ERIC Number: ED395948
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
A Comparative Analysis of Writing Features Used by Selected Black and White Students in the National Assessment of Educational Progress and the New Jersey High School Proficiency Test.
Chaplin, Miriam T.
A study was conducted to identify and analyze the writing strategies of eighth- and ninth-grade black and white students on the 1983-84 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). Black students, who were from an urban area in New Jersey, had also taken the New Jersey High School Proficiency Test (NJHSPT). Following an initial study that examined test booklets, some completed by students known to be black, a classification scheme was developed to identify and analyze features in the students' essays. Classification techniques were refined through successive samples of NAEP and NJHSPT essays, for a total of 375. Data were analyzed across four modes of writing: imaginative, informative, persuasive, and narrative. There were differences between essays written by black and white students, but the differences were more quantitative than qualitative. Both groups used most of the same features, but fewer black students than white students used the features effectively. For black students in particular, the imaginative and narrative essays drew more enthusiastic responses and were written in a more engaging manner than the informative and persuasive essays. They were more likely to show enthusiasm for writing, but at the same time, they were more likely to reveal students' deficiencies in writing skills. Appendix A gives examples of black vernacular, and Appendix B presents two tables of correlations among factors used by white and black students. (Contains 3 figures, 8 tables, and 18 references.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Black Students, Classification, Comparative Analysis, Grade 8, Grade 9, High School Students, Imagination, Junior High School Students, Narration, National Surveys, Persuasive Discourse, Racial Differences, Secondary Education, Student Attitudes, Urban Schools, White Students, Writing Achievement, Writing (Composition), Writing Evaluation
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ.
Identifiers: National Assessment of Educational Progress; New Jersey High School Proficiency Test