The Impact of Computer-Based Graphic Organizers with Embedded Self-Regulated Learning Strategies on the Content Area Argumentative Writing of Typical and Struggling Writers




Boykin, Andrea Lechelle

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This study determined the effects of a computer-based graphic organizer (CBGO) with embedded self-regulated learning (SRL) strategies on the argumentative writing performance by 4th-and 6th-grade typical and struggling writers in the science and social studies content areas. This study extended the research of the use of SRL strategies and CBGOs to support student writing about science and social studies text. This study employed mixed methods research design and included group true experimental research and qualitative methods to determine the effects of the CBGO with embedded SRL strategies as well as explore the possible explanations for these effects. Results from this study indicated that the CBGO with embedded SRL strategies positively impacted the argumentative writing of typical and struggling writers. The improvements were in the areas of holistic quality, number of transition words, and number of sentences. However, there were no statistical significant differences in number of words or accuracy across conditions. In addition, students who used the CBGO to write their argumentative responses showed greater SRL strategy use in comparison to the control group. Students in the experimental condition were able to internalize the SRL strategies and maintain their performance when writing without the CBGO, outperforming the control group on most measures. Following instruction, students in the experimental group self-reported a greater sense of motivation to write than students in the control group. These findings add to the limited body of research on instructional strategies that support struggling writers in the content areas of science and social studies. Limitations and suggestions for future research are discussed.



Education, Content area writing, English Language Learners, Graphic organizer, Self-regulated learning, Struggling writers