ERIC Number: EJ1003159
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Nov
Reference Count: 2
Professional Writing in the English Classroom: Let's Get Real--Using Usability to Connect Writers, Readers, and Texts
Bush, Jonathan, Ed.; Zuidema, Leah, Ed.
English Journal, v102 n2 p138-141 Nov 2012
In professional writing, usability testing investigates how well users can find, understand, and use a document (Lannon). Usability testing involves gathering feedback from users, analyzing how successfully they used the document, and drawing on the test results to change or refine the design. From the authors' experiences as writers and teachers, they know the power of usability and user-centered design. Usability testing allows students to engage with a real audience. Not only do they envision this audience by writing a detailed persona, but they also meet them and engage in an iterative process with them, often learning about their misconceptions and stereotypes and gaining new insights about the audience. Usability testing also gives students direct and unvarnished feedback on their writing. Along the way, students move from thinking of their audience as a nebulous concept toward knowing readers as real people--and they understand more fully that writing is an act with real consequences.
Descriptors: Feedback (Response), Usability, Test Results, Audience Analysis, Audience Awareness, Educational Strategies, Learning Strategies, Writing Strategies, Revision (Written Composition), Classroom Techniques, Teaching Methods
National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site: http://www.ncte.org/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A