The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type


Degree Name

English: Teaching English as a Second Language: M.A.




College of Liberal Arts

First Advisor

James H. Robinson

Second Advisor

John P. Madden

Third Advisor

Balasubramanian Kasi

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

ESL, language acquisition, dialogue journals, past tense verbs, order of acquisition, English education


For many years I have worked with a group of English learners at a local community college as they took on the challenge of learning English. There were some areas that I noted students particularly struggled with, one of them being applying simple past tense verbs, though they seem to have acquired irregular past tense verbs with little difficulty. With this study, I have tried to determine if using dialogue journals could enhance acquisition of simple past tense morphemes. By actively choosing to use simple past tense in my responses to them I was hoping that noticing proper application would help them acquire this skill. Due to a few factors, one of them being a lack of a control group, I was not able to absolutely prove that keeping a dialogue journal assisted students in learning past tense use, though all students demonstrated an improvement in using simple past tense on their posttests. Further study in this area would be beneficial to determine if dialogue journals could be an added benefit to the English language learner curriculum.


I would like to thank my friends and family for their constant support. You were always there when I needed encouragement and I will always be grateful. Bless you each and every one of you!