Annotated Bibliography on Aljaafreh & Lantolf’s Negative Feedback and ZPD

Eva Jin

Aljaafreh, A., & Lantolf, J. P. (1994). Negative feedback as regulation and second language learning in the zone of proximal development. The Modern Language Journal, 78(4), 465-483.

This paper, published in 1994, is not outdated in 2016. Alijaafreh and Lantolf are pioneers who initially apply ZPD (zone of proximal development) in error correction in L2 writing feedback. They present an comprehensive literature review on L2 writing feedback, link L2 writing teaching practice with L2 writing feedback theories/researches, and argue that feedback is supposed to be negotiation between the novice and the expert, being “graduate” and “contingent”.

For L2 writing instructors/teachers, this paper can be fundamental to their teaching methodologies. Detailed description for this case study serves as a classroom close-up for teachers to follow: Such as how to give implicit/explicit feedback; how to optimize their feedback; how to tailor their tutoring to the special needs of their students. More importantly, this study provides quantified regulatory scale for Implicit-Explicit feedback that can be directly applied in L2 writing tutoring by teachers; and Developmental Criteria for teachers to assess L2 writers and decide what is the next “nudge” for them, which is called ZPD-tuned feedback.

For L2 writing researchers, the paper serves as encyclopedia for major attitudes towards feedback in L2 writing. And it points the directions for future researches: teacher-reliance and self-awareness in L2 writing development. While ZPD-tuned assistance proves to be efficient by another case study (Nassaji & swain, 2000), its universal applicability remains to be examined in broader context.

As for my paper writing, the findings can be cited as evidence for the innovative L2 feedback mechanism. And it is also a framework for L2 writing feedback.




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