Monday, July 23, 2012

Sharing Research About Writing

My "cup of tea" reading this morning was a link from the national Writing Project Daily  about a study of writing on the University of Pittsburgh campus.

This research study suggests:

Students value:

  • Opportunities to write about something that matters to them
  • Opportunities for new thinking and learning
  • Opportunities to dig deeply and make connections
  • Explicit understanding of the assignment's relation to the course material
  • Specific guidelines
  • Feedback (comments, what works as well as what could be improved)
  • Time
  • Models

  • Teachers (professors) value:
    • Making writing a predictable classroom exercise
    • Using writing to promote thinking
    • Using shorter, not graded papers (often written in class) to engage students but also to assess what they know.
    • Breaking larger projects into smaller components

    I think I've heard this before, but it is important to realize that what "makes writing" instruction worthwhile is similar at every stage of the journey. 

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