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Effectiveness of an Online Writing System in Improving Students’ Writing Skills in Engineering

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Best of Computer in Education Division

Tagged Division

Computers in Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.466.1 - 23.466.15



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Paper Authors


Patricia R Backer San Jose State University

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Dr. Backer is director of General Engineering at San Jose State University. Her research interests are in broadening the participation of women and URM students in engineering and assessment of engineering programs.

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Effectiveness of an Online Writing System in Improving Students’ Writing Skills in EngineeringAbstractTechnology and Civilization is an advanced general education course (Area V: Culture,Civilization & Global Understanding) in the College of Engineering at XXX University that isdesigned to introduce students to the realm of history and usage of technology in society from aninternational perspective and to increase their awareness of both the uncertainties as well as thepromises of the utilization of technology as a creative human enterprise.Recently, universities have begun to explore using online technologies to increase instructorefficiency and serve more students. Many online software writing programs that are supposedly"studied" have data studies funded by the publishing companies that create such software. It isimportant to see valid and benchmarked data conducted on representative samples and withlearning outcome measures and protocols with high reliability and validity scores. Studentimprovements in writing increase with more practice and opportunities to write, accompanied byspecific, constructive feedback from faculty with opportunities for revisions. However, withclass sizes increasing, how can engineering professors give suitable writing feedback tostudents?It is crucial as new technologies are used for instruction that student learning is emphasized. Thispaper will present detailed data on student achievement of the course and General Educationlearning objectives. This course utilized the ETS Criterion Writing Evaluation System to allowthe students to get enhanced feedback on their writing. In this paper, we will analyze the effectsof Criterion on student learning outcomes. We will compare student performance from theCriterion pilot with existing assessment data from this course.

Backer, P. R. (2013, June), Effectiveness of an Online Writing System in Improving Students’ Writing Skills in Engineering Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19480

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