‘It “text” two to tango’: Video-based analysis of interaction in 6th grade peer-assisted writing dyads

‘It “text” two to tango’: Video-based analysis of interaction in 6th grade peer-assisted writing dyads

First Author: Fien De Smedt -- Ghent University
Additional authors/chairs: 
Hanne Steurtewagen; Liesje De Backer; Hilde Van Keer
Keywords: Writing, writing in dyads, Elementary, upper elementary
Abstract / Summary: 

There is growing consensus on the importance of interaction between learners for the development of knowledge and understanding, as well as on the effectiveness of various forms of peer-assisted writing (Graham et al., 2012). It however appears that we are still remarkably ignorant about the dynamics and processes of peer group interaction and how these are related to students’ writing performance (Van Steendam, 2016). In the present study, we specifically opted for a process-based approach to uncover (in)effective interaction or learning processes that cannot be revealed by solely studying students’ writing products (Allal, 2018). We more particularly aim at unravelling the underlying interaction patterns that determine the outcomes of peer assisted writing in sixth grade. The interaction of 4 dyads during 3 peer-assisted writing lessons was videotaped and coded by means of a theory-driven coding instrument. The latter integrated coding categories on cognitive writing processes (i.e., planning, translating, revising, and monitoring) (Flower & Hayes, 1981) and on interaction patterns (i.e., no transactivity, low transactivity, hybrid transactivity, and high transactivity) (De Backer et al., 2016). In total, 4085 units at the turn level (i.e., referring to individual students’ contributions/verbalisations) and 2604 interactive units (i.e., referring to action-reaction exchange between two students) were segmented. The presentation will report on descriptive analyses regarding the cognitive processes underlying writing and on the intensity of students’ interactions. Implications for implementing effective peer-assisted writing practices, eliciting deep-level and reciprocal discussions (i.e., high transactivity), will be discussed.