An Investigation into the Use of a Blog as a Tool to Improve Writing in the Second Language Classroom

| August 9, 2011
Title
An Investigation into the Use of a Blog as a Tool to Improve Writing in the Second Language Classroom

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Authors
Susan Blackmore-Squires
University of Manchester

Abstract
Several research studies concur that the use of a blog can positively enhance writing skills. Research has confirmed positive uses of the blog which include writing for an audience and peer review, the development of a student s analytical skills and the development of a sense of community in a class through a collaborative learning environment.

This dissertation presents the results of a small scale action research project which was undertaken in order to investigate the impact the use of a blog could have as a tool for improving writing in the second language classroom. It was carried out at a further education college in the north west of England with Level two ESOL learners.

The data which was obtained from questionnaires and interviews completed with the students throughout the academic year 2009 2010, and also from comments made on the blog that was used in the classroom, reveal that the students responded positively to the use of the blog. It was found that the blog helped them to improve their writing through the collaborative learning environment that was established and through the process approach to writing that was adopted. There was general agreement that writing for an audience and peer review contributed to the development of the collaborative learning environment and this was conducive to developing writing skills. This has clear and significant implications for teaching and learning strategies in the second language classroom and opens up interesting opportunities for second language teachers to explore when planning the development of their students writing skills.

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Category: Thesis