ERIC Number: ED199760
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Re: Revision--An Analysis of the Revision Strategies of College Writers.
In a study of the revision strategies used by skilled and basic (unskilled) writers, 50 students assigned to an experimental group wrote an expository essay, then rewrote their compositions from memory. A control group of 20 students was given the same assignment, but the students were allowed access to their first drafts. As expected, the control group displayed little evidence of revision, while the experimental group produced pairs of essays that presented from 10% to 100% differences in content. Within the experimental group, the skilled and unskilled writers showed such marked differences that they appeared to be involved in different experiments: the basic writers demonstrated a consistent tendency to regard the second writing task as divorced from the first essay, while the skilled writers demonstrated a distinct awareness of the relationship between their two essays. On the other hand, the unskilled writers in the experimental group showed more improvement in their second drafts than did their counterparts in the control group, an indication that basic writers are not incapable of extensive, productive revisions, though the distracting presence of rough notes and first drafts simply impedes their revising processes. Based on these results, a three-phase procedure of revising from memory, comparing drafts, and synthesizing dissonant ideas was proposed to help student writers develop a pattern of revision. (RL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Revision (Written Composition)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (32nd, Dallas, TX, March 26-28, 1981).