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ERIC Number: ED361042
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993
Pages: 13
Abstractor: N/A
Stories Told in a Different Voice: Women Students as Developing Writers.
Nugent, Susan Monroe
Many women in two-year colleges are returning to education after having been away from a school setting for an extended period of time. In a community college writing class, written comments to a teacher on the first day of class indicated that women were considerably less self-confident than the men, with several revealing fear of expressing themselves in public. According to Belenky, Clinchy, Goldberger, and Tarule, women have five basic ways of knowing: Silence, Received Knowledge, Subjective Knowledge, Procedural Knowledge, and Constructed Knowledge. Instructors can develop a framework for tracing the growth of women students in class based on these levels of knowing. A woman in silence fears the consequences of her words, thus says nothing. Students in the received knowledge stage have not developed a voice of their own, and want the authority (the teacher or text) to provide them with "the answer." In research papers, these women tend to tie together a string of quotes. Women in the subjective knowledge stage tend to reject or support what authorities say based upon their experiences, are often angry at authorities, and tend toward global generalizations. Women in the procedural knowledge stage recognize the need to learn procedures for developing their understanding of a subject. In the constructed knowledge stage, women synthesize their knowledge and experiences using appropriate procedures, often transferring classroom learning to their own lives. In writing classes, women's written work over the course of a semester can show evidence of the slow process of moving from stage to stage. Instructors can further the process by requiring students to think and write about what they have learned and incorporate conferences on students' writing into class time. By helping students monitor their own growth and learning, teachers encourage students to take control of learning and value their voices. (PAA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A