Journal for Language Teaching

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Scaffolding an intervention for essay writing

T Conradie


This article reports on a series of language activities which were implemented to improve first-year students’ writing skills in a South African university. These activities focus on writing skills in literature courses, with specific emphasis on organising and supporting an argument. They were specifically designed on the basis of observations in tutorial lectures and test responses, as well as the principles of constructivism and OBE (outcomes-based education). This article will discuss the design of these activities as well as students’ written responses. Based on this explorative analysis, the article aims to suggest areas for future research.

Keywords: scaffolding, constructivism, essay writing, tutorials
AJOL African Journals Online