STUDENT WRITING
IN GEOSCIENCE
COURSES
Elizabeth Catlos,
University of Texas
Austin
Rachel Beane, Bowdoin
College
On the Cu...
SESSION OUTLINE
Why include writing
Example assignments
Problems
Offering instruction and guidance to students
Group work:...
WHY INCLUDE WRITING
IN YOUR COURSE?
Benefits students
Important training
Commonly done for the class
Required for curricul...
EXAMPLES OF WRITING
ASSIGNMENTS
Wikipedia mineral assignment
 Students create an entry for a mineral that is missing
Rock...
WHAT ARE PROBLEMS YOU
HAVE SEEN IN STUDENT
WRITING?
References
 How to cite a reference in correct format in the body of ...
GUIDING STUDENT
WRITING
Goal: For students to use reader expectations and
context to improve writing.
Read: Gopen, G.D. an...
GUIDING STUDENT
WRITING
Present: Share geological examples for main points of article.
 Follow a grammatical subject as s...
REVIEWING AND
REVISING WRITING
Professor comments
Individual meetings
Writing Centers
Reflection
Peer review
REFLECTION
Goal: For students to consider strengths and areas for
improvement in their own writing.
First day of class: Wh...
PEER REVIEW
APPROACHES
In class with groups of 3-5 students
Out of class with students trading papers
Graded?
Anonymous?
C...
PEER REVIEW – EXAMPLE
INSTRUCTIONS
6. Does the organization of
the paper follow from the
thesis?
7. As a reader, were you
...
PEER REVIEW – EXAMPLE
INSTRUCTIONS
1. Writing
2. References
3. Tables and figures
4. Abstract
5. Format
6. Content
7. Leng...
GRADING AND
RESPONDING TO WRITING
Written comments
GRADING AND
RESPONDING TO WRITING
Grading by video
 Faster, more effective
 Detailed comments and suggestions
 Friendly...
CONSIDER WRITING IN
YOUR COURSE
What is the writing goal?
What will the assignment be?
How will you offer instruction/guid...
REFERENCES
Bates, R. L., Adkins-Heljeson, M. D., and Buchanan, R.C., editors, 2004. Geowriting: A Guide
to Writing, Editin...
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  • RB – 5’
  • RB – 5’
  • RB - 5’
  • RB & EC 5’
  • RB – 3’
  • EC
  • EC
  • EC - 15’ small groups work on assignment together at table, may need to continue outside of this session
  • Transcript of "Student Writing in Geoscience Courses_MON_100_beane"

    1. 1. STUDENT WRITING IN GEOSCIENCE COURSES Elizabeth Catlos, University of Texas Austin Rachel Beane, Bowdoin College On the Cutting Edge Early Career Workshop 2013
    2. 2. SESSION OUTLINE Why include writing Example assignments Problems Offering instruction and guidance to students Group work: consider your courses
    3. 3. WHY INCLUDE WRITING IN YOUR COURSE? Benefits students Important training Commonly done for the class Required for curriculum ?
    4. 4. EXAMPLES OF WRITING ASSIGNMENTS Wikipedia mineral assignment  Students create an entry for a mineral that is missing Rocks and water of the Middle East  End-of-semester term paper for freshman students Your examples?
    5. 5. WHAT ARE PROBLEMS YOU HAVE SEEN IN STUDENT WRITING? References  How to cite a reference in correct format in the body of the paper  When to cite a reference  Plagiarism When to make a new paragraph Citing and using figures and tables English as a second language Your examples?
    6. 6. GUIDING STUDENT WRITING Goal: For students to use reader expectations and context to improve writing. Read: Gopen, G.D. and Swan, J.A., 1990. The science of scientific writing. American Scientist, Volume 78, p. 550- 558.
    7. 7. GUIDING STUDENT WRITING Present: Share geological examples for main points of article.  Follow a grammatical subject as soon as possible with its verb.  Place in the stress position the “new information” you want the reader to emphasize.  Place the person or thing whose “story” a sentence is telling at the beginning of the sentence, in the topic position.  Place appropriate “old information” (material already stated in the discourse) in the topic position for linkage backward and contextualization forward.  Articulate the action of every clause or sentence in its verb.  In general, provide context for your reader before asking that the reader consider anything new.  In general, try to ensure that the relative emphases of the substance coincide with the relative expectations for emphasis raised by the structure. Assess: Comment on lab reports, include in grading rubric for projects
    8. 8. REVIEWING AND REVISING WRITING Professor comments Individual meetings Writing Centers Reflection Peer review
    9. 9. REFLECTION Goal: For students to consider strengths and areas for improvement in their own writing. First day of class: What are your strengths as a writer? What would you like to improve in your writing? After one or more of the projects: If you had one more hour (or day) how would you improve your paper? End of class: How has your writing improved during this course? What do you want to continue to improve in your writing?
    10. 10. PEER REVIEW APPROACHES In class with groups of 3-5 students Out of class with students trading papers Graded? Anonymous? Calibrated peer review Student guidelines for review Students address the comments Bowdoin students at the writing center
    11. 11. PEER REVIEW – EXAMPLE INSTRUCTIONS 6. Does the organization of the paper follow from the thesis? 7. As a reader, were you confused at any point? 8. Do you have any suggestions to improve the writing or structure? 9. How compelling is the evidence the writer presents? 1. Does the paper follow the assignment? 2. Can you state the thesis? 3. What could the writer do to improve transitions between thoughts, sentences, para graphs? 4. Are there places the writing could be more concise? 5. What grammatical, tense, spellin g or punctuation errors are in the paper? General questions Most time on these Qs
    12. 12. PEER REVIEW – EXAMPLE INSTRUCTIONS 1. Writing 2. References 3. Tables and figures 4. Abstract 5. Format 6. Content 7. Length 8. Comment on the writer’s “role” 9. Intellectual content UT Austin Undergraduate Writing Center
    13. 13. GRADING AND RESPONDING TO WRITING Written comments
    14. 14. GRADING AND RESPONDING TO WRITING Grading by video  Faster, more effective  Detailed comments and suggestions  Friendly tone that students can hear  Students anticipate comments and listen/watch the video  Screen cast/screenshot software http://www.techsmith.com/jing.html *Idea shared by Tom Hickson, University of St. Thomas
    15. 15. CONSIDER WRITING IN YOUR COURSE What is the writing goal? What will the assignment be? How will you offer instruction/guidance prior to the assignment? How will students get feedback?
    16. 16. REFERENCES Bates, R. L., Adkins-Heljeson, M. D., and Buchanan, R.C., editors, 2004. Geowriting: A Guide to Writing, Editing, and Printing in Earth Science, Fifth Revised Edition. American Geological Institute, 100pp. Bean, J.C. 2011. Engaging Ideas: The Professor's Guide to Integrating Writing, Critical Thinking, and Active Learning in the Classroom. Jossey-Bass, 384pp. Brohaugh, William (2002) Write Tight: How to Keep Your Prose Sharp, Focused and Concise. Intercollegiate Studies Institute, ISBN-10: 1882926889, ISBN-13: 978-1882926886. Carnegie Mellon, Eberly Center, Responding to Student Writing www.cmu.edu/teaching/designteach/design/instructionalstrategies/writing/respond.html Gopen, G.D., Swan, J.A., 1990. The science of scientific writing. American Scientist, 78, 550- 558. Gopen, G.D., 2004. Expectations: Teaching writing from the readers perspective. Pearson, 395 pp. Irvine, T.N. and Rumble, D., III, 1992. A writing guide for petrological (and other geological) manuscripts. Journal of Petrology, 46pp. Swan, J., 2013. In praise of technique. TEDxCMU http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1pzjxYCwb08
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