Valuing individual consultations as input into other modes of teaching


  • Kate Chanock La Trobe University


individual consultation, evaluation, discipline cultures


While Academic Language and Learning (ALL) advisers evaluate our work in a variety of ways, an emphasis on quantifying outcomes may mean that the value of individual teaching is seriously underestimated. This is because a large part of its value, in its institutional context, is as input into the development of other modes of teaching. Individual consultations (ICs) allow us to understand students’ good reasons for bad writing, on the basis of which we can design sympathetic, richer, and more relevant learning experiences for larger groups of students. This article discusses the reasons why ICs as input are likely to be under-reported and, from the author’s ICs, records a variety of insights gained into student problems at the levels of word choice, sentence structure, paragraphing, and referencing. It suggests that many of these problems stem from students’ lack of awareness of the discipline cultures that generate the questions, tasks, and literacy practices which puzzle them. The article refers to pedagogy and curriculum the author has developed to address these problems, and concludes by urging ALL advisers to highlight the contribution of ICs to their other modes of teaching when evaluating their work.




How to Cite

Chanock, K. (2007). Valuing individual consultations as input into other modes of teaching. Journal of Academic Language and Learning, 1(1), A1-A9. Retrieved from



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