Promoting Cognitive Strategies in Second Language Writing

National Institute of Technology, Tiruchirappalli, INDIA
DOI: 10.14689/ejer.2020.88.5


Purpose: Polytechnic students lack basic skills, especially the writing skill essential for their employment. They find it difficult to write emails, reports, and other technical documents required at their workplace. Although there are studies to investigate this skill-gap, there is little research to explore the possibilities for enhancing their writing skill. Hence, this study focuses on enhancing the writing skill of the polytechnic students. This study aims to employ cognitive strategies to guide the mental operations entailed in performing a writing task. The paper delineates the experimental study employing cognitive strategies to foster the writing proficiency of the students.

Research Methods: 51 pre-final year diploma students belonging to the Department of Instrumentation and Control Engineering of the autonomous polytechnic institute in Tamil Nadu was chosen as the samples for this study. The teacher-researcher imparted cognitive strategies to the students and has invigorated them to employ it in their writing tasks administered in a graded structure during the course.

Findings: The findings of the study established a strong correlation between students’ cognitive strategy use and their writing. The results corroborated improvement in the students’ writing skill expedited by the employment of cognitive strategies in their writing tasks.

Implications for Research and Practice: The findings obtained in this study suggest the necessity of integrating cognitive strategies in the writing skill of the ESL learners in accordance with the workplace demands of adequate proficiency in writing skills of the employees creating a desideratum for the polytechnic students to enhance proficiency in their writing.

Keywords: Writing skill, cognition, learning strategies, polytechnic students.