This book documents the results of a multi-year project that investigated the goals for writing improvement among 45 students and their instructors in intensive courses of English as a Second Language (ESL) then, a year later, in academic programs at two Canadian universities. The researchers present a detailed framework to describe these goals from the perspectives of the students as well as their instructors. The goals are analyzed for groups of students from particular backgrounds internationally, for changes over time, and in relation to the ESL and academic courses. The authors use activity theory, goal theory, various sociolinguistic concepts, and multiple data sources (interviews, observations, stimulated recalls, questionnaires, and text analyses) to provide a contextually-grounded perspective on learning, teaching, writing, second-language development, and curriculum policy. The book will interest researchers, educators, and administrators of ESL, university, college, and literacy programs around the world.