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Free automatic corrective feedback on writing errors

 
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Is the Virtual Writing Tutor useful for your learner population?
Yes!
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
Yes, but it needs to be developed more.
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
No, not useful
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
Total Votes : 0

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Bokomaru



Joined: 13 Apr 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Montreal

PostPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2012 12:52 pm    Post subject: Free automatic corrective feedback on writing errors Reply with quote

Hello teachers,

I want to share a link to a free online grammar checker for use with your ESL/EFL students.

Virtual Writing Tutor

On the main page, there is a textbox that you can compose in or paste text into. Click "Check for errors" to receive feedback messages for each error found. I find this particularly useful for teachers, as the system does not attempt to correct the errors for the student. It simply provides guidance on how to self-correct by showing the context of the error, suggesting a correction, and providing a rule.

At the top of the page, there is a link to a second page Test yourself! with random error presented each time the page loads. The idea is to show off the L2 errors that the system can catch and to give learners a chance to develop an eye for those errors.

If there is an error that the system doesn't catch and you think it should,
there is an email at the top to encourage community involvement.

Please, check it out and leave a reply with your thoughts here.

Thanks
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Bokomaru



Joined: 13 Apr 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Montreal

PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 2:59 am    Post subject: Individualized practice Reply with quote

Hello again,

Try this text in The Virtual Writing Tutor and hit "Check for errors".

My teacher is american. He lives at Seoul since two years with his dog. Its ugly, but he love it. Maybe, he got the dog because it provides protection for his family. He sended me an email. I forgetted to open it. I feeled bad, and then I losed his email address.

You will notice that the system reminds you of the context of the error, puts a squiggle under it, suggests a correction, provides an explanation, and links to error-correction practice activities for each error.

Please, let me know if there is any teacher or student out there who uses automated corrective feedback. I short reply?

Thanks
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longshikong



Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 88

PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 4:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice concept but it seems Word, as limited as it is, does a slightly better job. The explanations aren't going to help students at or below upper intermediate in their reading comprehension. I'd pass the link on to my students if it were up to the standard of professional writing programs such as White Smoke. Otherwise, I'm just going to insist they use Word rather than their freemail to write to me.
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Bokomaru



Joined: 13 Apr 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Montreal

PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello longshikong,

Thank-you for you reply. It is a work in progress and any feedback you can offer will really help to bring this project to maturity.

>Word, as limited as it is, does a slightly better job.

I am shocked hear anyone make this claim. Clearly, you did try the example paragraph I provided. If you had, you would have seen that the system is vastly superior in pedagogical approach to corrective feedback for the following reasons:

1. The VWT does not correct grammar errors. In contrast, Word provides users with a right-click context menu where the learner need only select a correction. With the VWT, the learner must correct errors for him or herself. The VWT's focus is on error correction as a skill.

2. The VWT provides links to remedial practice activity to help the learner eliminate errors in the future. To my knowledge, Word does not offer remedial activities.

3. The VWT can find L2 errors that Word misses. See http://virtualwritingtutor.com/random_error.php for some recent examples.

Nevertheless, your point about reading comprehension and grammar explanations is well-taken. I will make an effort to simplify the explanations.

After querying the database attached to the VWT, I see that someone from China on May 8th submitted one sentence: "He going to swim." I have since tried to simplify the explanation for that particular type of error and I have added a link to three remedial quizzes.

I hope you will give the VWT a second chance and try some of the remedial activities offered. The more people use it, the more I can use the authentic errors of your learner population to make it better.

Thanks!
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Bokomaru



Joined: 13 Apr 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Montreal

PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 9:08 pm    Post subject: A nw look for the Virtual Writing Tutor Reply with quote

The VirtuallWritingTutor has a new look and functionality. You can now report missed errors and false alarms. See the About Us tab for information about the project or visit the blog.
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