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Volume 8 Number 2, Summer 2011, Pages 1-210   

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Effects of Task Design on EFL Learners' Written Language Performance

    Massoud Rahimpour, Faezeh Mehrang, Pakhshan Hosseini

Task structure as a task characteristic is believed to have a considerable effect on task performance in terms of accuracy, fluency and complexity. Studies in the literature focused on investigating task structure impact on oral out-put; however, this study examines how written task performance is affected by task structure. Thirty two EFL learners were selected for data collection. Each participant, then, narrated two tasks which differed with regard to their inherent structure (tight vs. loose). Collected data were coded and checked for measuring their accuracy, fluency and complexity. Findings of the statistical analysis revealed that structured tasks produced more fluent and complex performances while accuracy remained unaffected. Results have practical implications for language teaching, research and syllabus design.

Keywords: task-based language teaching, task structure, tightly structured task, loosely structured task, written task performance