Exploration of pedagogical use of social learning platform and word processing productivity tool in peer-assessment and self-editing tasks in elementary English writing classrooms

Wai Ying KWOK

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis


This study aims to explore the pedagogical potential of the social learning platform Edmodo and the word processing productivity tool MS Word Processor in peer-assessment and self-editing tasks in elementary ESL/EFL writing classrooms. Peer-assessment and self-editing are pedagogical arrangements long advocated to be favorable to ESL/EFL writing classrooms. Social learning platforms and word processing productivity tools are digital technologies used for educational purposes. Everyday application and empirical research of these pedagogical arrangements and digital technologies are ample in tertiary and secondary education sectors; yet inadequate in the elementary education sector. This study therefore has designed a technology-mediated pedagogy for a synergy between the two pedagogical arrangements and two digital productivity tools abovementioned to enhance the quality of learning process and learning outcomes among local elementary school students in ESL/EFL writing classrooms. Four research questions were designed to investigate (1) students’ achievements in ESL/EFL writing tasks; (2) the characteristics of students’ peer-assessment feedback provision; (3) the characteristics of students’ self-editing writing revisions; and (4) students’ perceptions toward the designed pedagogy. A multiple case study was conducted for the trial of the designed pedagogy in three local ESL/EFL classrooms. Case Study 1 lasted for 10 sessions in a 25-student Grade 4 class, whose average age was 9.44, in a Chinese-medium school. Case Study 2 lasted for 7 sessions in a 28-student Grade 4 class, whose average age was 9.36, in a Chinese-medium school. Case Study 3 lasted for 5 sessions plus 2 online assignments in a 17-student Grade 5 class, whose average age was 9.88, in an English-medium school. A mixed-method evaluation was conducted for (1) the scoring and syntactic maturity measurement of writing compositions by the 70 students; (2) a content analysis of 1,095 students’ peer-assessment feedback items; (3) a content analysis of 359 students’ self-editing revision items; and (4) a questionnaire survey with the 70 students followed by focus group discussions about their learning perceptions. The three case studies consistently confirmed the effectiveness of the designed pedagogy to improve students’ achievement and interest in learning ESL/EFL writing. Case Study 1 particularly corroborated the cognitive benefits of the designed pedagogy to stimulate students’ directions on performance improvement in ESL/EFL writing. Case Study 2 especially verified the affective benefits of the designed pedagogy to enhance students’ enjoyment and satisfaction when learning ESL/EFL writing. Case Study 3 particularly substantiated the impact of the designed pedagogy on enhancing students’ sense of responsibility to advance the peers’ and their own learning. This study implies that senior elementary school students are feasible and keen to engage in pedagogical arrangements of peer-assessment and self-editing in ESL/EFL writing classrooms. The young students are manageable and pleased to make technological use of Edmodo and MS Word Processor for completing peer-assessment and self-editing tasks. The young students are able to achieve knowledge enhancement and attitudinal changes when interacting with peers through the technology-supported peer-assessment tasks and consolidating own knowledge through the technology-supported self-editing tasks. The results of this study recommend that it is practicable and promising to implement the designed pedagogy for senior elementary school students to realize active, constructive and interactive learning in ESL/EFL writing curriculum. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2016



  • English language -- Writing -- Study and teaching (Elementary)
  • English writing pedagogy
  • Digital productivity tools
  • Peer-assessment
  • Self-editing
  • Social learning platform
  • Theses and Dissertations
  • Thesis (Ed.D.)--The Education University of Hong Kong, 2016