The impact of an online collaboration tool on first-year community college students’ learning of expository writing
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This exploratory study examined the reading-writing connection and the effects of online collaboration through the use of OneNote on improving the expository writing performance of first-year community college students. The intervention was a 10-week integrated reading and writing instructional program focused on systematically developing discrete expository writing skills each week. Peer collaboration and technology were used to support students in developing higher-order cognitive skills characteristic of source-based writing. Data were collected from 70 students enrolled in four sections of a communications course in a large community college, with sections assigned to either a control or treatment group. Pre- and post-writing tests and standardized reading tests measuring three different reading attributes were analyzed to examine correlations and performance of the control and treatment groups. The findings included a significant difference in the treatment lower-proficiency sub-group’s writing performance, indicating that the instructional framework with the technology-supported collaborative setting had a positive effect.