Writing and Related Problems for EFL Students

Document Type : Research Paper


Tabriz University


ESL students who write in English may present written material in a rhetorical and organizational mode that reflects the pattern which is valued in their native culture and rhetoric. Considering the violation of English code of writing in the writings of Iranian students, we will notice one common characteristic: They are reluctant (or ignorant of) to write a unified paragraph. Their writing consists of one whole page or two. They do not divide their writing into separate paragraphs. The knowledge of the writer on any subject begins and ends as much as the time or space for writing allows with no paragraph separation. The length of sentences is extraordinary, and the position of modifiers does not seem natural according to the code of English sentence pattern. This means that elements transferred from L1 rhetoric result in a production which does not match the English language style and rhetoric, despite the fact that some students lack grammatical competence. As a result, this type of writing is labeled unacceptable, vague or erroneous by English language standards. The focus of this study is to use English major students' writings to identify the elements which violate English language pattern of writing. The sources of errors responsible for non-English language rhetoric will be classified after a short theoretical review in the literature and finally suggestions for the elimination of errors will be presented.


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