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ERIC Number: EJ931770
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jul
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-0013-8274
Professional Writing in the English Classroom: Good Writing--The Problem of Ethics
Zuidema, Leah A.; Bush, Jonathan
English Journal, v100 n6 p95-98 Jul 2011
In this article, the authors focus on the decision-making process that goes into professional writing and ways to emphasize ethical decision-making in writing classrooms. Professional writing has at its core an emphasis on action and audience. Certainly teachers want their students to write effectively--to serve their clients, organizations, and corporations well. However, they also maintain that professional writers have an obligation to act ethically and make responsible rhetorical choices. How do they translate these concepts to their students? Ethical principles won't become "real" for student writers unless they are faced with practical, concrete situations. To be truly curious about ethics, students need to face problems that are not easily solved; they need to be puzzled--to face what they might call ethical dilemmas. A "case" (what some might call a "scenario") is a structured writing situation in which students take on the role of author/professional. Good cases pose problems similar to those that professionals face in the "real world." Effective cases are full of gray areas--and room for discussion, debate, and decision-making. When cases are used in conjunction with writing assignments, they highlight the ethical complexities of genres that might otherwise appear simple, even formulaic. (Contains 1 figure.)
National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A