ERIC Number: ED424576
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
And the Survey Says: How Students Assess the Value of Freshman-Writing Programs.
Mercier, Judith D.; Mercier, Peter J.
The purpose of this study is to determine whether college juniors and seniors view their freshman-writing instruction as beneficial and to assess its impact on the writing they do within their specific disciplines. Although a great deal of theory surrounds the teaching of freshman writing, very little research has been done to assess its effectiveness from the students' point of view once they start writing within their disciplines. The present research, utilizing a survey which was administered to a sample of 297 juniors and seniors at three colleges/universities in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, primarily address the following questions: (1) How do students assess the value of their freshman-writing instruction?; (2) How does a non-discipline-specific freshman-writing curriculum impact discipline-specific writing challenges?; and (3) Is the writing in a student's chosen discipline more valuable to her than the instruction and practice she found in her freshman-writing program? Results indicate that students' perceptions about the value of freshman writing vary according to their majors. Findings suggest that students in the humanities and social sciences rated the writing they do in their disciplines as being more valuable than that which they did in their freshman writing classes, and students in business, engineering, and technology thought the reverse. (Contains 7 tables of data and a sample 11-page student questionnaire.) (Author/CR)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (49th, Chicago, IL, April 1-4, 1998).