The Effects of Theme - Based Instruction for Reducing Thai Undergraduate Students’ Descriptive Writing Apprehension

Paweenakarn Phonhan, Pilanut Phusawisot, Pimyupa Praphan


In the field of second language writing, there has been emphasis on the study of relationship between L2 learners and their writing apprehension for the past three decades. This research was aimed to reduce Thai undergraduate students’ descriptive writing apprehension and develop their writing proficiency through theme-based instruction. The subjects of the study were third-year English major students, enrolled in the Narrative and Descriptive Composition Course in the first semester of academic year 2014 at Mahasarakham University. All of them were purposively grouped according to the level of writing apprehension. The research instruments in this study were six lesson plans, writing apprehension test based on Daly and Miller’s framework (1975), semi- structured interview and students’ diary. The data analysis was computed through the SPSS statistical package for means, standard deviation, percentage and t-test. The findings revealed that prior to employing theme-based instruction; the students’ writing apprehension
was at the medium level with their average at 2.94. However, after
theme-based was adopted, the students’ writing apprehension was
reduced to 2.45 and overview of writing apprehension level was statistically significant at the level of .05. Focusing on writing ability from drafting, it was demonstrated that students’ writing ability was clearly higher; that is, 58.83% for draft 1, 65.48% for draft 2 73.48 % for draft 3 respectively. Similarly, the students have increased writing ability from pre-test to post-test when the pre-test average was at 56.16 and post-test average at 74.84.

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