Electronic Theses and Dissertations



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Committee Chair

Teresa Dalle

Committee Member

Emily Thrush

Committee Member

Angela Thevenot

Committee Member

Evelyn Fogel


The influence of tests and assessments on learning and teaching is known as the washback effect. The purpose of this study is to investigate the washback effect of self and peer assessment in Arabic writing as a second language. The study was conducted on high school advanced Arabic learners at an Islamic school in the USA. The study examines the learners attitudes and perceived capability towards self and peer assessment, their perceived importance of using self and peer assessment in revision, and their perceived effectiveness of taking the two assessments together. Moreover, the study seeks to reveal whether self and peer assessments have washback effects on revision and whether considering peer writers self-assessment in peer assessment has washback effects on learning writing. Throughout a mixed-methods approach, two questionnaires, that is, pre-and post- and learners interviews, were employed to elicit the data. The findings demonstrated that learners held more positive attitudes and perceptions towards the two assessments after taking the assessments. The study also concluded that self and peer assessment had mostly positive washback effects on revising writing. Some of the washback effects that appeared to be jointly caused by the two assessments included helping to meet the writing genre needs, filling writing gaps, and creating metacognitive awareness. Other effects that were found to be caused by either self or peer assessment included editing through self-assessment but learning new lexical items and becoming creative through peer assessment. It was also found that the use of a peers self-assessment in peer assessment made peer assessors reinforce and expand on peers self-critiques, but that restricted their decision-making. Conversely, the lack of a peers self-assessment in peer assessment resulted in independent and fresh peer assessments. Finally, the whole assessment process made learners obtain multiple feedback perspectives, getting more familiarized with their writing gaps, and having a more effortless experience doing a peer assessment with the consideration of the peer writers self-assessment. Finally, the study suggests a constant examination of washback of alternative assessments (e.g., self and peer assessment) as those findings can detect the effective and ineffective sides of the assessment.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest