Integrating Digital Multimodal Composition into EFL Writing Instruction
Research background: Digital multimodal composition has recently received paramount attention in the instruction of second language writing.
Gap in knowledge: Although the merits of digital multimodal composition have widely been acknowledged by many scholars, the instruction of English writing has still remained monomodal in Iran.
Purpose of the study: The present quasi-experimental study aimed to investigate the differential impacts of the two types of writing (multimodal/monomodal) on English as a Foreign language (EFL) learners’ writing ability in terms of content, communicative achievement, organization, and language across five times.
Methods: To this end, two intact groups, including 59 EFL learners at a university in southeastern Iran participated in the study. The participants were assigned into two comparison groups of multimodal (n = 30) and monomodal (n = 29) compositions. The students in the multimodal group composed five digital essays, while the monomodal group used only the textual mode to produce their essays throughout the semester. Following a repeated measures design, the researchers assessed the participants’ writing ability across five times. A mixed between-within ANOVA was conducted to address the research questions.
Findings: The results revealed that both groups showed significant improvement in their writing ability across time. Furthermore, the multimodal group outperformed the monomodal group in their writing ability.
Value added: The findings suggest that writing instructional practices in Iran should be redefined and updated to accommodate the needs and expectations of the twenty-first century learners.
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