English Ph.D. Dissertations


Analyzing the Feedback Preferences and Learning Styles of Second-Language Students in ESOL Writing Courses at Bowling Green State University

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


English/Rhetoric and Writing

First Advisor

Lee Nickoson (Advisor)

Second Advisor

Neal Jesse (Other)

Third Advisor

Kristine Blair (Committee Member)

Fourth Advisor

Sheri Wells-Jensen (Committee Member)


My dissertation study fills current gaps in scholarship by analyzing the feedback preferences of students enrolled in two sections of English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) 1010: Academic Composition II courses at Bowling Green State University during the Fall 2015 semester and whether or not those preferences match the students' individual learning styles as measured by a learning style inventory. Additionally, the study examines how providing feedback in different modalities (audio, video, and written) impacts student comfort levels and their perceptions of the writing classroom. Finally, the study examines the impact each feedback modality had on the students' academic performance as measured by the grades students received on essay assignments when utilizing the differing feedback modalities throughout the semester. The learning style inventory and initial feedback preference survey were provided during week 1 of the semester, and a follow-up feedback preferences survey was given during week 15. A grounded theory approach was used to analyze, code, and categorize the students' survey responses. Through classroom observation, student surveys, and grade analyses, it was clear that despite showing a preference for written feedback at the onset of the semester, the majority of students identified as visual learners, preferred video feedback, and performed better academically when they received video feedback.