Education and Human Sciences, College of (CEHS)


First Advisor

Roger Bruning

Date of this Version

Fall 12-2016


Wang, S. (2016). An experiment of audience awareness effects on college students' argumentative writing (Doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from UNL Digital Commons.


A DISSERTATION Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy, Major: Psychological Studies in Education (Cognition, Learning and Development), Under the Supervision of Professor Roger Bruning. Lincoln, Nebraska: December, 2016

Copyright (c) 2016 Shiyuan Wang


This experimental study explored the effects of different levels (imagined audience vs. interactive audience) and timing of audience interaction (during planning vs. revision) on undergraduate students’ self-efficacy and quality of argumentative writing. A total of 138 students from four undergraduate educational psychology courses participated in this study. Three conditions were compared: imagined audience, interactive audience during planning and interactive audience during revision. Results showed that students interacting with audience during revision produced significantly more argumentative elements (below level 1 reasons of opposing view) and had higher self-efficacy for audience awareness than the other two conditions. Students’ cognitive load and audience-related strategies utilized during the writing task were also explored. Findings generally showed that audience-related strategies and distribution of cognitive resources during different stages of writing are likely to be associated with differences in writing performance.

Advisor: Roger Bruning