ERIC Number: ED214202
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Weaving the Web of Meaning: Interaction Patterns in Peer-Response Groups.
Data on students participating in six peer-response groups in a college writing workshop revealed the role of student writers in weaving the web of critical response during the peer group discussion. Analysis showed that the student writers engaged in four main types of verbal activity concerning their papers: (1) asking questions about their essays, including general requests for criticism, requests for recommendations on specific passages, and questions about group members' suggestions and comments; (2) proposing their own suggestions for revising their work; (3) expressing agreement or disagreement with the recommendations of their peers; and (4) explaining the intentions behind their stylistic choices. These results bore testimony not only to the value of the peer-response experience but also to the limitations frequently associated with this approach. For example, writers are not sure of their role in the peer-response process, whether to sit and listen or to constantly interrupt others and defend themselves. Writers also have difficulty in detaching or distancing themselves from their writing. These limitations indicate that composition teachers need to instruct students as to the nature and purpose of criticism and the dynamics of peer feedback in the workshop discussion approach. Teachers should also provide clear, explicit directions for the critiquing process and institute procedures for collecting data on group responses over several sessions. (RL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Writing Workshops
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (33rd, San Francisco, CA, March 18-20, 1982).