The effect of the prompt on writing product and process: a mixed methods approach

2.50
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10547/621846
Title:
The effect of the prompt on writing product and process: a mixed methods approach
Authors:
Chapman, Mark Derek
Abstract:
The aim of this thesis is to investigate the effect of the writing prompt on test takers in terms of their test taking processes and the final written product in a second language writing assessment context. The study employs a mixed methods approach, with a quantitative and a qualitative strand. The quantitative study focuses on an analysis of the responses to six different writing prompts, with the responses being analyzed for significant differences in a range of key textual features, such as syntactic complexity, lexical sophistication, fluency and cohesion. The qualitative study incorporates stimulated recall interviews with test takers to learn about the aspects of the writing prompt that can have an effect on test taking processes, such as selecting a prompt, planning a response, and composing a response. The results of the quantitative study indicate that characteristics of the writing prompt (domain, response mode, focus, number of rhetorical cues) have an effect on numerous textual features of the response; for example, fluency, syntactic complexity, lexical sophistication, and cohesion. The qualitative results indicate that similar characteristics of the writing prompt can have an effect on how test takers select a prompt, and that the test time constraint interacts with the prompt characteristics to affect how test takers plan and compose their responses. The topic and the number of rhetorical cues are the prompt characteristics that have the greatest effect on test taking processes. The main conclusion drawn from the study findings are that several prompt characteristics should be controlled if prompts are to be considered equivalent. Without controlling certain prompt characteristics, both test taking processes and the written product will vary as a result of the prompt. The findings raise some serious questions regarding the inferences that may legitimately be drawn from writing scores. The findings provide clear guidance on prompt characteristics that should be controlled to help ensure that prompts present an equivalent challenge and opportunity to test takers to demonstrate their writing proficiency. This thesis makes an original contribution to the second language writing assessment literature in the detailed understanding of the relationships between specific prompt characteristics and textual features of the response.
Citation:
Chapman, M.D. (2016) 'The Effect of the Prompt on Writing Product and Process: A Mixed Methods Approach'. PhD Thesis. University of Bedfordshire.
Publisher:
University of Bedfordshire
Issue Date:
2016
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10547/621846
Type:
Thesis or dissertation
Language:
en
Description:
A thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy
Appears in Collections:
PhD e-theses

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorChapman, Mark Dereken
dc.date.accessioned2016-11-21T11:14:32Z-
dc.date.available2016-11-21T11:14:32Z-
dc.date.issued2016-
dc.identifier.citationChapman, M.D. (2016) 'The Effect of the Prompt on Writing Product and Process: A Mixed Methods Approach'. PhD Thesis. University of Bedfordshire.en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10547/621846-
dc.descriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophyen
dc.description.abstractThe aim of this thesis is to investigate the effect of the writing prompt on test takers in terms of their test taking processes and the final written product in a second language writing assessment context. The study employs a mixed methods approach, with a quantitative and a qualitative strand. The quantitative study focuses on an analysis of the responses to six different writing prompts, with the responses being analyzed for significant differences in a range of key textual features, such as syntactic complexity, lexical sophistication, fluency and cohesion. The qualitative study incorporates stimulated recall interviews with test takers to learn about the aspects of the writing prompt that can have an effect on test taking processes, such as selecting a prompt, planning a response, and composing a response. The results of the quantitative study indicate that characteristics of the writing prompt (domain, response mode, focus, number of rhetorical cues) have an effect on numerous textual features of the response; for example, fluency, syntactic complexity, lexical sophistication, and cohesion. The qualitative results indicate that similar characteristics of the writing prompt can have an effect on how test takers select a prompt, and that the test time constraint interacts with the prompt characteristics to affect how test takers plan and compose their responses. The topic and the number of rhetorical cues are the prompt characteristics that have the greatest effect on test taking processes. The main conclusion drawn from the study findings are that several prompt characteristics should be controlled if prompts are to be considered equivalent. Without controlling certain prompt characteristics, both test taking processes and the written product will vary as a result of the prompt. The findings raise some serious questions regarding the inferences that may legitimately be drawn from writing scores. The findings provide clear guidance on prompt characteristics that should be controlled to help ensure that prompts present an equivalent challenge and opportunity to test takers to demonstrate their writing proficiency. This thesis makes an original contribution to the second language writing assessment literature in the detailed understanding of the relationships between specific prompt characteristics and textual features of the response.en
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherUniversity of Bedfordshireen
dc.rights.urihttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/*
dc.subjectwriting productsen
dc.subjectmixed methodsen
dc.subjectwritingen
dc.subjectlanguage assessmenten
dc.subjectlanguage testingen
dc.subjectQ110 Applied Linguisticsen
dc.titleThe effect of the prompt on writing product and process: a mixed methods approachen
dc.typeThesis or dissertationen
dc.type.qualificationnamePhDen_GB
dc.type.qualificationlevelPhDen
dc.publisher.institutionUniversity of Bedfordshireen
This item is licensed under a Creative Commons License
Creative Commons
All Items in UOBREP are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.