Writing strategies used by secondary school students in the Maldives: A combination of EMI and L2 experiences
INTI International University, Malaysia
Shirmeena Faheem, Aniyath Ali and Aishath Shina
Islamic University of Maldives, Male', Maldives
Language plays a vital role in everyday life, and language learners should make the most out of their basic education in order to use language skills to function in their future working environment. Writing is a skill used for writing letters, writing reports, news, and official documents. It is important for second language learners to be proficient in their writing skills, so learners are required to use different writing strategies to develop their writing. This study aims to investigate the writing strategies used by Maldivian second language learners in secondary school. Conducted using a qualitative research design, this study employed semi-structured interviews with four students and four language teachers purposively selected from one of the secondary schools in Male', the capital of Maldives. The coded data from student interviews revealed five significant strategies common to all participants, namely planning, mind-mapping, drafting, proofreading, and editing, while the teachers also referred to peer-reviewing and brainstorming as additional strategies that aided L2 learners' writing. The study revealed that awareness of meta-cognitive strategies is more evident in more proficient learners than in those less skilled. Limitations of the study are discussed along with recommendations for future research and for language teachers to support language learners in enhancing their writing skills.
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|Authors: Jonathan Bryce is an English lecturer and Head of IELTS Training Centre at INTI International University (IIU) in Malaysia. Coming from a commercial background in business and accountancy, he also has a degree in English Language and Literature from Exeter University in the UK, and a Masters in Education Management from IIU. He is currently pursuing his PhD in Education at IIU.
Shirmeena Faheem has been a deputy principal at an international school in Male,' Maldives. With a BA in TEFL from the Maldives College of Higher Education and a Masters degree in TESOL from the Islamic University of Maldives, she also teaches English to secondary grades, her goal being to inspire sustainable leadership.
Dr Aniyath Ali is a PhD graduate from Edith Cowan University in Western Australia and a former acting head of the National Institute of Education, Ministry of Education, Maldives. She earned both her Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and her Masters degree in Educational Management from the International Islamic University, Malaysia. Her doctoral thesis is: Ali, A. (2023). Investigating multigrade teaching (MGT) and learning practices in Maldives: Developing a framework for MGT. PhD thesis, Edith Cowan University, Western Australia. https://doi.org/10.25958/70NE-3C40 [Access to this thesis has been embargoed until 8 June 2026]
Dr Aishath Shina is currently the Acting Director of Local and International Relations at Islamic University of Maldives, Male', Maldives. She completed her PhD in Education from University Brunei Darussalam, her MA in Educational Management from University Malaya, and her BA in teaching English as a Foreign Language from Maldives National University.
Please cite as: Bryce, J., Faheem, S., Ali, A. & Shina, A. (2023). Writing strategies used by secondary school students in the Maldives: A combination of EMI and L2 experiences. Issues in Educational Research, 33(4), 1308-1323. http://www.iier.org.au/iier33/bryce.pdf