ERIC Number: ED254145
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Oct-15
Reference Count: 0
Development in College: Perspectives, Processes, and Reflections on the Role of Writing.
The link between writing and the development of reasoning abilities, and implications for the college curriculum are discussed. The developmental models/theories of Piaget, Kohlberg, Gilligan, and Perry are described. Perry identifies a level of cognitive development called "dualism," which is a tendency to view the world in absolute, binary terms. Through interviewing students at the end of their freshman year, Perry determined that few were dualistic, although many of the students described themselves as dualistic before college. The "optimal match" hypothesis suggests that instruction that challenges the students' current thinking structures will have the greatest impact on motivation and learning. Specifically, the optimal level of challenge is one "stage" or position above the students' present level. In Perry's model, this would mean helping the dualistic student understand and accept the possibility of multiple frames of reference. Initially this might be accomplished by asking students to rewrite an essay for several different audiences; later they can be assigned exercises requiring reading or listening to, and then summarizing a variety of opinions on a topic. Journal writing would provide a complementary outlet for students' emotional responses to course material and its intellectual demands. (SW)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Perry Developmental Scheme
Note: Paper presented at a Meeting of the Northern Rocky Mountain Educational Research Association (October 15, 1983).