ERIC Number: ED186906
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Concept Development through Reading and Writing.
Sternglass, Marilyn S.
There is an assumption in most freshman composition classes that students have the cognitive level to be sensitive and receptive to problematic situations, to articulate the problems, and to formulate statements to set out lines of inquiry. This assumption is invalid when applied to the majority of students, and writing teachers can attest to having suffered through those students' banal prose. It is possible, however, to assess qualitatively the cognitive level of a group of students demonstrated through reading and writing assignments in which students read generally related stories, examine and evaluate ideas and principles, and work to discover concepts that can serve as controlling ideas or thesis statements. The students' thesis statements can be analyzed and categorized using a model of cognitive stages in concept development attributed to the work of Andrew Wilkinson and others in The Crediton Project. The stages or categories of cognitive measures are describing, interpreting, generalizing, and speculating, and when applied to student writing, they can be used to accurately place students in proper instructional settings. Writing teachers would do well to spend less time on teaching traditional paragraph structure that does little to improve the quality of students' thinking and more time on showing students what strategies they use when they think, teaching them to formualte and solve problems as effectively as possible. (AEA)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Indiana Council of Teachers of English Spring Conference (Indianapolis, IN, April 25-26, 1980). Several pages may have marginally legible areas.