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To learners and teachers of English as a
second or foreign language, the role of feedback in the language learning
process is crucial in two aspects – it allows L2 learners to monitor how they
are performing in their language classes, and it also informs language teachers
how their assessment response is affecting the drive of L2 learners to learn
the language. In their study on Written Corrective Feedback (WCF), Douglas and
Nanni (2016) sought to explore the type of corrective feedback preferred by
teachers and L2 learners of a Thai tertiary institution, and their reasons for
such preference. The study focused on Ellis’ (1999, as cited in Douglas &
Nanni, 2016) three typologies of corrective feedback i.e., direct where the teacher provides the correct version of the
grammatical flaw, indirect where the
teacher simply points out the error and leave the correction to the student,
and metacognitive which involves
writing commentaries to the corrected structure.

While there exists a wealth of research
literature that have explored the effectiveness of WCF, the researchers argue
that it is only recently that attention has been paid to studying the
application of WCF in certain situations and contexts such as for instance, consulting
teachers and students about their attitudes towards WCF. Banking on previous
studies, the authors centered their research on two hypotheses – (a) first, in
determining which corrective feedback is more effective, teachers and students
do not share the same preferences and beliefs and (b) second, justifications
for such preferences may also significantly vary. Furthermore, the researchers
surmised that there is a tendency that this difference in attitudes may clash,
and failure to close this gap may lead to student demotivation.

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                  To obtain and analyze data, the
study employed the mixed method – qualitative and quantitative research
methodologies. Two survey-questionnaires were used, each specially designed and
prepared for the teacher-participants and student-respondents. It has to be
noted that the survey was done via google forms, which means that the gathering
of data was computer-mediated. 361 students participated in the study, but only
262 were able to complete the survey. On the other hand, 21 teachers were
involved in the study, all of whom are identified to be native speakers of

findings confirmed the researchers’ two hypotheses. First, the study revealed
that of the teachers who were surveyed, a majority preferred providing indirect
feedback with metalinguistic comment, whereas a number of student-respondents
favor a more direct feedback type, affirming the first hypothesis which claimed
that feedback preferences between teachers and students will vary. Second, the
study also revealed that teachers and students also differ in their
justification of their choice of feedback, affirming the second hypothesis.

                  Studies on corrective feedback is
not new; hence, one may deem this study as simply a replication or extension of
previous studies. However, this study takes confidence by the fact that it
builds on previous studies, correcting their mistakes and enhancing their
methods. With more than three hundred participants, the large sample used in
this study strengthened the veracity of the study’s data. Large sample size
meant that the results and conclusions of the study can be used to represent a
wide scope of the population.

                  Another strength of the study is its
comprehensive review of related literature and studies. The researchers took effort
to give readers a background of Thailand’s language education system, providing
readers a contextualized knowledge about the topic being explored. While the
studies cited in the research are clearly defined and explained, their recency
seems to be questionable. The research was conducted and published in 2016 but
some studies consulted were already a decade old. This is understandable if there
really exists a dearth of studies for the topic. However, the topic has already
been explored and probed in a number of studies. There should at least be more
recent sources that could have been used and consulted.

research methodology employed was the hybrid method which suits the study as it
is both quantitative and qualitative in nature. The survey-questionnaires that
were used in the study were distributed through google forms; the use of online
mediation was deemed necessary as it helped the researchers ease the laborious
task of data transcription. While there may be benefits to be reaped from using
online-mediated survey in research such as convenience, there are also downsides
to it. First, it may be difficult to provide clarifications of unclear
instructions or vague statements to respondents in the absence of the
researcher. Second, the researcher cannot really know if the actual respondents
are the ones providing responses to the survey.

with exceptions to a few minor errors, the study was well-executed. Moreover, the
effort to consult a plethora of sources and to have large sample size
established the study’s credibility and validity.




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