ERIC Number: ED240581
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: 0
Audience, Purpose, and Persona in Student Writing.
Morrissey, Thomas J.
In the "real" world of writing, people make writing decisions based in part on their analyses of audience expectations and their own purposes. Yet, composition teachers at all levels assign general or abstract topics for essays rather than create writing tasks that require students to reflect on target audiences. Even students are aware of the kinds of audiences and purposes they are likely to encounter beyond the classroom: the audience, purpose, and persona are essential parts of any writing task. Although many traditional textbooks offer little guidance to students or teachers as to how these elements figure within the writing process, a number of new books view the problem as central, including "Successful Writing" by Maxine Hairston and "Writing to Communicate" by Maureen Taylor. It is possible to create classroom writing tasks that force students to consider audience, purpose, and persona. However, helping students learn to invent and intervening in their writing process to promote invention and development are also part of teaching audience awareness. (A sample assignment that allows students to choose from lists of topics or purposes and audiences is included.) (HTH)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Audience Awareness; Persona
Note: This paper is based on a workshop conducted at the Current Trends in Reading Conference (4th, Plattsburgh, NY, October 17, 1983).