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ERIC Number: EJ914403
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 24
ISSN: ISSN-0034-0561
What Makes Writing Good? An Essential Question for Teachers
Nauman, April D.; Stirling, Terry; Borthwick, Arlene
Reading Teacher, v64 n5 p318-328 Feb 2011
The question of what makes writing "good" touches several important areas of classroom writing instruction: assessment and evaluation, instruction, and teacher response during one-on-one conferences. The current paper examines contemporary views of what makes writing "good," along with the classroom implications and limitations of these views. In addition, a research study investigating different perspectives on what makes writing "good" is reported. The study included 60 classroom teachers from urban high-needs schools as well as suburban schools, preservice teachers, and professional writers. A Q methodological analysis identified three perspectives. Participants expressing perspective 1 defined good writing as good thinking and communication. In Perspective 2, structure and clarity were considered most essential to good writing. In Perspective 3, purpose, voice, and conventions were emphasized. Participants' views differed greatly on the need for predictable organization in writing, the value of surprise, and the necessity of correct conventions. Classroom implications are discussed. (Contains 1 figure and 5 tables.)
International Reading Association. 800 Barksdale Road, P.O. Box 8139, Newark, DE 19714-8139. Tel: 800-336-7323; Fax: 302-731-1057; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Illinois