Best essay writing service website
Why is it students do little constructive planning? To answer this question, we developed a friendly if fictitiouscomputer that would writea paper, but the student had to construct the plan. In this study the computer prompted students with hard questions such as, "Thank you, that was a good plan, but I was always told to consider alternatives. But the bigger surprise was students who emerged from this demanding hour and a hnlf planning experiment say- ing, "This would have helped me on my paper for psychology last week" and "Can my roommate be a subject in the study? If evpr this creaky computer fiction could be such an effective prompt, what more could students do with a live respondent encouraging and prompting their thinking? Could a partner, whose attention is not consumed by planning, help a writer by (1) prompting her to consider new possioilities and then (2) at the next moment, reflecting back to the writer the shape, the strengths or the problems of her emerging plan? It was out of this exp)erience that collaborative planning took shape. Even more importantly, we wanted students to see planning as a purposeful constructive process, and to see writing as an action people take in a social, rhetorical situation.
Therefore the Blackboard metaphor was embedded in the process as a prompt and a goal both partners were aware of. We had seen how the research techniques which were so revealing to up, based on observations of writers thinking aloud, could also give students a new window on their own thinking. So we saw collabora- tive planning as a way to make thinking visible.
However, this close analysis yielded much more than a confirmation of some hopes. It showed us, for instance, that the ways students talked about purpose were not in Oie personal or rhetorical terms the instruc- tors had imagined, but in terms of generic purposes, in this case tied to the assigned genre of doing a problem analysis. More disturbing, these tapes revealed that when students discussed audience the audience was often seen as simply a mirror image of their key point— the reader was defined as someone needing or eager to hear what the writer had to say (Petraglia, Flower, Higgins, in prep).
It best essay writing service website is clearly not enough to know that students are doing an activity unless you can also see how students are thinking and learn how they are interpreting and using that activity. This step in the story of collaborative planning not only told us about our students, but pointed a way to better teaching that started where the students were. Sometimes studies of this sort look for patterns that represent what a "significant" proportion of the shidents are doing and stop.
One mark of success for a collaborative planning session would be effective rhetorical planning that leads to an improved text. However, if we look at this from the logic of the learner, we see that the job of collaborative planning is not only to build a better representation of a text,but tobuild a better representation of the task.
For some students who are still working on understanding what purposeful writingentails, the questions, prompts, and response of a partner may be helping develop a new image of goals to shoot for and of the expecta tions readers have— even when such learning does not lead to changes in the current text. It lets us see how writers deal with the prompts and responses of readers, in a face to face way, as well as with the projected readers, teachers, critics, and graders student envision. Collaborative planning is a forum in which we can see students trying to "read the context" of school, college writing, this class, this as- signment, where we can see interpretations being shaped and tested with a partner. This process shows us how a critical part of the social context in which writers participate is not the context that discourse communities, teachers, assignments per se create, but the context writers interpret and represent to them- selves.
At such moments writers are drawn to devote active attention to the dilemmas in shaping knowledge. And we have an opportunity to understand what it means for writing to be an individual, cognitive process of constructing a complex, socially negotiated meaning. This is a good place to end this essay, but the reciprocity between teaching, research and theory I have tried to highlight with these five snapshots is still very much ir motion. In the same way many of the observations made in this casebook have led not only to immediate changes in practice but to a more general understanding of how different students view planning. They are showing us, for instance, what kinds of knowledge, assump- tions, and ways of "reading" a situation students bring to writing. And they reveal different ways students and their partners build negotiated meanings. And finally, they suggest things we as teachers might do to support all of best essay writing service website these processes. Our collaborative focus on the theory and issues surrounding collaboration and planning allows our individual and informal ob- servations to contribute to developing a broader, more diversely best essay writing service website situated theory. And then the process contin- ues: Guided by the observations of this year, I, like the other teachers in this project, have a new snapshot in the making. What would my students actually dis- cover if I made observation-based reflection a key part of my assignments? Would their discoveries about themselves differ from what teachers and researchers have seen? Berke- ley: Center for the Study of Writing at University of California, Berkeley and Carnegie Mellon. The construction of purpose in writing and reading.