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A Synthesis of Research on Second Language Writing In English

A synthesis of research on second language writing in English

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A Synthesis Of Research On Second Language Writing In English

The basis for most mathematics problem solving research for secondary school students in the past 31 years can be found in the writings of Polya (26,27,28), the field of cognitive psychology, and specifically in cognitive science. Cognitive psychologists and cognitive scientists seek to develop or validate theories of human learning (9) whereas mathematics educators seek to understand how their students interact with mathematics (33,40). The area of cognitive science has particularly relied on computer simulations of problem solving (25,50). If a computer program generates a sequence of behaviors similar to the sequence for human subjects, then that program is a model or theory of the behavior. Newell and Simon (25), Larkin (18), and Bobrow (2) have provided simulations of mathematical problem solving. These simulations may be used to better understand mathematics problem solving.

A Synthesis Of Research On Second Language Writing …

Section III is essentially 'a sort of prose database' (p. 96) of basic research findings, focusing on L2 writers, their composing processes, and their written texts. The four chapters in this section follow a similar format, breaking down research foci into multiple categories that are presented in order from most to least researched. Within this section, chapter 11 divides writer characteristics into five basic categories; chapter 12 presents research findings in terms of 25 variables related to the composing process; chapter 13 presents findings on 35 categories of textual features of L2 texts; and chapter 14 is wholly devoted to the findings of 63 reports of research in connection with six basic grammatical categories.

A Synthesis of Research on Second Language Writing …

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Methods, such as the clinical approach discussed earlier, used to gather data dealing with problem solving and individual's thinking processes may also be used in the classroom to evaluate progress in problem solving. Charles, Lester, and O'Daffer (7) describe how we may incorporate these techniques into a classroom problem solving evaluation program. For example, thinking aloud may be canonically achieved within the classroom by placing the students in cooperative groups. In this way, students may express their problem solving strategies aloud and thus we may be able to assess their thinking processes and attitudes unobtrusively. Charles and his colleagues also discussed the use of interviews and student self reports during which students are asked to reflect on their problem solving experience a technique often used in problem solving research. Other techniques which they describe involve methods of scoring students' written work. Figure 3 illustrates a final assignment used to assess teachers' learning in a problem solving course that has been modified to be used with students at the secondary level.

Parents are often concerned that using a non-community language as the language of their home will disadvantage their children. This program of research provides solid evidence that the overwhelming effect of bilingualism in the home is positive. The disadvantages are relatively minor and easily overcome. The implications for schooling are more complex. Children’s success in school is strongly dependent on their proficiency in the language of instruction, a relationship that holds for important linguistic activities (e.g., learning to read), non-verbal computational subjects (e.g., mathematics), and content-based curricula (e.g., social studies). In all these cases, children must be skilled in the forms and meanings of the school language and be competent readers of that language. Bilingual children may not be at the same level as their monolingual peers, and second-language learners for whom English or French is not their home language may have not built up adequate skills in the instructional language to succeed in schools, although the vocabulary gap between monolingual and bilingual children disappears if only school-based words are considered.6 The evidence for the overwhelming positive benefit of bilingualism, together with evidence that bilingual children are not cognitively handicapped, indicates an important role for schools in providing a means for these children to build up their language skills in the school language so that they can be full participants in the classroom and reap the most positive benefit from their educational experience.

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Children learning to read in two languages that share a writing system (e.g. English and French) show accelerated progress in learning to read; children whose two languages are written in different systems (e.g. English and Chinese) show no special advantage, but neither do they demonstrate any deficit. However, the benefit of learning to read in two languages requires that children be bilingual and not second-language learners whose competence in one of the languages is weak (as a result of a lower degree of involvement in the second language).

Nelda Hadaway received a B.S. Ed., an M. Ed., and an Ed. S. from The University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia and the Ph. D. from Georgia State University in Atlanta. She has taught mathematics at Hunter College High School in the New YorkCity and is retired from mathematics teaching at South Gwinnett High School in Snellville, Georgia. She is interested in integrating writing into the teaching of mathematics to enhance problem solving. She is currently a part time Assistant Professor of Mathematics at Kennesaw State University.


James W. Wilson is a retired Professor of Mathematics Education at The University of Georgia. He has a B.S. and M.A. from Kansas State Teachers College, M.S. from University of Notre Dame, and M.S. and Ph.D. from Stanford University. He has been interested in problem solving for many years. His doctoral research dealt with problem solving and his Problem Solving in Mathematics course is a regular offering at The University of Georgia. Over the years, he has also been involved in various problem solving projects including the U.S.-Japan Joint Seminar on Problem Solving in School Mathematics. He retired in 2015.


Maria L. Fernandez is an Associate Professor of Mathematics Education at Florida International University. She completed both a B.S. and M.S. in Mathematics Education at Florida International University in Miami, Florida and the Ph. D. at the University of Georgia. She previously taught at the University of Arizona and at Florida State University. She is interested in incorporating problem solving into the mathematics curriculum at all levels. While teaching mathematics at the secondary level in Miami, she integrated problem solving into the curriculum using various strategies. Her research interests involve mathematics visualizations in problem solving.

Journal of Second Language Writing - Elsevier
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Second language acquisition - essential information

Cummins draws the distinction between additive bilingualism in which the first languagecontinues to be developed and the first culture to be valued while the second language isadded; and subtractive bilingualism in which the second language is added at the expenseof the first language and culture, which diminish as a consequence. Cummins (1994) quotesresearch which suggests students working in an additive bilingual environment succeed to agreater extent than those whose first language and culture are devalued by their schoolsand by the wider society.

English Language Learners | Reading Rockets

Written by three respected figures in the field, this book is commendable in many respects. While there are several excellent sources on different aspects of L2 writing, Leki et al. have successfully accomplished the difficult task of bringing together a disparate body of research on different aspects of L2 and thus providing a picture of the research terrain. The authors' division of the literature into contexts of research, curriculum, assessment, and basic research serves to identify significant dimensions of L2 writing, present the knowledge base thus far amassed in each area, reveal topics that have been over- or under-researched, and initiate readers into the ongoing debates in each area. As an example, chapter 2 in Section I highlights the vexing issue of whether or not to streamline L2 students into regular classes in secondary schools, the appropriate timing of such a transition, and the ramifications of such decisions for students' academic and linguistic development and their life beyond school. In this respect, the book does indeed chart a research agenda for the community. The authors' particular categorization of studies further helps link the research findings to broader theoretical orientations and concerns that often remain implicit in studies of writing. For instance, the discussion of research [End Page 650] findings in relation to L2 curricula helps readers connect L2 instructional practices to different curricular ideologies. In addition, the categorization of research makes each chapter of the book self-contained, in the sense that the reader with a specific interest can consult the relevant chapter and readily gain a detailed review of prior literature. With respect to Section III, which lists basic research, one cautionary note is that it needs to be read with special care because of the occasional presentation of contradictory findings, which the authors themselves have noted. The book is invaluable to those new to the field, especially graduate students, and to all those who might have a professional interest in L2 writing.

ReadWriteThink - ReadWriteThink

Teaching and effective instruction for students with learning disabilities requires specialized knowledge in the areas of spoken language, reading, writing, and math. This section contains readings that reflect knowledge of best practices and evidence based instruction within each area.

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