Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 12. Number2 June 2021 Pp.399- 413
Strategies of Teaching Writing at Saudi Tertiary-Level Institutions: Reality and
Khaled Abkar Alkodimi
Department of English Language and Literature
College of Languages and Translation
Imam Mohammad Ibn Saud Islamic University, Saudi Arabia
Corresponding Author: email@example.com
Arif Ahmed Mohammed Hassan Al-Ahdal
Department of English Language
College of Arts and Sciences
Methnab, Qassim University, Saudi Arabia
Received: 2/1/2021 Accepted: 6/8/2021 Published: 6/24/2021
Teaching writing in English is a particularly daunting task for EFL teachers. Much of it concerns teaching accuracy in text production, development and thought expression which is usually not the teachers’ stated aim. Thus, teachers’ perceptions to the teaching of writing and the actual classroom practices need examination, which is the aim of this study, a prerequisite to recommending pedagogical changes to bridge the gap that exists between educational aims and outcomes so far as the teaching of writing to EFL learners in Saudi tertiary level educational institutions is concerned. The study applies a quantitative approach via a survey conducted with one hundred EFL teachers at Imam Mohammed Ibn Saud Islamic University (IMBSIU, henceforth), Qassim University and King Khaled University, Saudi Arabia. Results suggest that inadequate English resources and inefficient teaching methods are, in general, the main causes of poor writing skills. Further, the teachers perceive limited lexis, irregular sentences, and orthographical differences with the mother tongue as impediments in the learners’ ability to write well in English. The study concludes with some pertinent recommendations to remedy the situation.
Keywords: EFL teachers, learners, perceptions, strategies, tertiary, writing
Cite as: Alkodimi, K. A., & Al-Ahdal, A.A.M.H. (2021). Strategies of Teaching Writing at Saudi Tertiary-Level Institutions:
Reality and Expectations. Arab World English Journal, 12 (2) 399- 413.
Abedi, P., Namaziandost, E., & Akbari, S. (2019). The impact of flipped classroom instruction on Iranian upper-intermediate EFL learners’ writing skill. English Literature and Language Review, 5(9), 164-172.
Al-Ahdal, A. A. M. H., & Alqasham, F. H. (2020). Saudi EFL learning and assessment in times of Covid-19: crisis and beyond. Asian EFL Journal, 27(3/4), 356-383.
Al-Ahdal, A. A. M. H. (2020a). Code mixing in Arabic conversations of college students: A sociolinguistic study of attitudes to switching to English. The Asian ESP Journal, 16 (1), 6-19.
Al-Ahdal, A. A. M. H. (2020b). Translanguagism and the bilingual EFL learner of Saudi Arabia: exploring new vistas. Asian EFL Journal, 27(1), 14-26.
Al-Ahdal, A. A. M. H., & Al-Mashaqba, N. J. H. (2016). English for non-teaching staffers of Qassim University, KSA: The need of the hour. British Journal of English Linguistics, 4(2), 1-25.
Al-Ahdal, A. A. M. H., Alfallaj, F., Al-Awaied, S., & Al-Hattami, A. (2014). A comparative study of proficiency in speaking and writing among EFL learners in Saudi Arabia. American International Journal of Contemporary Research, 4(2), 141-149.
Alfallaj, F. S. S., & Al-Ahdal, A. A. M. H. (2017). Authentic assessment: evaluating the Saudi EFL tertiary examination system. Theory and Practice in Language Studies, 7(8), 597-607. http://dx.doi.org/10.17507/tpls.0708.01
Alhujaylan, H. (2019). An assessment of the effectiveness of CALL in teaching English Language writing skills in Saudi Arabia. Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Special Issue on CALL, (5). https://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3431731
Alkhudiry, R. I., Al-Ahdal, A. A. M. H. (2020). Analysing EFL discourse of Saudi EFL learners: identifying mother tongue interference. The Asian ESP Journal, 16(2/1), 89-109.
Al-Mudhi, M. A. (2019). Evaluating Saudi university students’ English writing skills using analytic rating scale. Journal of Applied Linguistics and Language Research, 6(4), 95-109
Al-Saleh, N. A. (2018). The impact of positive and corrective feedback via Showbie on Saudi students’ English writing, (Published Master’s Thesis). Imam Muhammad Ibn Saud Islamic University, KSA. DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awej/th.215
Bandura, A. (1993). Perceived self-efficacy in cognitive development and functioning. Educational Psychologist, 28(2),117-148. https://doi.org/10.1207/s15326985ep2802_3
Bracewell, R. J. (2020). Investigating the control of writing skills. In reading empirical research studies: The Rhetoric of Research (pp. 436-463). New York: Routledge.
Butler, D. B., Trosclair, E., Zhou, Y., & Wei, M. (2014). Student and teacher perceptions of academic English writing in Russia. Journal of Teaching English for Specific and Academic Purposes, 2(2), 203-227.
Darmawangsa, D., Mutiarsih, Y., Karimah, I. S., & Racmadhany, A. (2020, December). Think, talk, and write strategy in French writing skill learning. In 4th International Conference on Language, Literature, Culture, and Education (ICOLLITE 2020) (pp. 143-148). Atlantis Press.
El Tantawi, M., Sadaf, S., & AlHumaid, J. (2018). Using gamification to develop academic writing skills in dental undergraduate students. European Journal of Dental Education, 22(1), 15-22. https://doi.org/10.1111/eje.12238
Ferede, T., Melese, E., & Tefera, E. (2012). A descriptive survey on teachers’ perception of EFL writing and their practice of teaching writing: preparatory schools in Jimma zone in focus. Ethiopian Journal of Education and Science. 8(1): 29-52.
Flower, L. and Hayes, J.R. (1981) A cognitive process theory of writing. college composition and communication, 32, 365-387. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/356600.
Fu, D., & Matoush, M. (2012). Teachers’ perceptions of English language writing instruction in China. International Advances in Writing Research: Cultures, Places, Measures, 23-39.
Go Silk, B. et al (2020). Cognition toward the mother tongue, attitude toward English, Chavacano, and Filipino: A structural equation modeling approach with bootstrap analysis. Asian ESP, 16(1/2), 5-28. https://ssrn.com/abstract=3570991
Hayes, J. R., & Flower, L. (1981). Uncovering cognitive processes in writing: an introduction to protocol analysis. ERIC Clearinghouse.
Hedge. T. (1988). Writing. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Hidayati, K. H. (2018). Teaching writing to EFL learners: an investigation of challenges confronted by Indonesian teachers. Langkawi: Journal of The Association for Arabic and English, 4(1), 21-31. http://dx.doi.org/10.31332/lkw.v4i1.772
Hodges, T. S. (2017). Theoretically speaking: an examination of four theories and how they support writing in the classroom. The Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies. 90(4):193-146.
Imsa-ard, P. (2020). Being an effective writing teacher: understanding writing theories behind the product, process, and genre approaches. International Journal of Linguistics and Translation Studies, 1(2), 35-47. https://doi.org/10.36892/ijlts.v1i2.31
Kardena, A., Syarif, H., & Zaim, M. (2020, December). Analysis of students’ point of view regarding to writing skill at English education section of IAIN Bukittinggi. In 2nd International Conference Innovation in Education (ICoIE 2020) (pp. 62-67). Atlantis Press. https://dx.doi.org/10.2991/assehr.k.201209.193
Keller, S. D., Fleckenstein, J., Krüger, M., Köller, O., & Rupp, A. A. (2020). English writing skills of students in upper secondary education: results from an empirical study in Switzerland and Germany. Journal of Second Language Writing, 48. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2019.100700 .
Khan, S. R., & Khan, M. R. (2016). Error analysis in English writing. International Multidisciplinary Research Journal, 4(2), 232-243.
Kim, Y., & Kang, S. (2020). Writing to make meaning through collaborative multimodal composing among Korean EFL learners: writing processes, writing quality and student perception. Computers and Composition, 58, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compcom.2020.102609
Landicho, C. J. B. (2020). Secondary school students’ attitudes and practices toward research writing and reporting in science. Issues in Educational Research, 30(1), 156.
Lee, I. (2020). Utility of focused/comprehensive written corrective feedback research for authentic L2 writing classrooms. Journal of Second Language Writing, 49, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2020.100734
Listyani, (2018). Enhancing academic writing skills through “reading to learn” strategy. Arab World English Journal, 9(1), 268-280. https://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awej/vol9no1.19
Magulod, G. C. (2018). Use of innovative prewriting techniques in enhancing the writing performance and attitude of second year information technology students. Asia Pacific Journal of Multidisciplinary Research, 6(2), 1-9.
McDonough, K., & De Vleeschauwer, J. (2019). Comparing the effect of collaborative and individual prewriting on EFL learners’ writing development. Journal of Second Language Writing, 44, 123-130. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2019.04.003
McMaster, K. L. et al. (2019). Supporting teachers’ use of data-based instruction to improve students’ early writing skills. Journal of Educational Psychology.
Oppenheimer, D., Zaromb, F., Pomerantz, J. R., Williams, J. C., & Park, Y. S. (2017). Improvement of writing skills during college: A multi-year cross-sectional and longitudinal study of undergraduate writing performance. Assessing Writing, 32, 12-27.
Payant, C., McDonough, K., Uludag, P., & Lindberg, R. (2019). Predicting integrated writing task performance: source comprehension, prewriting planning, and individual differences. Journal of English for Academic Purposes, 40, 87-97.
Pimada, L. H., Toba, R., & Rasyidi, A. W. (2020). Learning of imla’ using flashcards on writing skill at islamic elementary school level in samarinda. izdihar: Journal of Arabic Language Teaching, Linguistics, and Literature, 3(1), 1-16.
Raimes, A. (1983). Anguish as a second language? remedies for composition teachers. in En J. ringle, I. Yalden & Y. A. Freedman (Eds.), learning to write: first language/second language, (252-272), New York: Longman.
Rakedzon, T., & Baram-Tsabari, A. (2017). To make a long story short: a rubric for assessing graduate students’ academic and popular science writing skills. Assessing Writing, 32, 28-42. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.asw.2016.12.004
Seçer, S. Y. E., & Yücel-Toy, B. (2020). Impact of writing course design based on 5E learning model on writing skill instruction and development. International Online Journal of Education and Teaching, 7(3), 760-783. https://iojet.org/index.php/IOJET/article/view/841
Sukmawati, N. N., & Nasution, S. S. (2020). Genre-based approach: can it improve the informatics engineering students’ writing skill? JEES: Journal of English Educators Society, 5(1), 95-102.
Surya, A., et al., (2020). Improving high school and vocational school teachers in writing skill. Jurnal Dedikasi, 17(1), 64-71. : https://doi.org/10.22219/dedikasi.v17i1.12021
Tanrıkulu, F. (2020). Students’ perceptions about the effects of collaborative digital storytelling on writing skills. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 1-16. https://doi.org/10.1080/09588221.2020.1774611
Thonus, T. (2020). The disciplinary identity of second language writing. Journal of Second Language Writing, 49, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2020.100725 .
Timizar-Le Pen, T., Marchand, C., Léocadie, M., & Rothan-Tondeur, M. (2020). Reflective writing: implementation and learning perception from students and teachers of French nursing schools. Nurse Education in Practice, 49, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nepr.2020.102921 .
Uludag, P., Lindberg, R., McDonough, K., & Payant, C. (2019). Exploring L2 writers’ source-text use in an integrated writing assessment. Journal of Second Language Writing, 46, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2019.100670
Valizadeh, M., & Soltanpour, F. (2020). The flipped pedagogy: effects on the grammatical competence and writing skill of basic users of English. International Journal of Instruction, 13(3), 761-776. https://doi.org/10.29333/iji.2020.13351a
Vygotsky, L. (1978). Interaction between learning and development. Readings on the development of children, 23(3), 34-41.
Zahroh, R., Mujiyanto, J., & Saleh, M. (2020). Students’ attitudes toward teachers’ written corrective feedback and their writing skill. English Education Journal, 10(1), 9-17. https://doi.org/10.15294/eej.v10i1.32511
Zemni, B. & Alrefaee, Y. (2020). Investigating the source of reading anxiety among undergraduate Saudi female EFL students in translation departments. TESOL International Journal, 15 (5), 65-77.