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Electronic Peer Feedback, EFL Academic Writing and Reflective Thinking: Evidence from a Confucian Context?

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Ngoc Pham, Dr Vu TrinhORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Electronic peer feedback (e-PF) has offered a number of benefits to English as a foreign language (EFL) students' academic writing competence and reflective thinking. However, little research has been conducted to examine whether e-PF can be incorporated in Confucian Heritage Culture (CHC) contexts. With a sample of 40 Vietnamese university students, the purpose of this study was threefold: (1) to explore whether e-PF improved students’ global and local features of EFL academic writing; (2) to investigate whether e-PF provoked students’ critical reflective thinking; and (3) to determine whether the two core principles of Confucianism, namely, the concept of face and power distance influenced the implementation of e-PF. Data were collected through pre- and post-questionnaires, e-PF content and reflective logs. The qualitative and quantitative results showed that e-PF improved the quality of global and local writing aspects. Using e-PF also espoused both e-PF providers and receivers to develop reflective thinking by heightening their cognitive processes. Students were found to overcome the Confucian cultural barriers to get engaged in giving and receiving critique from their peers. The study, therefore, adds to the existing knowledge about the significance of e-PF in improving students’ writing skills and nurturing critical reflective thinking in CHC cultures.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Pham TN, Lin M, Trinh VQ, Bui LTP

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Sage Open

Year: 2020

Volume: 10

Issue: 1

Online publication date: 31/03/2020

Acceptance date: 24/02/2020

Date deposited: 31/03/2020

ISSN (electronic): 2158-2440

Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd


DOI: 10.1177/2158244020914554


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