ERIC Number: ED205950
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Evaluation in the Writing Conference: An Interactive Process.
Freedman, Sarah Warshauer
Because student-teacher conferences appear to be more effective than other methods of writing evaluation, a study was conducted to observe how students' writing changed over a semester and whether those changes were related to the conversations in student-teacher conferences. Two college freshman composition students--one strong and one weak writer--were observed during four conferences with their teacher. The topic of conversation was the basic unit of analysis. The number of times a topic was mentioned did not necessarily correspond to the proportion of the conference time devoted to the topic. The weak writer showed a preoccupation with mechanical errors, and the teacher worked to keep the focus off mechanics by trying to shorten the discussion of the issue each time the student brought it up. It was only by admitting the validity of the student's concern and suggesting a strategy for handling that concern that the teacher could finally focus on idea development. The stronger writer was concerned with generating ideas, while the teacher was concerned with organization. These two students had individual concerns while the teacher had similar but not identical concerns for each student. The teacher was able to converse with the stronger writer about shared concerns much earlier in the semester than with the weaker writer, indicating that shared concerns are at the base of effective teaching and learning. (HTH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Teacher Student Conferences
Note: Paper presented at the Austin Conference on Research in Writing (Austin, TX, March 1981).