Capstone/Dissertation Title

Suggestions In Writing Center Tutorials


Spring 2017



Degree Name


Primary Advisor/Dissertation Chair

Eric Nelson

Secondary Advisor/Reader One

Julie Bach

Peer-Reviewer/Reader Two

Ellen Keesling


The purpose of this study was to investigate the types of suggestions made by a non-native speaker (NNS) of American English during writing center tutorials, and students’ perception of the suggestions made by the tutor. Four tutorials, two with native English speakers (NS) and two with NNS, were audio recorded and transcribed for instances of suggestions. Suggestions were analyzed according to several categories: 1) hedging and directness, 2) syntactic form, and 3) writing concern addressed. Stimulated recall interviews were conducted to determine the perception of the students. Findings of the study revealed that the NNS received more unhedged and direct suggestions. The interviews showed that students occasionally preferred direct suggestions, especially when addressing lower-order concerns such as grammar and formatting.

Research Methodology

Action Research, Interview, Observation


ESL/ ELLs, Writing Center

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