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To Revise and Improve Writing . Using Gen Ed Assessment to Inform and Influence Teaching. Guiding Questions. How do you teach revision? What do we learn about revision from the direct assessment of student writing? How might you restructure your revision pedagogy?.

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to revise and improve writing

To Revise and Improve Writing

Using Gen Ed Assessment to Inform and Influence Teaching

David S. Martins, Ph.D.

guiding questions
Guiding Questions
  • How do you teach revision?
  • What do we learn about revision from the direct assessment of student writing?
  • How might you restructure your revision pedagogy?

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

how do you teach revision
How do you teach revision?

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

revision activities
Revision Activities
  • In-class Peer Review
  • Take-home Peer Review
  • In-class Analysis of Peer Reviews
  • Instructor feedback
  • Revision Plans
  • Teacher-Student Conference
  • In-class Discussion of Evaluation Criteria/Rubric
  • In-class Workshop on Student Writing
  • In-class Modeling of Revision
  • In-class Sentence or Passage Revision (Using Computer)
  • “Self-Assessment” Questionnaire
  • Reflective Essay
  • “Track Changes” Draft
  • Writing Center visit

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

what do we learn about revision from the direct assessment of student writing
What do we learn about revision from the direct assessment of student writing?

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

method
Method

Portfolio Collection

Scoring Guide

Communication Team – Revision Types

Lit Review – Feedback Types

Program Faculty – Revision Activities

Pilot Workshops – Test Scoring Guide

  • Basic Writing, Writing Seminar (incl. CLA &NTID), Honors Seminar
  • Fall and Winter
  • N=174 (11.6%)
  • Drafts of “Documented Research Essay”

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

s coring guide
Scoring Guide
  • Portfolio #: 20091/20092-RA-
  • Please indicate which of the following documents are contained in the portfolio
  • Comparing the three drafts included in the portfolio, what revisions do you see the student completing or attempting to complete while preparing the final draft:
  • Which of these revisions improved the essay the most?
  • Where were the completed revisions targeted?
  • Considering the feedback received, what revisions did the peers/instructor believe were necessary to improve the draft?

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

scoring guide cont
Scoring Guide (cont.)
  • Who seemed to provide comments that lead to the most significant revision?
  • Considering all of the feedback received, what kinds of comments seemed to lead to the most significant improvements to the essay? (Check no more than three.)
  • Considering the revisions made and the feedback offered, where was the most generative feedback located?
  • Evaluation of revision and final draft

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

revision types
Revision Types
  • Source Information
  • Complexity and Audience Awareness
  • Organization
  • Editing & Stylistics

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

source information
Source Information
  • Source information has been added, removed, or modified to support claims/thesis
  • Sources are more fully integrated into the essay (e.g., through signal phrases, inter-textual references, etc.)

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

complexity audience awareness
Complexity &Audience Awareness
  • Focus of essay has been changed, narrowed, or expanded (e.g., through changes in word choice, organization, and/or use of sources)
  • Multiple or alternative perspectives are considered showing increased complexity of thought and audience awareness
  • Implications and/or questions are articulated showing increased complexity of thought and audience awareness

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

organization
Organization
  • Transitional words of phrases, between and within paragraphs, have been added or modified to improve coherence and flow
  • Paragraphs have been added, removed, or moved to demonstrate intentional organizational structure

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

editing stylistics
Editing &Stylistics
  • Copyediting has reduced distracting errors in spelling, punctuation, grammar, and format
  • Sentence-level changes in word choice, word order, and redundancy make essay clearer and more concrete

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

most frequent revisions
Most Frequent Revisions

Overall, the most frequent types of revision observed in the portfolios addressed changes that preserved, rather than changed the meaning of the text:

  • Source information added, removed, or modified (68%)
  • Copyediting that reduced distracting errors (67%)
  • Sentence-level changes in word choice, word order, and redundancy (55%).
  • Paragraphs added, removed, or moved (55%).

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

complexity
“Complexity”

The issue of complexity, presumably the most difficult area to address in revision, accounted for the two least frequent types of revision observed:

  • Implications and/or questions articulated (26%)
  • Multiple or alternative perspectives are considered (30%).

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

revision trends and grades
Revision Trends and Grades
  • The greater variety of revision types = higher grades.
  • In A/B portfolios and A essays, the two most successful revisions were:
  • the articulation of implications or questions (.89), and
  • the consideration of multiple or alternative perspectives (.79).
  • Those same two revisions were seen in 0% and 13% of the portfolios with D/F essay.

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

peer feedback revision location
Peer Feedback & Revision Location
  • 92% of student respondents report peer response experiences in their classes, and 100% of faculty reported assigning peer response.
  • Instructor feedback was seen as leading to more significant revision (67%) compared to that of peers (9%).
  • Revisions occurred only where comments were written locally on the page in 60% of portfolios

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

discussion

Benchmarks Established

  • 70% revise source information to support claims or thesis.
  • 70% revise to address errors in editing and mechanics.
  • 55% revise organizational structure.
  • 30% revise to show increased complexity of thought and audience awareness.
Discussion

Program-Based Impact

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

discussion1

How do these findings influence how might you restructure your revision pedagogy (e.g., class activities, assignment sequences, readings, peer response)?

Discussion

Class-BasedImpact

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

think back to your most successful assessment experience
Think back to your most successful assessment experience…

How did you make the assessment useful?

David S. Martins - FITL 2011

key references
Key References
  • Dave, Anish M. and David R. Russell. “Drafting and Revision Using Word Processing by Undergraduate Student Writers: Changing Conceptions and Practices” Research in the Teaching of Writing 44. 4 (2010), 406-434.
  • Faigley, Lester and Stephen Witte. “Analyzing Revision” CCC 32.4 (1981), 400-414.
  • Horning, Alice and Anne Becker. Eds. Revision: History, Theory, Practice. West Lafayette, IN: Parlor Press (2006).
  • Huot, Brian. “Toward a New Discourse of Writing Assessment for the College Writing Classroom.” College English 65 (2002): 163-180.
  • Sommers, Nancy. “Revision Strategies of Student Writers and Experienced Adult Writers.” CCC 31.4 (1980), 378-88.
  • Straub, Richard. “The Concept of Control in Teacher Response: Defining the Varieties of ‘Directive’ and ‘Facilitative’ Commentary. CCC 47(1996), 223-251.

David S. Martins - FITL 2011