The present study investigated the effectiveness of using collaborative writing (CW) on an individual’s writing performance. It involved a total of 61 participants who were adult ESL learners enrolled in a general English course at a language center in Cairo. All learners were assessed to be at a border-line A2/ B1 level on the CEFR scale , based on a placement exam conducted by the institute. The sample was divided into two groups: an experimental group and a control group. For both groups a pre-test and a post-test were administered to track individuals’ progress. During the treatment stage, participants in the experimental group were asked to write three writing tasks collaboratively in groups of three or four, while the individuals in the control group were asked to write the same tasks individually. After finishing the treatment stage and administering the post-test, all writing samples were scored by three raters using an analytical scoring rubric to ensure reliability of results. Then the scores for both groups were compared using t-tests to check for significant improvement in specific language features. The results of the study show a significant improvement in the overall writing quality of learners who were exposed to the collaborative writing task. Significant improvement was also observed in certain writing features, namely mechanics and organization, but not for grammar, vocabulary or content. When a textual analysis was conducted on the writing samples, the results showed that participants in the experimental group had a higher tendency to write longer texts and to add an appropriate conclusion that would properly wrap up the writing. This study offered a number of pedagogical implications as it gave further evidence of the value of using collaborative writing in the classroom and it highlighted directions that could be targeted for further research.


Applied Linguistics Department

Degree Name

MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

Graduation Date


Submission Date

February 2017

First Advisor

Agameya, Amira

Committee Member 1

Plumlee, Marilyn

Committee Member 2

Bassiouney, Reem


85 p.

Document Type

Master's Thesis


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