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Investigating The Writing Process Of College EFL Learners With Different Levels Of English Proficiency: From Multi-Data Sources

Posted on:2007-01-02Degree:MasterType:Thesis
Country:ChinaCandidate:J LiuFull Text:PDF
GTID:2155360242962943Subject:Foreign Linguistics and Applied Language
Abstract/Summary:PDF Full Text Request
Second language writing is a complex, recursive and problem-solving process, which involves thinking in conscious and goal-directed episodes. The development of the second language writing research has gone through two remarkable stages. In early years, the final written product was the most important concern. In the past decade or two, there was a paradigm shift from product to process. An increasing number of studies have emerged to report details of second language learners'cognitive process while writing. However, the results are too mixed to yield consistent conclusions and very few studies to date have examined the writing process of EFL learners with different levels of language proficiency, let alone in the context of Chinese EFL learners. Moreover, most of the previous studies adopted think-aloud protocols to elicit data from participants. Criticisms over this traditional approach have been made by more and more researchers.The present study is designed to investigate the writing process of Chinese EFL learners of different English proficiency levels. Eight undergraduate English majors with two different levels of English proficiency (less-skilled and more-skilled) performed an argumentative writing. Multiple data sources were used, including stimulated recall protocols, videotaped writing processes, questionnaire and written compositions. Through both quantitative and qualitative analysis, participants were compared in terms of behaviors in pre-writing planning, while-writing pausing and post-writing revision and the adoption of various writing strategies.The results revealed that (1) both more-skilled and less-skilled writers switched to L1 for planning before starting to write. More-skilled writers conducted a detailed overall organization whereas less-skilled writers made a less global plan; (2) more-skilled writer paused less frequently than less-skilled writers while composing; (3) more-skilled writers emphasized most on vocabulary and mechanics in post-writing revising, while less-skilled writers preferred contents and organization; (4) more-skilled and less-skilled writers used almost the same number of writing strategies in total and English proficiency appeared to explain part of the differences in concrete strategy use between the two groups.It is suggested that teachers should make students aware of the general characteristics of English writing process and help weak writers become more efficient in writing with regard to their writing strategies such as telling them that verbatim translating and over-strict outlining may do harm to the development of writing ability and encouraging them to use strategies concerning audience and evaluation. More studies with a larger sample and different types of wring over time are needed to deepen the study of L2 writing development.
Keywords/Search Tags:Writing process, writing strategy, English proficiency
PDF Full Text Request
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