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Thursday, August 13 • 3:45pm - 4:35pm
Effects of the Corrective Feedback of an AWE Tool on Developing FL Learners' Writing Skill and Their Learner Autonomy

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The effective design and use of automated writing evaluation (AWE) tools in developing English as a foreign language (EFL) learners’ writing proficiency and learner autonomy have remained great challenges for AWE designers, developers, and language instructors. In China, the earliest practice of computer-assisted language learning (CALL) for educational purposes can be traced back to the Long Distance Education program at the turn of the century. Since 2004, a series of large-scale top-down reforms on the teaching of college English have encouraged instructors to employ language technologies in practice and the “computer- and the classroom-based multimedia teaching model” was highly recommended in College English Curriculum Requirements (China’s Department of Higher Education, 2007). Until recent years, some AWE tools have been developed and implemented for assessment purposes in EFL teaching in China. However, the rapid growth of AWE tool classroom implementation has often accompanied with fierce discussion and opposition. This study aims to investigate the effects of the corrective feedback function of Pigai system (a web-based AWE tool which has more than 4,000,000 users over 1,600 universities and schools in China) through a mixed-method approach. The presenters will demonstrate how the system has been integrated into the authors’ EFL courses from the following aspects: the system in actual use in both classroom and off-class contexts; some samples of formative track records of different level students’ writing scripts from three semesters; research data including those from students’ pre- and post tests scores and the followed-up surveys. Finally, some issues and problems with the system design and development as well as teaching design reflected from the system implementation will also be discussed. The presenters hope to provide AWE designers and developers with some innovative suggestions, and to shed light on the theory-based teaching design and effective use of AWE tools in EFL contexts.


Li, Xiaowei

Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications

Lu, Zhihong

Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications

Thursday August 13, 2015 3:45pm - 4:35pm
CGIS South S020 (Belfer Case Study Room) 1730 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA