L2 Students Use of Rhetorical Consciousness Raising Instructional Materials in Writing Research Articles

| September 20, 2011
L2 Students Use of Rhetorical Consciousness Raising Instructional Materials in Writing Research Articles

Keywords: rhetorical conscious raising instruction (RCRI); genre-based approach; schematic
structure; rich language features; text; topic map-based e-learning (TMBEL) syste

Shu-chin Yen
Department of English, Wenzao Ursuline College of Language, Taiwan, ROC

Bio Data
Shu-chin Helen Yen is currently an assistant professor in the English Department at Wenzao Ursuline College of Languages in Taiwan. Her research interests lie in genre-based writing instruction, intercultural communication, World Englishes and language learning strategies.

This study proposes to explore L2 undergraduate use of three types of rhetorical consciousness raising instruction (RCRI) materials during the process of research writing. These instruction materials are schematic structure, rich language features, and text. All the participants received the RCRI in class through extensive instruction on each type of the RCRI materials. To better probe how the participants interacted with these types of RCRI materials, they were requested to interact with the RCRI materials stored on the topic map-based e-learning (TMBEL) system during their process of writing and to say aloud what they were thinking as they processed the RCRI materials. The participants interaction with the TMBEL system and their think-aloud data were recorded. At the end of the experiment, a semi-structured interview was conducted to triangulate the data. Results indicated (1) text was the type of RCRI materials that students visited most during their writing process; rich language features, the least; (2) schematic structure was the first type of RCRI materials that most students referred to before they began to write, (3) communicative purpose of each move, the linguistic components signaling transitions between moves, mechanistic elements and rich language features were students learning focus, (4) students held positive opinions toward the RCRI materials, and (5) RCRI materials effectively lowered students writing anxiety. Findings emerging from the results suggest that mapping structural concepts are most students strategy when writing research articles, schematic structure and text are two interweaving types of RCRI materials for students to rely on while writing and RCRI materials have a potential for building genre awareness. Further study on RCRI suggests that students assignments need to be investigated to make the study exhaustive.

See pages 130-152

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Category: Main Editions, Volume 13 Issue 3