Date of Award

Summer 1991

Degree Type

Thesis - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Bogenschild, Erika

Second Advisor

Leslie, Lauren

Third Advisor

Platz, Donald


This research project originated with a concern about the magazine articles zealously extolling the praises of computers in the classroom without research to support such claims. In addition, this author was uneasy about the purchase of computers and software without regard for curriculum planning. Thus, it seemed that the addition of computers in the English classroom was to be the fad of the 80's. Without research, both descriptive and empirical, computer use could fade before the technology had an opportunity to demonstrate its value in the teaching/learning process. Subsequently in the review of the related literature, this author continued to find mixed results among the research projects addressing the issue of computers in the English curriculum. The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of word processing and interactive software on writing maturity as measured by changes in compound and complex sentence structures and the subordination ratio of the students' sentences. It was postulated that the graphic sentence analyzer in Writer's Helper Stage II would help the student transfer writing concepts practiced in the classroom to his/her writing.