Arab World English Journal
AWEJ Volume.3 Number 2. June 2012                                                                                           pp. 48 – 75

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Investigating Teaching and Learning Practices of Second Language ESP Writing at Tertiary Level in Yemen

Dr. Hussein Taha Assaggaf
Faculty of Arts & Humanities,
Al-Ahgaff University, Yemen

Asso. Prof. Dr. Siti Hamin Stapa
School of Language Studies and Linguistics,
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia

Dr. Jamilah Mustafa
Faculty of Education and Social Sciences,
University Selangor

The teaching and learning of writing in L2 contexts is a complicated process that needs to be carefully investigated in order to obtain better outcomes. This study examines the teaching and learning in a writing course for students in the Yemeni context. In particular, the study deals with a writing course intended for preparing ESP students for writing final project reports at the tertiary level. Using three qualitative techniques of observations, interviews, and document analysis, the study investigated the current practices of the major participants involved in the writing course. The sample included students attending the writing course, course instructors and administrators. For trustworthiness of the data gathered, two techniques were employed: triangulation and member checking. The findings of the study unfolded a number of practices which were classified into three categories namely: administrative practices, instructional practices and student writing practices. The study concluded by proposing useful suggestions for improving the teaching and learning of writing in the ESP tertiary level in Yemen based on the findings of the present study.

Keywords: Second language (L2) writing, Foreign language (FL) writing, English for


Hussein Taha Assaggaf is an Assistant Professor of Applied Linguistics at the department
of English, Faculty of Arts & Humanities, Al-Ahgaff University in Yemen. He obtained
his MA from the University of Leeds, UK and his doctorate from the National University
of Malaysia. His current research interests are second language writing, needs analysis
and English for specific purposes.
Siti Hamin Stapa is an Associate Professor at the School of Language Studies and
Linguistics, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
She has been teaching at both undergraduate and postgraduate students in the area of ELS
for about 21 years. Her research interests are written literacy, genre analysis and
contrastive rhetoric.
Jamilah Mustafa is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Education and Social
Sciences, University Selangor (UNISEL), Malaysia. She has a PhD from the University
of Exeter, UK. She teaches Educational Enquiry at the EDD level and Principles of
Language Learning and Teaching at the undergraduate level. Her research interests cover
the areas of language, culture and literacy. Currently she is involved in a project on
environmental literacy for primary school children.