Online-Based L2 Writing Courses and Practicing Metacognitive Strategies: Teacher-Regulated or Individualized?
Keywords:essay writing, explicit teaching, ndividualized practices, metacognitive strategies, online writing
Research findings show the usefulness of employing metacognitive strategies in writing classes. However, the approach toward teaching the strategies is not mainly addressed. The present study investigated the impact of two methods on metacognitive strategies in an online writing course. In doing so, 20 intermediate EFL learners (n1=n2=10) in two classes were randomly assigned to two treatment conditions. A sample of the IELTS test administered at the onset of the study verified the participants’ homogeneity regarding English proficiency. In one group, Teacher-regulated Metacognitive Instruction (TRMI), the teacher taught metacognitive strategies during the different stages of writing tasks. In the second group, Individualized Metacognitive Practices (IMP), the teacher did not teach the metacognitive strategies and only had a facilitating role. The learners used a questionnaire (Zhang & Qin, 2018) to practice the strategies. After the treatment, the groups sat for a writing posttest and answered a metacognitive strategies questionnaire. The independent samples t-test revealed that the IMP outperformed the TRMI in argumentative essay writing. The frequency count obtained from the respondents’ answers to the questionnaire showed that IMP used more strategies in the three levels of planning, monitoring, and evaluating. The study has implications for EFL/ESL teachers and scholars interested in reflective practices.
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