Comparison of Two Writing Processes: Direct versus Translated Composition

Li-fang ZHAI


To explore the results of two different composing processes, one writing directly in English and the other writing first in Chinese and then translating into English, this study concerns itself with the essays resulting from the two composing processes performed by participants with different levels of proficiency. The results show that the quality the compositions is significantly influenced by the writing modes and this vary with students’ L2 proficiency. The lower-level learners benefit most from the translated writing, whereas there is no significant difference for the higher-level learners.
Key words: L2 writing, L1 influence, L2 proficiency, direct writing, translated writing
Résumé: Pour explorer les résultats des deux processus de composition différents, l’un consistant à écrire directement et l’autre à écrire d’abord en chinois et puis traduire en anglais, cette étude traite les essais résultant des deux processus de composition réalisés par des participants de différents niveaux. Les résultats montrent que la qualité de composition est largement influencée par le modèle d’écriture et que cela varie d’après le niveau de maîtrise de L2 des étudiants. Les apprenants de bas niveau bénéficient généralement de l’écriture traduite tandis qu’il n’y pas de différences signifiantes pour les étudiants de haut niveau.
Mots-Clés: écriture en L2, influence de L1, maîtrise de L2, écriture directe, écriture traduite

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