Vol. 6. No. 3 A-1 December 2002
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Variation in EFL-ESL Peer Response

Adina Levine
Brenda Oded
Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan, Israel
Ulla Connor
Indiana Center for Cultural Communication
Iveta Asons
Indiana University at Indianapolis


The present study attempts to answer the need for more focused research on peer response among EFL students and the need to compare the findings with those of ESL students. The paper examines the nature of peer response in foreign language and second language writing of student populations in two different learning settings: Israel (EFL) and U.S. (ESL). Two research questions are addressed by the study: 1) Are there differences in peer responses because of the different learning environments in EFL and ESL? 2) Is there a difference in attitudes toward peer response between students in EFL and ESL learning environments? The following data collection instruments were used: a background questionnaire, pre-tests for language proficiency and writing skills, two peer response sheets, writers' statements, pre- and post-course questionnaires on attitudes to peer review, a classroom behavior profile, and teacher observation reports of students behavior in the classroom during peer response. Both similarities and differences were found in the revision behavior of Israeli and U.S. students. There were notable differences in the quality and quantity of responses between the two groups as well as in the dynamics of the peer response sessions. Some variation was found between the two groups in the attitude towards peer response and to the authority of the teacher.

Keywords:ESL,EFL,activities,class dynamics,peer interaction


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