Students' Common Writing Problems & Practices at King Abdulaziz University: An Inquiry to Move a Writing Center From Conception Towards Conceptualization

Khalid Abalhassan
2014 Studies in Literature and Language   unpublished
This study reports the results of a quantitative investigation of the most shared writing problems and practices King Abdulaziz University (KAU) students have in common, the students' attitudes towards the teaching of basic writing and research methods, their readiness and attitude towards the kinds of activities writing centers usually have, and their self-perceptions with regards to writing skills. The study also attempts to shed some light on how the student service centers 1 (SSC) affect
more » ... dents' self-reliance and their academic achievement. The study also examines the feasibility of using the concept of writing center at King Abdulaziz. Findings of the questionnaire to which 543 subjects have responded rendered indications that a history of seeking help from SSCs exists among students, who also pointed out the need for professional academic help to be provided on campus, and the determination to use such services if conceptualized. The study also 1 SSC refers to the Student Service Centers, which are commercial services, similar to FedEx and OfficeMax copy centers. They are licensed to operate as copy and print service providers with limited stationary sales. They appeared in Saudi Arabia in 1987 when the First Student Service Center appeared in Riyadh within the outskirts of King Saud University main campus. More centers surfaced in the following years. With the expansion of the service, many of these stores started a "research help" service that provides statistical, typing, graphical design, and printing services. Along with that, some "unethical" services lied beneath where student had their research and term-papers done for them at very tempting prices. From that point, universities noticed patterns of plagiarism, recycling, and, above all, quality that goes beyond the aptitude they know their students had. These centers continue their uninterrupted services. found that a US model of WCs is feasible and reliable to adopt. A number of recommendations conclude the study.