Scaffolding metacognitive strategies for fifth-grade remedial writers

Margaret Anne Renner, Fordham University


This study investigated the nature and effects of scaffolding metacognitive strategies for fifth-grade remedial writers. The areas addressed were: (a) the construction of the metacognitive scaffold, (b) the use of the scaffold during the composing process, (c) the writers' conscious metacognitive reporting (think alouds) while composing, and (d) the writers' responses to the survey regarding the efficacy of scaffolding. The theoretical rationale for this study was based on theories of language learning, metacognitive scaffolding, and the composing process. The five participants in this study received scaffold-based instruction for 15 weeks. The study consisted of three phases: the pretest (writers' interview), the scaffold-based instruction and generated samples, and the posttests (verbal reports, a writer's survey, and the New York State Elementary Writing Test). An analysis of the data indicated that the participants composed better text after the scaffolding intervention. They were also able to report and reflect on their conscious metacognitive behavior during the composing process. The writer's survey indicated that the participants found the scaffold-based instruction beneficial, and that their self-efficacy regarding composing had improved. The results of the New York State Elementary Writing Test (PEP) (The university of the State of New York, 1998) indicated that these remedial writers were able to produce proficient text. In this study, using scaffold-based instruction assisted the participants in developing metacognitive behavior for composing, and was found to be an effective writing intervention. This study concluded that scaffolding, although challenging, was both beneficial and efficacious for the participants.

Subject Area

Literacy|Reading instruction|Language arts|Elementary education|Cognitive therapy

Recommended Citation

Renner, Margaret Anne, "Scaffolding metacognitive strategies for fifth-grade remedial writers" (1999). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9938916.