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Today I collect my student’s Dialog Journal. Dialog Journal is a kind of diary but in more formal form. I asked my students to write (1) what you learn today, (2) what advantages you get, and (3) what questions you have. I did not ask the whole classes to do this, just two classes. If there were too many classes to involve, it will consume too much time and energy to respond to their journals. I do this in the name of research. I will study what effect that may come up to my students if they are given a chance to write freely and take me as their reader for their works and get feedback from me.

So far from what I know. Every time students make a piece of writing, it is only to fulfill task and only to get mark. Now, I will try to make myself as the reader for my students’ work and I write/respond to their writing. It is like making pen-pal. The writing then becomes more personal. I hope by doing this, my students writing ability will improve.  And my students know that their writing have audience. So in this case, writing is seen as two-dimensional activity.

Dialog Journal makes teacher and students communicate in written form.  Besides that, there are many advantages that students can get. Use of dialogue journals with students who are reluctant to write can improve their attitude towards writing as well as their ability to write in English. Teachers have always had problems with reluctant writers especially those who are foreign language learners. I do this to find out the effect of using dialogue journals on the students’ confidence in writing and their ability to write. Using dialogue journals as the strategy to use with reluctant writers provides students with authentic purpose for writing without fear of correction or censure and exposes them to models of appropriate language structure from their teacher. By doing this I hope my students show improvement in writing in their foreign language and wrote in more conventional spelling of words. In addition to this, they had better attitude towards writing as shown by the significant difference in the attitude survey the students took before and after using dialogue journals.

The feedback that I give on the right side include commenting to the aspects that my students’ write, responding to questions, posing questions and challenges, proposing a new topic to discuss, and write personal thing.

I will limit the dialog till the fifth. I guess I had enough data to analyze. The problem that may emerge and I must consider is that I have to search for the literature review. Finding what others had done with dialog journal is another challenging thing. If my report is not supported by experts, I am a half way to fail in making academic writing.



  1. juliana says:

    can you show or explain me how you apply dialogue journal writing in classroom instruction. How you fit it with the curriculum, may be in terms of lesson scenario/lesson plan. Can dialogue journal apply in senior high school level particularly in Indonesia?
    Need your answer!!!!

    • badriah says:

      I apply two kinds of Dialog journal: based-paper Dialog journal and E-Dialog Journal (e-mail dialog journal with internet based connection applied). Both fit the curriculum and I teach Secondary level students.
      For the novice students who are not familiar with Dialog journal, it is recommended to introduce paper-based dialog journal. We can introduce Dialog Journal as part of writing instruction, I employ ‘free writing’. As I want to explore the authentic communication then free writing is the answer.
      Since Dialog journal is a kind of Penugasan Terstruktur (PT), so it is included in lesson plan as PT.
      If my answer does not meet your question, meet me at miss_bi68@yahoo.co.id

  2. juliana says:

    What do you mean by paper-based dialogue journal? Paper-based dialogue journal is writing task that you give to your each student in which they write what they want to write in the classroom activity/writing lesson (not as homework), isn’t it? How many times do you ask them to write a week? As far as I know, ‘journal writing’ including dialog journal writing means regularly writing.

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