The lack of Chinese influence in Australian educational research:Decolonizing doctoral education through postmonolingual research methods

Year: 2019

Author: Singh, Michael

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

This study in situated in reference to the important public debates about the influence of elites from Australia and Zhongguó (?? also known as China) are having in co-constructing relations. However, the role of Zhongwén (?? also known as Mandarin) in knowledge production and dissemination appears, in official policies at least, to be less evident. Arguably, as Zhongguó continues to improve its multilingual capabilities in doctoral education, and strengthens its capabilities knowledge production and dissemination more generally, universities providing English-only instruction and research are likely to be at a disadvantage in terms of the number of international students they can recruit and their power to influence disciplinary fields. The aimof this study was to develop an approach decolonizing doctoral education through exploring the possibilities for postmonolingual research methods. The concept ‘postmonolingual research methods’ refers to the contradictions arising from Australian universities continual assertion of, and investment in doctoral education being pursed only through academic English in the face of candidates’ capabilities for producing and disseminating knowledge in multiple languages. In terms of research design, evidence is drawn from theses, publications; examination feedback, and the work of other researchers who have had the will to engage with the idea of postmonolingual research methods. This study found that three key pedagogical moves are relevant to postmonolingual research methods: announcing to candidates possibilities for postmomolingual research; questioning candidates at key points in the research process about the prospects for postmomolingual research; and verifying candidates’ attention to researching postmomolingually. Further, it was found that postmonolingual research methods explore the divergence in languages to advance original contributions to knowledge in significant fields of education. Future studies of, and studies undertaken using postmonolingual research methods have the potential to change doctoral education, moving it beyond the prevailing monolingual approach.