NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ998654
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 20
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 30
ISSN: ISSN-0889-6143
Listening to Revise: What a Study about Text-to-Speech Software Taught Us about Students' Expectations for Technology Use in the Writing Center
Conard-Salvo, Tammy; Spartz, John M.
Writing Center Journal, v32 n2 p40-59 2012
This is a story of a failed study. In 2007, the authors set out to demonstrate that Kurzweil 3000, an adaptive text-to-speech software program, would help any student revise with its read-aloud function and numerous writing tools. During the course of the study, the authors confronted their misconceptions about students' technology use and realized that they could not definitively support their original hypothesis that Kurzweil could help students substantially revise their writing--despite the potential that still exists for technology like Kurzweil to be successfully used in writing centers. Participants' focus group responses, which provided considerable and interesting details about their use of Kurzweil, led the authors to an important discovery: they learned that students value tutors' advice during writing center sessions, particularly when tutors introduce new ways to revise, but tutors need additional support, training, and confidence to introduce these technological tools and strategies to students. Thus, in order for students to use technology like Kurzweil in meaningful and productive ways, well-trained tutors need to incorporate this technology into tutorial sessions and model how to use its features effectively. By reporting on a failed study, the authors reinforce the value of empirical work in writing centers, especially because their own student-users have taught them how to better use, incorporate, and plan technology use. (Contains 3 notes.)
Writing Center Journal. 011 Memorial Hall University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19718. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana