Improvement of Preservice Turkish Teachers' Perceived Writing Self-Efficacy Beliefs

By Aydın, İbrahim Seçkin; Seçkin Aydınbrahim | Kuram ve Uygulamada Egitim Bilimleri, February 2019 | Go to article overview

Improvement of Preservice Turkish Teachers' Perceived Writing Self-Efficacy Beliefs


Aydın, İbrahim Seçkin, Seçkin Aydınbrahim, Kuram ve Uygulamada Egitim Bilimleri


Writing is at the forefront among the most demanding skills to acquire, both in native and foreign languages. Writing skill, being a combination of complex tasks and attitudes (Harrington, Holik & Hurt, 1998), comprises cognitive and metacognitive processes in itself. According to some researchers (Güneş, 2013; Turan, 2010), the text to be written is conceptualized in mind before it is actually conveyed in text. The mind arranges feelings and ideas about a subject through restricting, classifying and sorting and these feelings and ideas are then put onto a paper based on certain rules. Such steps entail authors to use various strategies in text production. As argued by Flower, Hayes, Carey, Schriver and Stratman (1986), good authors regularly monitor themselves and carry out numerous self-assessments by reviewing not only the text they create but their own writing strategies and themselves as authors.

Cognitive component of writing has been a subject of many researches in the relevant literature for a very long time. These researches focused on the followings: time allocated for cognitive efforts and tasks in writing process (Kellog, 1987); the strategies and methods in revision of diverse text types (Piolat & Roussey, 1991); the reasons why authors and editors are unsuccessful in detecting and correcting the mistakes in the texts (Plumb, Butterfield, Hacker & Dunlosky, 1994); environmental, cognitive and metacognitive influences in text revision (Butterfield, Hacker & Albertson, 1996) and performances in planning, translation and revision of metacognitive knowledge related to cognitive tasks in writing (Berninger, Whitaker, Feng, Swanson & Abbott, 1996).

Metacognitive concept has emerged with the interest shown in the theory of social learning theory beginning from 1970s. This concept was rediscovered as the monitoring of thinking processes, mostly based on Flavell's ideas (1976; 1978; 1981; 1982; 1999; 2004). As stated by cognitive psychologists, metacognition is defined as the knowledge and control that a person has on his/her thinking and learning (Strassman, 1997) and as understanding, using and controlling one's own cognitive processes (Reeve & Brown, 1985). This approach has paved the way towards a belief that metacognition needs to be examined and regulated not only in learning domains, but also in every case where one's knowledge is referred to, including in areas where writing skills are addressed. Reeve & Brown (1985), Jones and Pellegrini (1996) argue that authors, who are talented and experienced in writing that necessitates a high-level mental performance and encompasses both cognitive and metacognitive processes, understand whether they and their readers have attained the set goals. At this stage, writing can also be perceived as a tool that plays a role in the development of metacognition as it activates reflective thinking skill. On the other hand, however, one's ability to do self-assessment depending on his/her self-awareness is indicative of his/her cognitive and metacognitive experiences in writing. It could be posited that in writing-related contexts, cognition refers to the knowledge to be used in the writing process, whilst metacognition refers to the way this knowledge would be used. Self-efficacy perception reveals how a person perceives himself/herself in terms of cognitive and metacognitive efficacy.

Writing and Self-Efficacy

Although the concept of self-efficacy is based upon the theory of Social Cognitive Learning by Albert Bandura, the theoretical basis of writing self-efficacy rests on the opinions and analyses of researchers such as Zimmerman and Bandura (1994), Pajares (2003), Schunk (2003). Researches on writing self-efficacy which date back to the mid-1980s showed correlation between writing self-efficacy and a wide array of variables (writing quality and standards, writing anxiety etc.) and shed light on the correlation levels in different groups (grade level, gender etc. …

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