ERIC Number: ED271030
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Teaching Writing: What We Know and What We Do.
Recent research on writing that sheds light on writing instruction in English as a second language (ESL) focuses on contrastive rhetoric (the interference of first language rhetoric experienced by the second language learner), patterns of development in English scientific texts that cause problems for second language readers, the contrastive use of other text features, and error patterns. As the focus in writing instruction turned from product to process, the emphasis has turned away from the teaching of grammar and prescribed patterns of organization. This has been interpreted by some as a shift away from rigor and as a split between form and content and between grammatical accuracy and fluency. The two approaches, however, can be reconciled. A review of 10 recent ESL writing textbooks reveals no real change in approach. Rather, there is a continued traditional emphasis on prescribed form, enhanced by a few prewriting strategies and group activities intended to focus on process. This survey makes clear that current theory about writing instruction has not been fully translated into practice. Writing teachers would find it helpful to have a comprehensive theory of the acquisition of writing ability and instructional materials that attend to concerns about product in the context of a process approach to writing. Some indications on a textbook analysis are appended. Included are the features examined and bibliographic information on the textbooks. (MSE)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Teachers
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (20th, Anaheim, CA, March 3-8, 1986).