Exploring the Conceptions of Academic Reading Comprehension by Iranian Graduate Students of Applied Linguistics

Document Type: Research Paper


1 Kharazmi University

2 Department of Foreign Languages Kharazmi University

3 Department of Foreign languages, Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran.


Although the importance of reading in higher education as an index of success has been highlighted, the metacognitive knowledge or beliefs of graduate students have remained under-researched. This qualitative study reports on a study that, first, examines how graduate students of applied linguistics conceive of academic reading and academic readers in their graduate programs; second, what factors they believe can contribute to the development of those self-conceptions; and, third, if there was the possibility of adding a course on academic reading to their MA programs, how they would judge the advantages and disadvantages of such a course. In so doing, in-depth interviews were conducted with 31 graduate students at eight different universities. The findings revealed considerable changes in the participants' conceptions as the result of taking part in their graduate programs. They attributed those self-conceptions to their efforts and struggles as well as their teachers' help and guidance. Their perceptions of an academic reading course were positive. Pedagogical implications are discussed.


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