Anonymity and the Effects on Boys' Writing — Sarah Massey, Lindisfarne College, New Zealand

  • Writing (2009-10)

This action research project focuses on the impact of anonymity on boys’ writing, and more specifically, attempts to determine whether anonymity allows them to become more powerful, prolific and confident writers. A group of ten boys from a year nine class was surveyed to reveal initially what they liked or disliked about writing, how they felt about expressing feelings in their writing and what they thought would be effective in helping them to become more powerful, prolific and confident writers. Findings led to the creation of a wiki where the boys were able to submit responses anonymously to a series of statements and read anonymous feedback on their writing from their peers. Comparing the initial writing sample with the anonymous submissions, the pre-surveys and post-surveys, the nature of the feedback given and the responses from participants during individual discussion, it was found that, to some extent, anonymity did lead boys to feel more confident and powerful in their writing and encouraged them to write more prolifically. 

Read the full report.