An Investigation of Language-Learning Strategies in a Blogging Task
This study sought to identify the language-learning strategies employed by learners of Spanish while posting entries to a class blog. The project consisted of the development of a blogging activity and its implementation in an Intermediate Spanish course. In accordance with the literature’s recommendations about language-learning-strategy assessment, the study employed an actual-task strategy questionnaire which included open-ended questions, along with a checklist to identify the strategies used by participants while completing the blogging task. The analysis of the data revealed that participants employed a variety of strategies while posting their entries to the class blog. The most prevalent was the use of previous knowledge, which was mainly reflected in the choice of topic for blog entries made by participants. Participants also used the task-based strategy of re-wording and rephrasing to simplify the language and turned to available resources such as a Spanish-English dictionary, their textbook, the Internet, and help from friends or classmates. Additionally, participants used the metacognitive strategies of monitoring and evaluation to ensure the quality of their posts, coupled with the task-based strategy of applying general grammatical rules to specific blogging problems. Finally, the data analysis revealed that, contrary to the findings of previous research, students had some awareness of the existence of strategies that they could use to facilitate the blogging task.
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