Reading: Facebook as a Venue for Learning Writing Skills in English: A Survey Based on an ELT Experiment


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Facebook as a Venue for Learning Writing Skills in English: A Survey Based on an ELT Experiment


Dilini Jayarathna

University of Colombo- Institute of Agro-technology and Rural Sciences (UCIARS), Diggahakoratuwa, Karaputugala, Kamburupitiya, LK
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Facebook is a website that allows users who sign-up for free profiles, to connect online with friends, work colleagues, or strangers while providing prospects to share pictures, music, videos, and articles, as well as their thoughts and opinions with people they prefer. Considering its capacity to build networks out of various types of interest groups among young people, this study strives to investigate the utilization of a Facebook group as a platform for teaching and learning English as a Second Language (ESL). In the present experiment, a sample of 30 intermediate-level ESL learners joined with a Facebook group under the banner “Time for Writing” to learn paragraph writing in English for a period of six weeks. Throughout the period, the teacher presented the lesson material and instruction on paragraph writing via Facebook while assessing students’ writing along with constructive feedback in the same way. Moreover, the students employed the Facebook group to share their work with the entire group including the teacher, correct the work of their peers, and exchange their feedback on each other’s work. After the relevant period, the group of participants assembled in a traditional classroom situation, writing paragraphs by means of the paper-based method. Thus, they were facilitated to compare the Facebook environment and the traditional classroom environment and were expected to provide their feedback on the two types of ESL settings. The findings achieved through a review of their responses to the two respective pedagogical settings, online via social media and classroom with physical amenities and resources, reveal that learning via a Facebook group has benefits in terms of boosting confidence, intensifying motivation, and promoting connected learning, despite a few challenges concerned with distractions and technical problems. Moreover, the results suggest Facebook as an innovative learning setting that is appealing, motivating and full of social interactions which are incredible in comparison to traditional teaching practices. The findings of the study may help ESL educators in incorporating Facebook into their teaching repertoire.
How to Cite: Jayarathna, D. (2021). Facebook as a Venue for Learning Writing Skills in English: A Survey Based on an ELT Experiment. Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities Review, 6(1), 1–19. DOI:
Published on 29 Dec 2021.
Peer Reviewed


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