Effect of the Holistic Approach on the Quantity and Quality of EAP Students' Writing
Education Resources Information Center (ERIC), USA 2004
14 Pages Posted: 11 Dec 2013
Date Written: 2004
The main purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of the holistic approach, as compared to the segregated-skill approach, on the quantity and quality of EFL students' academic writing. The subjects for the study were 64 graduates enrolled in the Special Diploma in Education at the School of Education in Suez during the second semester of the 2001/2002 academic year. These subjects were randomly divided into two equal groups: an experimental group and a control group. At the beginning of the experiment, the two groups were pretested on academic essay writing. Following pretesting, students in both groups were taught by the researcher, at the rate of one session per week. In the experimental group, students were randomly assigned to groups of four. In each session, each group member read a research paper or an article of interest to him/her in the area of curricula and instruction and then discussed what he/she read with other members of the group. S/he then wrote a summary or an abstract of what he/she read in his/her own words and read it loudly to other members of the group. In the control group, students were taught the academic writing subskills using the direct instruction approach. The study lasted for twelve weeks, one session per week. At the end of this period, all subjects were post-tested on academic essay writing. After that, the quantity and quality of each essay were scored independently from each other. The obtained data were analyzed using the t-test. The results showed no significant difference in the mean scores between the two groups on the pretest. The post-test results revealed that students in the experimental group scored significantly higher than those in the control group on the quantity of writing,, but lower on the quality of writing. This suggests that a combination of both the holistic approach and the segregated-skill approach can boost students' writing above the levels that occur with either alone.
Keywords: Holistic Approach; Writing skills; Educational Theories; Pretests Posttests; Teaching Methods
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