An Error Analysis Of the Writing of Tanzanian University Students

Roger Andersen


This paper examines the general patterns of errors made by university
students in their essays. The study involved a group of first year students
from the University of Dar as Salaam, who wrote essays about their
linguistic backgrounds. The errors made by the students were then classified
into a number of classes. The results indicate that the highest per cents of
errors were in the over-elaboration, verbal and nominal classes. Specifically,
a good number of students made many errors relating to over-elaboration,
which is caused by over-emphasis on formal structure in the teaching of
English. The paper recommends that error analysis studies pay attention to
both the structure of the language and the discussion of language functions
and the context within which the text to be analysed is produced.


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 [ISSN 0856-9965 (Print)]