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Evaluation of Word Processing for ESL Writers

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Title:Evaluation of Word Processing for ESL Writers
Authors:Pennington, Martha C.
Contributors:University of Hawaii at Manoa. Department of English as a Second Language. (department)
Date Issued:1990
Abstract:This paper offers an assessment of the promise and problems for ESL of computerassisted writing using word processing. Both positive and negative effects reported in the published literature in ESL and native-speaker composition are reviewed, and the attempt is made to find explanations for the differing results of individual studies. In addition to the inherent properties of the medium, methodological and context effects are identified which help to account for the differential findings. These effects are attributable to variation across studies in one or more of the following variables: (a) the nature of the subjects, (b) the abilities and attitudes of teachers, (c) the setting for computer use, (d) the time-span of the research, (e) the type and amount of training for use of the software, (f) the instructional format for computer use, (g) the biases introduced by particular word processing software, and (h) the effectiveness measures applied to evaluate results. Considering the needs of ESL students in the area of writing and the results that can be predicted for word processing based on the nature of the computer medium, it is concluded that use of word processing seems justified as a medium for enhancing the creative revision process of ESL students, and recommendations are offered for pedagogy and research in ESL contexts.
Pages/Duration:37 pages
Appears in Collections: Working Papers (1982-2000)

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