ERIC Number: ED373326
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Mar-19
Reference Count: N/A
Where's the Essay?
The degree to which process writing deconstructs traditional notions about a fixed final product came to the attention of a high school instructor and her students when they attempted to select their best "essays" for a contest the school was holding. The students in this class found that some of their best writing occurred not in their "final essays" but in the descriptive pieces they wrote about those "final essays"; or rather, no single piece of writing represented the culmination of their work. For them, the process of learning and discovery was continual, not complete as of the paper's due date. One student who had waited over 20 years to go to college, for instance, continued to revise her view of why she did not go to college when she was younger. Other students found that through a dialogue with each other on the computer screen they were forced to confront the opposition's evidence; as a consequence their own views changed radically. Dialogues of this sort along with small group work and various exercises that emphasize writing processes help students to take responsibility for their own learning and development. Collage essays, essays that ask students to piece together bits of their writing completed over the semester, offer a further means of allowing students to reflect on their own development. (Includes two figures, an example of a collage essay and a cartoon.) (TB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Writing Development
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (45th, Nashville, TN, March 16-19, 1994).