e-ISSN 2231-8542
ISSN 1511-3701

Home / Regular Issue / JTAS Vol. 20 (4) Dec. 2012 / JSSH-0691-2012


Enhancing ESL Students Academic Writing Skills through the Term-Paper

Rafik-Galea, S., Nalini Arumugam and Geraldine de Mello

Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science, Volume 20, Issue 4, December 2012

Keywords: Term-paper, multi-drafting, feedback, reflection, recursive process

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Tertiary ESL students find writing the academic term-paper a complex process as they grapple with issues about academic writing conventions and ethics. This paper examines tertiary students' thoughts and perceptions in co-constructing knowledge about academic writing and how multi-drafting and feedback strategies enhance their academic literacy skills through term-paper writing. In particular, we examine the use of the term-paper as a pedagogical instrument incorporating the process approach to writing for developing academic writing skills among tertiary level students in Malaysia including the importance of multi-drafting, where students reflect on the writing of the multi-drafts and evaluate their learning while working in groups. The respondents are 38 Diploma in Business Management students from a Malaysian university enrolled in an academic writing course. Focus group interviews, group observations and respondents reflective journal entries provided the qualitative data. Our findings show that group multi-drafting and feedback processes enhanced students understanding of writing as a recursive process and sharpened their academic writing literacy knowledge in the areas of referencing, planning, idea generation, editing and revising. We conclude that the multi-draft term-paper approach as a pedagogical tool seems to be a feasible solution to heightening the academic writing skills and confidence of tertiary students.

ISSN 1511-3701

e-ISSN 2231-8542

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