Page 6 - Revista AXIOMA 23
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Mónica Raquel Tamayo Maggi, Diego Christian Cajas Quishpe

        INTRODUCTION                                          morphology, semantics and syntax of the target language. Consequently,
                                                              due to the Spanish language influence, learners start to confront serious
                                                              limitations in using the target language (Afrin, 2016). In a similar vein,
        Writing in English is becoming increasingly important in today’s world,   Brown (2014) mentions that language competence, which deals with lear-
        particularly in education and business areas. We are in an era where   ners’ ability to use grammar, vocabulary, and organization of a good para-
        due to the influence of the internet and social media, people, especially   graph, can also affect the development of students’ writing skills.
        the new generations, expand their horizons and are more interconnec-
        ted despite physical distance. Communicating with people from different   It is important that studies in the area of Writing go beyond the teaching
        countries has never been as easy as it is now. Due to technology's ad-  methodology and start considering other aspects which may be why tea-
        vantages, any person can express their ideas and beliefs through blogs,   ching writing has become challenging for teachers in language centers
        posts in social media, websites, or online forums. In this context, writing   in Ecuadorian universities. Focusing only on the teaching methodology
        plays a fundamental role since it is through letters that people can ex-  may not be enough to understand the intricate nuances that prevents
        press themselves. Unfortunately, most people do not take enough time to   teachers from teaching writing at the tertiary level.  This study therefore,
        reflect on the type of texts they compose and immediately upload their   aims to address the difficulties and challenges that EFL teachers en-
        writings online without an adequate revision resulting in texts which do   counter when they teach writing to university students.
        not consider the writing conventions and are difficult to understand.
        It is important to consider that Writing is a productive skill aimed at ex-
        pressing the writer`s ideas in a written manner.  Through writing, people
        can provide meaning to their ideas and abstract ways of thinking via   Among the existing studies carried out in ELT in Ecuadorian universities,
        selected words which are presented to different audiences in online or   there is a lack of research aiming to describe or identify the difficulties
        printed forms (Liu & Kunnan, 2016). A proper piece of writing requires a   teachers have when teaching Writing to university students. Most of the
        coordination between content, grammar, vocabulary, spelling, organiza-  studies in teaching writing in the country focus more on teaching tech-
        tion and mechanics (Jahin & Idrees, 2012). Hence, grammar presents a   niques and strategies rather than what teachers confront when teaching
        set of rules that support the development of well-constructed sentences   this skill. Not considering the factors that may cause difficulties in tea-
        with an appropriate meaning (Manolescu, 2019).  Vocabulary, on the   ching writing can hinder the advantages of any intervention to improve
        other hand, plays an important role by providing the learners with the   instruction.
        English words to express and organize their thoughts logically, coherent-
        ly, and cohesively in a paragraph (Hundarenko, 2019).    In this regard, this study aims to identify the difficulties and challenges
                                                              that Ecuadorian EFL teachers encounter when they teach writing to uni-
        However, learning how to write is not an easy task, not only for those   versity students. Thus, an exploratory research methodology was used
        learning English as foreign language but also for native speakers (Es-  since “it permits the researcher to have a better understanding of the
        meralda, 2013).  Brown (2014) highlights that  the teaching of writing   existing problem” (Guerring, 2012). Also, due to the limited local litera-
        skills involves more than providing general explanations and instructions    ture in this area, through this methodology, the researchers aim to bring
        about how to write  correct grammatical sentences;  it consists of the   into discussion the influence that other aspects that are different from
        formulation and manipulation of ideas and concepts to express them in   teaching methodology can have in developing students’ writing skills.
        the most appropriate language. Sumarsih, & Sanjaya, D. (2013) add that
        it is essential for EFL students to “create written products that manifest   To achieve this study's objective, the researchers sent an invitation to
        mastery over contextually appropriate formats to present ideas rhetori-  participate in this research to EFL teachers working in three different
        cally as well as mastery in all language areas”.      public university language centers. The invitation contained the study
                                                              description of the study and the criteria for the selection, namely, more
        Considering the importance of writing in English, many EFL teachers have   than five (years) of teaching writing to EFL students in higher education.
        made great efforts to teach this skill. Regrettably, this task has become   After receiving the invitation, ten (10) teachers (4 male and 6 female)
        very challenging because it involves developing the learners’ linguistic   confirmed their willingness to participate. Due to the distance among
        and communicative competence (Bilal, Tariq, Din, Latif, & Anjum, 2013).    universities, the researchers interviewed the participants online.
        To understand the challenges presented when teaching Writing, resear-
        chers in different parts of the globe have carried out studies in this area.   The participant’s teaching experience ranged from six (6) to fifteen (15) years.
        For instance, the research results that focused on teachers’ methods in   The data was collected through a structured interview whose main objective
        teaching writing conducted in Palestine showed that the methods used   was to identify the challenges of teaching writing to university students.  The
        were monotonous and affected the students´ learning outcomes. To im-  researchers also used a thematic analysis to analyze the data.
        prove writing teaching, the researchers proposed blended writing activi-
        ties (Abas & Bakir, 2013).  Another study investigated teachers’ problems   RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
        in teaching writing to students at an intermediate level and the findings
        suggested that WLA (Writing Learning Approach) proposed by Jeremy   What was commonly voiced by all participants is that teaching writing
        Harmer is an effective method to teach writing (Bilal et al., 2013).   is challenging. Thus, to systematically present the challenges that tea-
                                                              chers confront when teaching Writing to university students, the data
        The above studies concentrate mostly on the methodology used to teach   results are organized and presented in four main categories. Namely, a)
        Writing, leaving apart other equally important aspects. For example, lack   students’ English language competency, b) Spanish language interfe-
        of motivation, limited reading activities and the influence of the mother   rence, c) students’ lack of motivation to write in English, and d) teaching
        tongue (Ngoc Anh, 2019). The mother tongue, in turn, is considered a very   practices.
        influential factor in the success of a learner’s Writing in EFL (Lightbown  &
        Spada 2013). Hence Spanish interferences are usually presented in the

        AXIOMA - Revista Científica de Investigación, Docencia y Proyección Social. Julio - Diciembre 2020. Número 23, pp 5-9.
        ISSN:  1390-6267- E-ISSN:  2550-6684
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