Guest Blogger: Dr Muhammad M. M. Abdel Latif
Dr Muhammad Abdel Latif's book Writing Motivation Research, Measurement and Pedagogy is an essential reference and a unique resource for writing teachers and researchers. This six-chapter book provides an overview of the issues pertinent to assessing, researching and nurturing writing motivation. It highlights these theoretical, practical and research issues by drawing upon relevant literature and empirical research evidence.
In this blog, the main insights provided by this book are summarized.
Types of writing motivation constructs
Drawing upon the comprehensive review of relevant literature, Abdel Latif identifies eight main constructs of writing motivation, and groups them into the following four types:
Below are the definitions of these constructs:
Abdel Latif discusses the varied conceptualizations of these key writing motivation constructs, highlights the other constructs similar to them, and provides an overview of the scales developed to assess each main construct and sample items from them. Additionally, he highlights the other broad and impure/non-motivational constructs of writing. These include: writing self-perceptions, procrastination and styles, writer's block, and writing motivation and engagement. The two chapters covering these issues aim at helping readers understand the nature of writing motivation and the types of its constructs, and know how to assess its constructs using accurate scales.
The characteristics of motivated versus demotivated student writers
Drawing on empirical research evidence, Abdel Latif discusses the variables and factors associated with the varied writing motivation levels. He classifies these variables and factors into the following three main categories:
In light of the research-based discussion of these factors, Abdel Latif provides two interesting profiles summarizing the affective, behavioural and performance characteristics of motivated and demotivated student writers.
Instructional research of writing motivation
In his book, Abdel Latif also highlights the instructional research of writing motivation. Specifically, he reviews the studies examining the effect of particular instructional treatments on improving students' writing motivation. The writing instructional treatments highlighted in the book are categorized into the following six types:
Through highlighting the studies relevant to each of these writing instruction types, Abdel Latif provides clear descriptions of the instructional treatments used, their instructional settings (i.e., L1 versus L2 writing contexts), and their potential impact on fostering particular aspects in learners' writing motivation. Thus, the book provides adequate information and insightful ideas to the readers interested in experimenting any of these instructional treatments.
Research-driven guidelines for motivating students to write
An important part in the book is concerned with the research-driven guidelines proposed for motivating students to write. Drawing upon the research evidence and pedagogical implications found in the descriptive, correlational and instructional studies reviewed in the book, Abdel Latif provides the following six main guidelines for motivating students to write:
These six guidelines are rationalized and delineated with the 42 proposed pedagogical procedures they include. Abdel Latif views that each main guideline promotes some writing motivation aspects rather than others, and that writing teachers can implement the procedures representing each guideline depending on their students' writing demotivation symptoms and their causes.
Interested in guest blogging for the National WRITE Center? See our guidelines by clicking here.