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Student and instructor perceptions of the L2 writing-for-reading process

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Title: Student and instructor perceptions of the L2 writing-for-reading process
Author(s): Sterling, Jacqueline
Advisor(s): Crane, Corinne
Department / Program: Germanic Languages & Lit
Discipline: German
Degree Granting Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree: M.A.
Genre: Thesis
Subject(s): reading-writing process reading strategies integrated writing tasks
Abstract: Building on current research about the reading-writing connection, this study examines the writing-for-reading process in the context of foreign language instruction. The central research question which guides this study is: How do intermediate second language (L2) learners of German engage with and manipulate an original source text when composing a creative writing task? To understand the extent to which integrated reading-writing tasks support reading abilities, this study analyzes student and instructor reports about their understandings of the writing-for-reading process. Participants (86 university students and 4 instructors) from two intermediate-level foreign language (FL) German courses completed voluntary questionnaires. Four students also participated in a one-hour focus group to elaborate on their experiences composing a written narrative based on a source text. These questionnaires elicited information from students about specific strategies they utilized while writing as well as their perceived learning outcomes. Instructors’ perceptions of the writing-for-reading process were also examined so as to provide a comparative view to the students’ reports. The two-phase methodology applied in this study allowed for both quantitative and qualitative analysis of the results. According to student reports, most students relied on various reading strategies, such as rereading or skimming during the writing process. Some students noted that referring back to the source text helped them better comprehend certain aspects of the story. They also utilized vocabulary strategies, such as identifying and looking up unfamiliar words. It was uncommon, however, for students to actively search for vocabulary from the text to incorporate in their writing. The majority of students also did not engage in planning or problem-solving strategies, such as creating an outline, discussing ideas with classmates, or consulting the instructor. The findings from the questionnaire and the focus group suggest that creative reading-writing tasks can facilitate literacy development as students move between their own work and the source texts. This study contributes to emerging research in the field of L2 writing and offers several pedagogical implications about how to strengthen the writing-for-reading process.
Issue Date: 2012-05-22
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2142/31004
Rights Information: Copyright 2012 Jacqueline Sterling
Date Available in IDEALS: 2012-05-22
Date Deposited: 2012-05
 

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