Composing strategies reported by high and low achievers in the TOEFL-iBT integrated task: implications for investigative pedagogy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The teaching of composing strategies is acknowledged to be an important area in writing instruction and test preparation. This study presents a small set of data originating from a larger project which investigated the composing strategies reported by 30 international postgraduate students. These students were in their second year of university study and had all volunteered to attempt the TOEFL-iBT writing test. Immediately after completion of each task, they were interviewed about the way they had understood the requirements of the tasks and the processes and strategies they had used in order to complete them. All the students had successfully obtained entry to university and were functioning satisfactorily in their current areas of study, yet the scores they achieved in the TOEFL writing assessment showed considerable variation. Surprisingly, some were well below the benchmark for university entry. In order to investigate this, we revisited and reanalysed the interview data gathered from the three top and three bottom scorers, and examined similarities and differences in the way they approached and undertook the task. The high scorers' goals for task completion focused on the product as well as the process, and in contrast to the low scorers their monitoring strategies involved interaction with the emerging text. While we acknowledge that actual differences in language proficiency may have been partially responsible for the different scores, in this paper we explore the possible role of strategy choice, and we consider implications for test preparation teaching and writing instruction in general.
LanguageEnglish
Pages129-160
Number of pages32
JournalWriting and Pedagogy
Volume10
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Sep 2018

Fingerprint

writing instruction
university
student
Teaching
monitoring
interaction
interview
language

Keywords

  • second language writing
  • Writing strategies
  • teaching second language writing
  • test preparation
  • TOEFL
  • integrated test tasks
  • composing
  • academic writing

Cite this

@article{7be599f7ff1049f4903ec9321eda22be,
title = "Composing strategies reported by high and low achievers in the TOEFL-iBT integrated task: implications for investigative pedagogy",
abstract = "The teaching of composing strategies is acknowledged to be an important area in writing instruction and test preparation. This study presents a small set of data originating from a larger project which investigated the composing strategies reported by 30 international postgraduate students. These students were in their second year of university study and had all volunteered to attempt the TOEFL-iBT writing test. Immediately after completion of each task, they were interviewed about the way they had understood the requirements of the tasks and the processes and strategies they had used in order to complete them. All the students had successfully obtained entry to university and were functioning satisfactorily in their current areas of study, yet the scores they achieved in the TOEFL writing assessment showed considerable variation. Surprisingly, some were well below the benchmark for university entry. In order to investigate this, we revisited and reanalysed the interview data gathered from the three top and three bottom scorers, and examined similarities and differences in the way they approached and undertook the task. The high scorers' goals for task completion focused on the product as well as the process, and in contrast to the low scorers their monitoring strategies involved interaction with the emerging text. While we acknowledge that actual differences in language proficiency may have been partially responsible for the different scores, in this paper we explore the possible role of strategy choice, and we consider implications for test preparation teaching and writing instruction in general.",
keywords = "second language writing, Writing strategies, teaching second language writing, test preparation, TOEFL, integrated test tasks, composing, academic writing",
author = "Murray, {Jill C.} and Riazi, {A. Mehdi}",
year = "2018",
month = "9",
day = "25",
doi = "10.1558/wap.30570",
language = "English",
volume = "10",
pages = "129--160",
journal = "Writing and Pedagogy",
issn = "1756-5839",
publisher = "Equinox Publishing Ltd",
number = "1-2",

}

Composing strategies reported by high and low achievers in the TOEFL-iBT integrated task : implications for investigative pedagogy. / Murray, Jill C.; Riazi, A. Mehdi.

In: Writing and Pedagogy, Vol. 10, No. 1-2, 25.09.2018, p. 129-160.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Composing strategies reported by high and low achievers in the TOEFL-iBT integrated task

T2 - Writing and Pedagogy

AU - Murray,Jill C.

AU - Riazi,A. Mehdi

PY - 2018/9/25

Y1 - 2018/9/25

N2 - The teaching of composing strategies is acknowledged to be an important area in writing instruction and test preparation. This study presents a small set of data originating from a larger project which investigated the composing strategies reported by 30 international postgraduate students. These students were in their second year of university study and had all volunteered to attempt the TOEFL-iBT writing test. Immediately after completion of each task, they were interviewed about the way they had understood the requirements of the tasks and the processes and strategies they had used in order to complete them. All the students had successfully obtained entry to university and were functioning satisfactorily in their current areas of study, yet the scores they achieved in the TOEFL writing assessment showed considerable variation. Surprisingly, some were well below the benchmark for university entry. In order to investigate this, we revisited and reanalysed the interview data gathered from the three top and three bottom scorers, and examined similarities and differences in the way they approached and undertook the task. The high scorers' goals for task completion focused on the product as well as the process, and in contrast to the low scorers their monitoring strategies involved interaction with the emerging text. While we acknowledge that actual differences in language proficiency may have been partially responsible for the different scores, in this paper we explore the possible role of strategy choice, and we consider implications for test preparation teaching and writing instruction in general.

AB - The teaching of composing strategies is acknowledged to be an important area in writing instruction and test preparation. This study presents a small set of data originating from a larger project which investigated the composing strategies reported by 30 international postgraduate students. These students were in their second year of university study and had all volunteered to attempt the TOEFL-iBT writing test. Immediately after completion of each task, they were interviewed about the way they had understood the requirements of the tasks and the processes and strategies they had used in order to complete them. All the students had successfully obtained entry to university and were functioning satisfactorily in their current areas of study, yet the scores they achieved in the TOEFL writing assessment showed considerable variation. Surprisingly, some were well below the benchmark for university entry. In order to investigate this, we revisited and reanalysed the interview data gathered from the three top and three bottom scorers, and examined similarities and differences in the way they approached and undertook the task. The high scorers' goals for task completion focused on the product as well as the process, and in contrast to the low scorers their monitoring strategies involved interaction with the emerging text. While we acknowledge that actual differences in language proficiency may have been partially responsible for the different scores, in this paper we explore the possible role of strategy choice, and we consider implications for test preparation teaching and writing instruction in general.

KW - second language writing

KW - Writing strategies

KW - teaching second language writing

KW - test preparation

KW - TOEFL

KW - integrated test tasks

KW - composing

KW - academic writing

UR - https://journals.equinoxpub.com/index.php/WAP/article/view/30570

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85062780987&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1558/wap.30570

DO - 10.1558/wap.30570

M3 - Article

VL - 10

SP - 129

EP - 160

JO - Writing and Pedagogy

JF - Writing and Pedagogy

SN - 1756-5839

IS - 1-2

ER -