Exploring the potential of Google Doc in facilitating innovative teaching and learning practices in an EFL writing course

Author: Mohammed Abdullah Alharbi

Keywords: Feedback exchanges, text revision, face-to-face-peer review, computer-assisted peer review, article report writing, collaborative writing

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/17501229.2019.1572157

The aim of this study was to explore the potential of Google Docs in facilitating and supporting pedagogical practices in a writing course at a large Saudi university. As a qualitative case study, the study was conducted among 10 EFL learners working in five pairs on article report writing over one academic semester. The instructor’s observation and comments, learners’ comments and text revisions through Google Docs, as well as their follow-up interviews were qualitatively analyzed. The findings show that Google Docs supports writing instruction, specifically through (1) instructor and peer feedback that focuses on global and local issues in writing, (2) peer editing and drafting of writing at the global and local levels and (3) peer responses to feedback. Quantification of feedback and learners’ text revisions revealed variations between the instructor and peer feedback and among the five pairs of students. The thematic analysis revealed the students’ positive views of Google Docs supported pedagogical practices in writing.