Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Native and non-native English speaking tutors' feedback on college-level ESL student writing
by Park, Sunyoung, M.A., University of Maryland, Baltimore County, 2008, 182; 1460811
Abstract (Summary)

Previous research has documented perceived strengths and potential of non-native English speaking teachers (NNESTs) as teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). However, few studies have examined relative strengths of native English speaking teachers (NESTs) and NNESTs through one-on-one writing conferences. This thesis attempts to investigate the unique strengths of NESTs and NNESTs during writing conferences. Four Korean intermediate ESL students and four ESL tutors (two American tutors and two Korean tutors) served as participants. Two of the students were each paired with a NEST (an American English tutor) and two each with a NNEST (a Korean English tutor) to have three individual writing conferences over a semester. The conferences were audio-recorded and interviews were conducted with each of the tutors and the students to gain insights into their reflections about the conferences.

Contrary to a widespread belief that NESTs are more qualified than NNESTs, the NNESTs in this study demonstrated that they may be superior to NESTs when explaining grammatical rules and language learning strategies, empathizing with students, and persisting in their work with language learners. The NESTs, on the other hand, were superior to NNESTs when providing students with compliments for their efforts and utilizing student-centered teaching techniques to help them write independently. The student interviews showed that they were cognizant of the relative strengths of the NESTs and NNESTs. For example, they preferred NESTs when learning speaking and listening skills and NNESTs when learning about writing, grammar, and learning strategies. This study argues for a collaborative teaching arrangement with a good balance of NESTs and NNESTs to provide students with the optimum learning environment.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Shin, Sarah J.
Commitee: Crandall, JoAnn, Shelton, Nancy R.
School: University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- Maryland
Source: MAI 47/03M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Bilingual education, Teacher education
Keywords: EFL writing education, Oral feedback on ESL students' writing, Strengths of NESTs (native english speaking teachers) and NNESTs (non-native english speaking teachers), Students' perceptions for NESTs and NNESTs, Tutor-student interaction, Writing conference
Publication Number: 1460811
ISBN: 978-0-549-94825-4
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