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L2 Writing in Test and Non-test Situations: Process and Product

Khuder, B., & Harwood, N. (2015)
Journal of Writing Research, 6(3), 233-278

Test writers sometimes complain they cannot perform to their true abilities because of time constraints. We therefore examined differences in terms of process and product between texts produced under test and non-test conditions. Ten L2 postgraduates wrote two argumentative essays, one under test conditions, with only forty minutes being allowed and without recourse to resources, and one under non-test conditions, with unlimited time as well as access to the Internet. Keystroke logging, screen capture software, and stimulated recall protocols were used, participants explaining and commenting on their writing processes. Sixteen writing process types were identified. Higher proportions of the processes of translation and surface revision were recorded in the test situation, while meaningful revision and evaluation were both higher in the non-test situation. There was a statistically significant difference between time allocation for different processes at different stages. Experienced teachers awarded the non-test texts a mean score of almost one point (0.8) higher. A correlational analysis examining the relationship between writing process and product quality showed that while the distribution of writing processes can have an impact on text quality in the test situation, it had no effect on the product in the non-test situation.

PDF | doi: 10.17239/jowr-2015.06.03.2

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