A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF THE IMPACT OF DA MODELS ON THE WRITING ABILITY AND ATTITUDE OF IRANIAN EFL LEARNERS

Jaleh Hassaskhah, Masoumeh Javan Haghparast

Abstract


The overall aim of this study was to advance understanding of the impact of the two main existing models of Dynamic Assessment (i.e. interventionist DA and interactionist DA) on the improvement of the writing abilities and attitudes of EFL learners. To have a viable conclusion, the study employed a quasi experimental research design in three pre-intermediate EFL classrooms, where each class functioned as both the experimental and the control groups. Then using the statistical procedure of repeated measure, the researchers obtained four sets of scores , the means of which were later calculated and compared in pairs (pair t-test) to see the development of students , if any, throughout the semester. Moreover, the learners’ attitude towards each of the models was assessed qualitatively after the term was over. This was done through thematic analysis techniques. Based on the results of the data analysis, it was found out that of the two main existing frameworks of DA, in spite of the common claims of their proponents, none can be given priority over the other. The only difference is the situations to which they can be applied. While interventionist DA is applicable in larger classes, interactionist DA can be best used with individual learners or in classes with fewer than four or five students. This study also indicated that learners feel more satisfied with DA than the traditional testing techniques in which their individual voices are not usually heard. Students, who used DA, liked writing activities more than before and stated that internalizing the rules and techniques got easier. Consequently, although the results obtained are susceptible to some context related limitations as well, which might threaten their full generalizability; this will not prevent us from refuting the impracticality of generalizing DA to all contexts and instead suggesting it as a valuable tool of assessment for all kinds of contexts.


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5750/bjll.v5i0.212

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