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ERIC Number: ED354534
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992-Nov-23
Pages: 7
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Right To Write: Some History.
Lloyd-Jones, Richard
A document prepared by the Commission on Composition in the early 1970s, "The Student's Right to Write," has some usefulness for contemporary practitioners of writing instruction. The report reflects the strong initiative arising in the '70s to rethink the beliefs and practices then prevalent in the field of English teaching. At the time, the profession was being shaken up by new models and challenges to the traditional study of language and linguistics. In response to these trends, the National Council for the Teaching of English created the Commission to suggest how the profession needed to react to the emerging changes in the field of composition. The Commission initially mobilized itself to fight the inept scoring procedure used to measure composition achievement by the first National Assessment of Educational Progress. At meetings held to examine the existing methodology and to review the assessment exercises, Commission members challenged both the exercises and the scoring methods, and from that challenge came a contract that resulted in the design of a new method of assessment called "Primary Trait Scoring". The next focus of the Commission was to promulgate what was newly understood about the teaching of writing. In the beginning participation was meager, there was disagreement among members, and attempts at an orderly exposition of the field were unfocused. In hopes of discovering some common ground members assigned themselves a batch of short essays about issues worthy of concern, and it was as a result of this effort that 10 of the seminal group's first essays were collected and published as "The Student's Right to Write." From the contemporary viewpoint, some common themes can be identified, which include the importance of stimulating the imagination, fostering student self-esteem, and seeing the study of language as entangled with the study of society. An opinionnaire was created to determine feedback from practicing teachers. As an indication of the interests and concerns of a newly emergent field of study, "The Student's Right to Write" was a prophetic look ahead. (HB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Historical Materials
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A