Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum and Instruction (PhD)

Degree Level



Curriculum and Instruction


Christian Z. Goering

Committee Member

Vicki S. Collet

Second Committee Member

Jason L. Endacott


Chinese learner, English as a second language, writing instruction, writing perceptions


This study explores how a young writers camp that catered to 40 Chinese English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners, ranging from students entering the fourth grade to seventh grade, mediated the students’ writing perceptions. More specifically, the main objective of this research was to investigate the impact of the camp on the students' perceptions of writing and their self-identification as writers. The study employed the theoretical framework of Cultural Historical Activity Theory to guide the analysis. Various types of data were collected from the 40 participating students, including pre- and post-camp survey questions, classroom observations, and open-ended interviews. By employing a mixed methods approach, the collected data provided valuable insights. The findings revealed that the students not only acquired new mental tools related to writing during the camp but also demonstrated a proactive engagement in activities that boosted their identification as writers. In summary, this study demonstrated how the young writers camp changed the students' perspectives on writing and their self-concept as writers. The utilization of Cultural Historical Activity Theory and the analysis of mixed methods data shed light on the students' appropriation of new tools and subsequent actions in fostering their new writer identity.

Available for download on Saturday, August 30, 2025