The Effect of Written Corrective Feedback on Grammatical Accuracy of EFL Students: An Improvement over Previous Unfocused Designs

Document Type: Original Article

Authors

1 Imam Khomeini International University, Iran

2 University of Tehran, Iran

Abstract

The effectiveness of written corrective feedback (WCF) in the improvement of language learners' grammatical accuracy has been a topic of interest in SLA studies for the past couple of decades. The present study reports the findings of a three-month study investigating the effect of direct unfocused WCF on the grammatical accuracy of elementary students in an EFL context. The researchers selected two intact classes totaling 33 students, and assigned each to a direct feedback group (n = 16) and a control group (n = 17). The students produced eight pieces of writing (a pretest, three writing tasks along with their revisions, and a posttest) from which their grammatical accuracy was obtained. The results indicated that while the experimental group significantly outperformed the control group in the revision of the three writing tasks, no significant difference was found when the two groups produced a new piece of writing after a one-month interval. The study concludes that accuracy improvement caused by unfocused WCF during the revision process does not extend to EFL learners' future writing when no feedback is available, at least at the elementary level. 

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