On YouTube: Types of Written Corrective Feedback (Rod Ellis)

posted by Jürgen Kurtz, Karlsruhe University of Education, Germany

All around the globe, foreign language teachers are faced with the challenging and strenuous task of correcting and evaluating written texts produced by ‘their’ learners (including some very complex products such as portfolios, etc.). In the following YouTube video clip, Rod Ellis outlines a wide range of options, going far beyond the traditional strategy of direct corrective feedback (i.e. of underlining an error and providing the learner with the ‘correct’ linguistic form):

 The full video is available here. (Apple Quicktime Player required).

Corrective feedback (written as well as oral) is a highly complex problem. Teachers need to be able to distinguish systematic errors from accidental mistakes, for instance. This is all the more important in a communicative, task-based classroom scenario in which form-focussed and message-focussed instruction need to be combined in a suitable way.

New! Ellis, Rod (2009). A typology of written corrective feedback types. ELT Journal, 63 (2), 97-107.


6 responses to “On YouTube: Types of Written Corrective Feedback (Rod Ellis)

  1. Roya Akbarzadeh

    I am M.A. student in TEFL from Iran. There are so many interesting and beneficial articles in this site. I really enjoyed them. I want to write an article on ‘The Effect of Different Types of Corrective feedback on writing proficiency of EFL students’ so if you can help me I will be so thankful. Thank you so much. :-)

    • Roya Azbarzadeh, would you like to collaborate on a study of corrective feedback? I teach adults 25 hours per week in an academic ESL program. Normally I use a mix of written feedback, audio feedback and conferencing, but am looking for a change and a much more carefully-structured approach.

    • I’m looking for background theory for written corrective feedback. What do you think? Your idea will be really thankful.

      • juergenkurtz

        Dear Jin,

        Thank you. There are so many books and articles available on this issue worldwide that it is difficult to make any specific recommendations suited to your personal needs. Rod Ellis examines types of written corrective feedback in the ELT Journal (2009); it might be a good idea to begin with this, and then use his references for further research. Do you speak German? Here are two additional suggestions (not reduced to written (!) corrective feedback though):

        Kleppin, Karin & Königs, Frank G. (1991). Der Korrektur auf der Spur. Bochum: Brockmeyer.
        Kurtz, Jürgen (2001). Improvisierendes Sprechen im Fremdsprachenunterricht. Tübingen: Narr. (chapter 1.4)

  2. Just wanted to say that I read your blog quite frequently and I’m always amazed at some of the stuff people post here. But keep up the good work, it’s always interesting.
    See ya,

  3. Dear juergenkurtz and other members,

    Thanks you soo much for your reply. Unfortunatley the only German I know is Wie heissen Sie? Rod Ellis’s article was arlready in my file. I mean background theory supporitng corrective feedback such as the noticing hypothesis; that’s what I need. Do you think Vygotskyan theory can be one?

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