Transformation of Western Academic Conventions in Russia: a Case Study of Higher School of Economics, Faculty of Law
Internationalization of the modern system of education poses multiple challenges for students. Not only does this process provide them with new opportunities, such as continuing education abroad at the master’s level, but it also establishes requirements to be aware of the academic conventions different from those they learn at the bachelor’s level at a Russian university. Awareness of academic conventions implies not simply theoretical knowledge of the Western higher education system but also acquisition of practical tools that will facilitate students’ ability to integrate their knowledge into a new academic environment. One of the most essential tools for students is undoubtedly academic English. However, academic English skills development frequently leads to the situation that can be metaphorically called ‘dual academic personality,’ when students have to be able to quickly switch from one academic style to another depending on the educational context. Firstly, this paper will examine differences between Russian and Western academic writing conventions (focusing on the requirements to a BA research project), Then main difficulties and typical mistakes in academic legal writing in English made by Higher School of Economics students will be analyzed.