Re: Freewriting

Jeffrey R Galin (galin+@PITT.EDU)
Tue, 23 Jul 1996 12:25:51 -0400

No doubt such a study would be interesting and revealing of this
community of writers. I think we could all benefit from seriously
concidering what we do when we write. In past years, I have joined my
students in an exercise of describing in detail how our writing processes
work and sharing these with each other to come up with a class-wide
process model. I am certain that this excercise helped a few of my
students, though I am unsure whether the process models themselves were
useful to any individual students in the class.
Extending this excercise a wide audience of experts, who value
different kinds of products, for different kinds of institutional demands
in search of some form of larger process model does not appeal to me per
se. It is the process of doing the analysis that offers the most
potential. I'd wager that the "artifacts" that teachers hold in their
minds as they grade student papers, webs, or journals differs far more
than even this small group of teachers would like to admit.
Sounds like fun no matter the results. Go for it.
\ Jeffrey R. Galin
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On Tue, 23 Jul 1996, Beth W. Baldwin, PhD wrote:

> On Tue, 23 Jul 1996, Jeffrey R Galin wrote:
> > I think we need to think a great deal more before we start
> > comparing the processes of experts to the processes of novice learners.
> I would hope that such a study would prompt exactly what you suggest: a
> great deal more thinking. I'm more interested in what we, as teachers,
> could learn about what we do in the writing classroom as far as our
> material practices go. Maybe if the writing process is so variable for
> individuals across the full spectrum of novice learner to expert, chosing
> to focus on a writing process that leads invariably to the same kind of
> communicative "artifact" (essay) is something that bears more thinking.
> In other words, there are deeper issues at hand than what means best lead
> to the same end. There are many things we could learn from such a study
> -- *new* contributions we could make to the field, not just a rehashing of
> what's been studied before.
> Beth
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