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ERIC Number: ED524385
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 236
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1244-4291-4
Computer-Based Writing and Paper-Based Writing: A Study of Beginning-Level and Intermediate-Level Chinese Learners' Writing
Kang, Hana
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, The Ohio State University
Chinese writing is one of the most difficult challenges for Chinese learners whose first language writing system is alphabetic letters. Chinese teachers have incorporated computer-based writing into their teaching in the attempt to reduce the difficulties of writing in Chinese, with a particular emphasis on composing (as opposed to simply writing individual Chinese characters). However, there is a lack of study to fully understand the complexity of Chinese learners' computer-based and paper-based writing modes and their writing development. This study compares these two writing modes of beginning-level and intermediate-level Chinese learners and investigates how they develop Chinese writing by analyzing their writing errors. This study uses "mixed methods" that include a combination of qualitative and quantitative approaches to examine participants' Chinese writing. Surveys and interviews were conducted to examine participants' views of Chinese writing and their attitudes toward computer-based and paper-based writing. In total, 58 beginning-level and 12 intermediate-level learners participated in the survey study. Individual writing sessions were arranged with 16 beginning-level and 12 intermediate-level participants for analyzing their writing process. Their paper-based writings were recorded using the Smartpen, a state-of-the-art pen-movement tracking device. Camtasia Studio, a computer screen capture program, was used to record computer-based Chinese writing. Two native Chinese teaching assistants graded participants' writing using a ten-point scale to examine their writing with respect to clarity (in terms of character, vocabulary, and grammar error) and organization (in terms of style of writing and use of linking words). The survey data revealed that participants regarded Chinese writing as "handwriting of Chinese characters." Due to the difficulty of learning Chinese characters, they thought that they would write Chinese better with computer typing. Different from participants' perceptions on computer-based writing, paired t-test results of intermediate-level participants' writings indicated that they wrote Chinese essays better with paper-based writing in terms of writing clarity and organization. Computer-based writing only helped participants produce fewer character errors. Interestingly, when participants wrote unfamiliar genres of writing, there was no difference between computer-based and paper-based writing. In addition, the analysis of the Chinese character writing process indicated that there was a correlation between following correct stroke-sequences and producing correct characters. By analyzing character errors and stroke-sequence errors, I identify three developmental stages of Chinese character writing: "Pinyin" writing, acquisition of stroke-shapes and rules of compound characters, and matching pronunciations with characters. This study contributes to the Chinese writing field by applying new methods to examine learners' writing and experimenting with novel technologies to analyze their writing process. The findings reveal the importance of teaching correct stroke-sequences in Chinese character writing. Furthermore, this study discovers that computer-based writing allows Chinese learners to produce correct characters. Finally, it points out other important aspects of Chinese writing, including the syntax, genre, and use of Chinese resources, as they also influence Chinese learners' writing. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A