Introducing a Computer-assisted Method for Teaching Summarizing Skills to EIL/EFL Students

Robert G. Lantin


The paper introduces a computer-assisted method for teaching summarizing skills to EIL/EFL students—the Event Ordering method, or EVO for short. EVO, I shall contend, helps students develop basic reasoning skills. To support this claim, I argue that over time, EVO introduces a recurrent ‘loop’ process whereby readers become increasingly adept at projecting logical relations between events as they read, thus enabling them to foresee and make informed guesses as to which events from a narrative—typically from graded readers—would most likely find their way into the summary. This, I shall further argue, has two significant consequences: (i) it helps students build organizational skills—for being able to detect and make logical connections between important events is precisely what summarizing asks of readers; and (ii) it helps students become better readers. In the first section of the paper, I introduce the various theoretical aspects of EVO; I then move on, in section two, to support EVO with several samples of student writing.

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