Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 15. Number 1, March 2024                                             Pp. 117-131

A Contrastive Investigation into the Non-native Speakers of English Academicians’ Academic Writing Cognitions and Challenges in the First and Second Languages

Department of Foreign Languages
Kahramanmaraş Sütçü İmam University, Kahramanmaraş, Türkiye

Corresponding Author:

Department of English Language Teaching
Ataturk University, Erzurum, Türkiye


Academic writing has been a focal point for research inquiry in the first and second languages. The present study aims to investigate non-native speakers of English writers’ knowledge, opinions, and preferences regarding academic writing in the first and second languages for publications and to identify the possible challenges these writers meet in their research articles in the first and second languages. The results will help academicians be aware of difficulties in the article sections and challenges in language use to overcome these problems and alleviate their recent experiences since they may be influenced negatively during the writing and publishing of an article. Therefore, this study contributes to the field because the implications may guide academicians while they write. A convergent-parallel design of mixed method designs was adopted. Data were obtained from structured questionnaires filled out by 440 participants and semi-structured interviews conducted with 30 participants. SPSS 21.0 was used to analyze the quantitative data using descriptive statistics and inferential analyses. Content analysis was used to analyze the qualitative data. The results showed that the academicians felt more confident when they wrote in their first language. The academicians had positive views about academic writing since they had self-confidence, self-motivation, and awareness of their academic status requirements.  The abstract and results were the most manageable sections of the research articles, while the discussion section was slightly challenging. These academicians had more language use awareness in their first language. The study underlined the advantages and necessity of explicit AW instruction.
Keywords: academic publication, academic writing, academic writing challenges, cognition of academic writing,
second language writing, research articles 

Cite as:

CANLI, Z., & YAĞIZ, O. (2024). A Contrastive Investigation into the Non-native Speakers of English Academicians’ Academic Writing Cognitions and Challenges in the First and Second Languages. Arab World English Journal, 15(1): 117-131.


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Zeynep Canlı is an instructor at Kahramanmaraş Sütçü İmam University, Department of Foreign Languages in Türkiye. Her research interests are teaching writing and all aspects of L2 writing, especially academic writing.


Oktay Yağız is an Associate Professor at Atatürk   University, Department of English Language Teaching in Türkiye. His research interests are English academic writing and educational research studies.  He also teaches at undergraduate and graduate levels. ORCID ID: