Effects of formative feedback on argumentative writing in English and cross-linguistic transfer to German

Peltzer, K.; Lira Lorca, A.; Krause, U-M.; Busse, V.

Forschungsartikel (Zeitschrift)


Background: Argumentative writing is a crucial but challenging competence for students. Process-oriented teaching with formative feedback benefits writing, yet the effects of feedback based on rubrics and exemplars versus in-text comments, remains unclear. Method: We conducted a randomized controlled intervention study with 294 secondary students of English as a foreign language to examine the effects of formative feedback on argumentative writing and genre knowlege and investigate cross-linguistic transfer to German. Feedback was implemented within a learning unit on argumentative writing that we had developed for this project. The experimental groups (EG1: rubric + exemplar; EG2: in-text comments; EG3: rubric + exemplar and in-text comments) were compared to two control groups (CG1:learning unit without additional feedback; CG2: no intervention). We assessed writing quality (pre-, post-, and follow-up tests: 1122 essays in English; pre- and post-tests: 588 essays in German) and genre knowledge; feedback perceptions were measured by questionnaires. Results: ANOVA results showed significant gains in English writing quality in the EGs and CG1, and the EGs made significant progress regarding genre knowledge. EG1 made large gains. Results were largely sustained. Regression analyses revealed learning progress in English in the EGs and CG1 as a significant predictor of writing quality in German at T2. There were no significant group differences in students’ perceptions of feedback. Conclusion: Our results indicate that feedback based on rubrics and exemplars, which can easily be implemented in larger classes, promotes writing and genre knowledge and is perceived as helpful by students.

Details zur Publikation

Veröffentlichungsjahr: 2024
Sprache, in der die Publikation verfasst istEnglisch
Link zum Volltext: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.learninstruc.2024.101935