Vol 4 No 2 (2018)

Published: 2018-10-27

Editorial Section

Editorial Introduction

Betsy Gilliland, Grant Eckstein

Featured Articles

“They Said I Have a Lot to Learn”: How Teacher Feedback Influences Advanced University Students’ Views of Writing

Dana R Ferris

This study examines the relationship between students’ memories of feedback received from teachers about their writing and their attitudes toward/enjoyment of writing.  Over 8500 survey responses were collected from advanced undergraduate students in a large university writing program. A question about the characteristics of teacher feedback received by student respondents was examined both quantitatively and qualitatively (optional verbal comments were categorized according to themes), and then responses to a different survey question about students’ attitudes toward writing were statistically compared with their memories of teacher feedback. Responses to the teacher feedback and writing attitudes questions from different student subgroups (analyzed by first language backgrounds and by when they matriculated at the university) were also compared statistically. Results showed that students have had a wide range of reactions, some positive and some negative, to teacher feedback, and that there is a strong relationship between their self-reported enjoyment of writing and how they have experienced teacher feedback. It was also clear that multilingual students (both bilingual and second language English writers) have more negative attitudes towards writing in general and less positive experiences with teacher feedback.

Student Perceptions of Dynamic Written Corrective Feedback in Developmental Multilingual Writing Classes

Kendon Kurzer

In this project, I investigated student perceptions of Dynamic Written Corrective Feedback (Evans, Hartshorn, McCollum, &Wolfersberger, 2010), a specific method of providing accuracy feedback, in developmental writing classes for multilingual students. Via a quasi-experimental design using treatment and control sections of this developmental writing program’s three levels, I collected and contrasted survey data from a total of 145 students. I then interviewed three students (one international and two generation 1.5) representing a range of perceptions of DWCF. Participants generally appreciated and valued DWCF, especially as a complement to a grammar textbook, and students of classes that used DWCF reported higher scores on most survey items, such as quality of grammar feedback and general class instruction. I also present students’ pedagogical suggestions for better integration of DWCF in writing classes.

Affective Tensions in Response

Nicole I. Caswell

This article reports on a research study focused on understanding the relationship between teachers’ emotional responses and the larger contextual factors that shape response practices. Drawing from response and emotion scholarship, this article proposes affective tensions as a way for understanding the tug and pull teachers experience between what they feel they should do (mostly driven from a pedagogical perspective) and what they are expected to do (mostly driven by an institutional perspective) in a contextual moment. The case study of Kim offers an analysis of two affective tensions that emerged from her think-aloud protocol: responding to grammar/sentence errors over content and responding critically to students she likes. Kim’s case reveals the underlying affective tensions between individual emotions, cultural constructions, and institutional contexts that are being negotiated while she is responding to student writing. This article concludes with suggestions for identifying emotions and affective tensions that both influence and paralyze writing teachers’ response practices.

Teaching Articles

Online Peer Review Using Turnitin PeerMark

Mimi Li

Online peer review has been increasingly implemented in composition and second language classes. This article reports on a pedagogical practice in which students used the PeerMark module of Turnitin to conduct peer response in a first-year writing class. In this study, students drew on multiple PeerMark functions (i.e., commenting tools, composition marks, and PeerMark questions) and provided feedback on their peers’ summary and response papers. Analyses of archived PeerMark records revealed that students provided constructive feedback in multiple aspects and the majority of peer comments were later incorporated into students’ revisions through different ways. This report expects to encourage teachers to implement peer review using Turnitin in their classrooms and further explore the role of technologies for peer review.

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