Assessing Text Easibility of University Students’ EFL Writing in Tanzania

Erasmus Akiley Msuya

Abstract


This study is a comparative appraisal of text easibility of EFL University student writers across six disciplines: Language and Linguistics, History, Development Studies, Botanical Science, Chemistry and ICT. Each of these was comparably appraised across three years of study that characterize academic length for a Bachelor’s Degree in such disciplines. The study participants were 90 in total (30 from each year of study) and were purposively selected by the criteria of their willingness to cooperate. Each was served with a short writing task relevant to their area of study but specifically requiring them to link what they were being talk with their career aspirations. Their essays were word processed, copied and pasted to Coh-Metrix software for text easibility analysis in the aspects of syntactic simplicity, word concreteness, referential cohesion and deep cohesion. The findings revealed that that deep cohesion was high in History, Development Studies, Chemistry and ICT while narrativity was poor in all disciplines except History and ICT. Narrativity was neither dominant nor poor in any disciplines except ICT. As for years of study first year students did better than other years in deep cohesion and referential and deep cohesions but generally poor in word concreteness. Third year were good in referential cohesion but poor in syntactic simplicity while first year were referential cohesion. 


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/jsel.v5i1.11554

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