ERIC Number: ED390460
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Feb
Writing (and Talking) To Learn: Integrating Disciplinary Content and Skills Development.
McCabe, Don F.
Writing and discussion are excellent ways for students to master content, develop analytical abilities, and become active and collaborative learners. The Writing Across the Curriculum movement offers a theoretical framework for the use of writing in instruction, maintaining that writing skills are primarily thinking skills, that writing is a dialectical process of developing an understanding of something, and that higher order thinking skills can only evolve through a writing process in which the writer engages in an active, on-going dialogue with him- or herself and others. Research on the use of discussion or peer review groups in instruction indicates that the interaction they provide helps students develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills and improves motivation. Many faculty, however, are either unaware of these movements or actively resist them, with some English faculty worried that non-expert teachers will be engaging in writing instruction and other teachers concerned over giving up course time to include writing assignments. Teachers do not have to be grammarians, however, to offer guidance with writing and writing exercises can be effective methods of transmitting course content. In political science courses at Southern Illinois University, several assignments have been developed incorporating writing and discussion. In introductory courses, students are asked to read pro and con arguments regarding an issue and write an argumentative essay for one side. In higher-level courses, students prepare cases analyses related to seven broad topics. Contains 38 references. (TGI)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: Proceedings of the National Conference on Successful College Teaching (18th, Orlando, Florida, February 26-28, 1994); see JC 960 033.