The Effect of Oral vs. Written Feedback in EFL Writing

Emel Küçükali


This mixed-method study aimed to investigate the effect of Oral feedback (OF) vs. Written feedback (WF) on overall L2 writing performance and on the relevant sub-scores: organization, lexis, grammar, and coherence & cohesion. EFL (English as a Foreign Language) university students (N=74) from English Preparatory Program at a state Turkish University were selected and then divided into comparison (N=35) and experimental group (N=39) through convenient sampling. While completing three writing tasks on an argumentative essay for four weeks, the comparison group was exposed to traditional WF and the experimental group was exposed to OF. The quantitative data was collected from the scores of the first and last writing papers and was analyzed through independent and paired samples t-tests. The qualitative data was collected from semi-structured interviews with three participants from the experimental group and was analyzed through open and structural coding. The empirical findings indicated a significant effect of OF on both the overall writing performance and on the sub-scores. The qualitative results showed that the opportunity for meaningful interaction, clarification, and negotiation between the students and the teacher during OF helped the students from the experimental group to receive more detailed and constructive feedback, and to significantly improve their writing skills.


EFL writing, negotiation, oral feedback, teacher-student conferences, written feedback

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