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That is, while both pairs spent significant portions of their planning session generating and rejecting topic kno wl- 76 ERIC edge, both pairs exited that revolving door. Nancy and Julie exited within, moving to deeper-level planning order a paper online while Fred and Dana exited out, taking with them tests for finding relevant topics. However, as the following excerpt illustrates, Fred and Dana did not engage in extended discussions of unpro- ductive topics, instead they used issues Siich as audi- ence and timeliness to evaluate the viability of a given topic. In the excerpt below, Dana suggests that Fred might write about one of the issues raised in a recent issue of the campus newspaper. Fred vetoes the idea citing timeliness as the issue.

Like they did a survey and asked these people about you know their testing for AIDS. If they were tested, were they positive or negative, stuff like that. Fred: We have a whole week though, and if you pick something that already happened, it would be out of date by the time we submit it. Even though the collaborators spent the majority of the session proposing and debunking various topics, Fred left the session with a sense of the kind of topic that he was looking for. Throughout most of the session, it was cloar that Julie is swimming, neariy drowning, in a sea of content knowledge. Unlike Fred, Julie had found a topic with a great deal of information and faced order a paper online the task of finding a way to recast information into a news article format. Julie and Nancy spent well over half of their session discussing and elaborating this information. In the following excerpt, problem tha t she is trying to write about, Nancy finally Julie and Nancy try to focus this content informaHon. In contrast, Nancy uses the time- article, but she was aware of her own biased attitude Hness issue to help Julie recast the information that she and suspected that her major source ("that lady") has has gathered according to a focus that is suitable for a not been candid with her. Julie responded, asking if Nancy dcrstandingof audienceallowsthemtobuildasenseof meant that she should not use comments (a technical term Collaborative Planning: CoNCEPrs, Processes, and Assign-ments 77 rhetorical exigence, that is, what information is appro- priate for this situation and how that information may be most effectively used. Their basic plan was to remove much of the information from the original technical document that the consumer audience would not need. Fred suggested that in deference to the company president, who wrote the original document, they should change his words as little as possible and con- centrate on elinrvinating unnecessary prose. In fact, there should be a lot more of that in here... Unlike their first session where they focused on finding a topic for Fred, here topic or content knowl- edge provided the backdrop for rhetorical planning.

The rhetorical concerns of two audiences, the con- sumer audience for the technical document and the corporate chain of command for the accompanying in- house memo, evenhially become so salient that they compel the writers to consider not simply what to write but what to write to whom.

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Gradually, however, they build a wore sophisticated understanding of their in-house audi- ence and how its needs may conflict with the needs of the consumer audience. Thus, this more complex under- standing of their audiences provides a more effective basis for assessing the viability of their plans. PoRTRArr Six: Minimal Knowledge Transformation The snapshot of knowledge transfomnation cap- tured in this order a paper online final portrait suggests that knowledge- driven planning may be effective when the demands of a writing task are not excessive. In this set of planning sessions, the task is again very different,and the writers adjust their collaborative planning accordingly. This time the pairs of writers met to talk about their plans for a memo proposing order a paper online and justifying revisions to a com- puter documentation project that the four students had written as a group project. Each writer had user-tested a portion of the document, and thus, both planning sessions focused largely on sharing information. The rhetorical aspects of this assignment were quite familiar to the shidents. The audience for the revision proposal was the teacher, and the memo for- mat was well-specified in the handout describing the writing assignment. Not surprisingly ttien, these final two sessions are largely knowledge driven.

One of the most useful things the writers could do in this situation was to share and compare what they had learned in their user-testing session.

Thus, the collaborative plan- ning sessions focused largely on sharing content knowledge, and there was little need to transform topic information. However, even though these sessions focus largely on sharing information, Nancy and Julie take an extra step, ending their session by consolidat- ing their lists of issues into categories. Although they did not engage in extensive knowledge transformation, the sessions allowed each of the writers to talk order a paper online out the information gathered in user-testing. Fred: She said that, she made the same point that Don (the instructor! She said it was easy to follow, and she said that it was designed well. As this excerpt illustrates, Dana served as a sounding board in this segnKjnt of their planning session, taking conversational turns and occasionally making substan- tive comments. Again given the nature of this assignment, these knowledge-driven interactions are sensible. Julie: Yeah, well that could be a proposal, have someone else look at it.

Here, Nancy and Julieconsolidate their listsof informa- tion under topic headings (e. Although little knowledge transformation occurs in either of theses planning sessions, both were cleariy efficient.

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