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Volume 18 Number 2, Summer 2021, Pages 390-744   


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EFL Undergraduate and Graduate Learners' Views on a Writing Intensive Online Subject Matter Course

    Kiwan Sung


This classroom-based qualitative case study is to illustrate how an English as a subject matter course is taught and examine 17 EFL undergraduate and post-graduate learners' experiences in and views on their content learning as well as weekly activities in a 15 week-long online course. The participant engaged in doing weekly readings, listening to PPT-based lectures, writing thought papers (TPs) and revising them based on instructor and peer feedback, and joining weekly discussion activities. According to analyses of the data such as learners' weekly writings, instructor and peer feedback, online discussion posts on an LMS, and an informal mid-term survey and final–self-evaluation, the students had various levels of positive experiences and difficulties due to course demands. Regarding disciplinary specific writing assignments, they valued instructor feedback and considered important focusing on logical flow and coherent organizational structure in addition to appropriate use of such linguistic elements as word choice, vocabulary and grammar. The results of this case study of embedding intensive writing in a disciplinary course shed important pedagogical insights on how to strike balance between teaching subject matter content and ‘writing to learn' as well as ‘learning to write'.

Keywords: process-oriented writing, disciplinary specific writing, teacher & peer feedback, online course, action research