Article published in:Multiple Perspectives on L1 and L2 Academic Literacy in Asia Pacific and Diaspora Contexts
Edited by Xiaoming Li and Christine Pearson Casanave
[Journal of Asian Pacific Communication 15:1] 2005
► pp. 97–127
Instruction and reading samples for opinion writing in L1 junior high school textbooks in China and Japan
This study examines language arts textbooks commonly used in junior high schools (grades 7, 8, and 9) in Mainland China and Japan in order to identify (1) what kinds of writing instruction are provided; and (2) how reading materials illustrating opinion writing are structured rhetorically. Findings suggest that these textbooks instruct students to follow a direct and linear pattern in opinion writing, represented by such descriptors as “good organization and paragraphing,” “clarity,” “effective supporting details and counter opinions,” and “main point placed at the beginning.” However, unlike prototypical organization of English writing, the statements of main points that appear in the beginning of model texts do not include a preview statement that forecasts the content and organization of the supporting details. This sheds light on culturally situated interpretations of deduction. In addition, a small number of texts exhibit a structure that might be interpreted as quasi-inductive. This interpretation is partly influenced by the difficulty of assigning a single text type to opinion essays. These findings call for further investigation of what purposes these texts serve, how they are written, and whether a gap exists between writing instruction and the actual texts that L1 English student writers are exposed to.
Published online: 30 June 2005
Cited by 9 other publications
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