A netnography of emergent ESOL researcher identity and development in a virtual community of practice

Julian Chen, Vincent Troy Greenier* (Corresponding Author), Sasha Janes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


For emerging researchers, communities of practice (CoPs) can be a much-needed source of knowledge and support, particularly during a global pandemic. Within this context, a virtual CoP (VCoP) project was initiated for novice researchers in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)/Applied Linguistics worldwide to exchange perspectives and academic knowledge. Guided by netnography, our study explores the social, cultural, and professional practices of VCoP through multiple digital sources, such as webinar recordings, Facebook group posts, reflective journal entries, and one-on-one interview. The triangulated data aims to examine the effects of virtual mentorship on the agency, engagement, and identity construction of an emerging researcher. Findings illustrate that a VCoP facilitates international networking, fosters the repositioning of ESOL researcher identity, and promotes agency through virtual mentoring. Specifically, netnography opens a viable avenue for remote data mining in Applied Linguistics research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-291
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Applied Linguistics
Issue number2
Early online date18 May 2023
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jul 2023

Bibliographical note

This research was funded by the Research and Innovation Support Program (RISP) at the School of Education, Curtin University.

Data Availability Statement

The data that support the findings of this study are available on request from the corresponding author. The data are not publicly available due to privacy or ethical restrictions.


  • higher degree by research
  • identity
  • mentoring
  • netnography
  • virtual community of practice


Dive into the research topics of 'A netnography of emergent ESOL researcher identity and development in a virtual community of practice'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this