ERIC Number: ED332195
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Writing Tasks and the Quality of Student Writing: Evidence from a Statewide Assessment of Writing.
Engelhard, George, Jr.; And Others
A study examined the influence of mode of discourse, experiential demand and gender on quality of student writing. All of the eighth-grade students (125,756) who participated in a statewide assessment of writing during spring 1989 and spring 1990 were included in the study. Eighteen writing tasks were administered during these two years. The writing tasks were classified in terms of mode of discourse (narrative, descriptive, and expository) and also in terms of experiential demand (direct experience, imagined experience, and outside knowledge). A multivariate analysis of variance was conducted with five dependent variables used to assess writing quality (content/organization, style, sentence formation, usage, and mechanics) and three independent variables (mode of discourse x experiential demand x gender). Results indicated that mode of discourse, experiential demand, and gender were significant predictors of writing quality. The quality of writing was more highly rated for females than for males with effect sizes ranging from .33 for content/organization to .49 for mechanics. (Six tables of data and one figure are included and 27 references are attached. One appendix includes the rhetorical specifications for the writing tasks.) (Author/MG)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Childrens Writing
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (72nd, Chicago, IL, April 3-7, 1991).