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Contribution to Book
Collaborative Writing in Wikis: Insights from Culture Projects in German Classes
Networking and Online Collaboration in Foreign Language Learning (2009)
  • Nike Arnold, Portland State University
  • Lara Ducate, University of South Carolina - Columbia
  • Claudia Kost, University of Alberta
This exploratory study intends to shed light on the online collaborative writing and revision processes of foreign language (FL) learners. Specifically, it is based on a comparison of two wiki projects in intermediate German classes in which small groups of students used wikis to research cultural and historical topics related to Brussig’s novel Am kürzeren Ende der Sonnenallee. While the wiki assignment in one class was purposely unstructured, the other was heavily guided by the instructor with regard to page content, due dates for a bibliography, outline, and revised versions and also included instructor and peer feedback. All archived versions of each wiki were analyzed by coding students’ revisions based on an adaptation of Faigley and Witte’s (1981) taxonomy. Research questions addressed the amount, type, and quality of revisions comparing the two groups, as well as learners’ perceptions of the project. Results indicate that both groups engaged in a large number of revisions, mostly concerning content and formal accuracy. While the group with the unstructured approach focused more on meaning-changing revisions, the group with the instructor guided approach concentrated more on formal revisions and also achieved a slightly higher success rate in linguistic accuracy in their revisions. Learners regarded the collaborative-writing projects as a positive experience and valued the feedback they received.
  • Online social networks,
  • Experiential learning -- Case studies,
  • Information technology -- Social aspects
Publication Date
Lara Lomicka and Gillian Lord
CALICO Publications
CALICO Monograph Series
Publisher Statement
Copyright © 2009 The Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium (CALICO)
Citation Information
Nike Arnold, Lara Ducate and Claudia Kost. "Collaborative Writing in Wikis: Insights from Culture Projects in German Classes" San Marcos, TXNetworking and Online Collaboration in Foreign Language Learning Vol. 5 (2009)
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