canadian Master's and PhD Writing Experiences


  • Jordan Stouck
  • Lori Walter



This exploratory study researches the experiences of Canadian graduate students as they pursue writing tasks for their degree. It also explores the supports currently utilized by such students and the need for additional supports. The research uses a case study design based on qualitative focus group interviews to provide detailed information regarding graduate students' perceived experiences with their academic writing tasks and available supports. The approach is informed by academic literacy theory. Graduate students who participated in this study identified a transition in voice, increased pressure to publish and professionalize, and misalignments between their own and supervisory and institutional expectations, which resulted in some interrogation of institutional norms. They utilized Writing Centre, online and supervisory supports, but called for additional ongoing and peer support. The study has implications for the development of new, collaborative and peer-based writing supports, as well as identifying future research areas related to interdisciplinary degrees.




How to Cite

Stouck, J., & Walter, L. (2020). Graduate Transitions: Canadian Master’s and PhD Writing Experiences. Discourse and Writing/Rédactologie, 30, 264–289.



Major Article