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Theme: Transition and Adjustment

Transition and text:
a progress report of a web-based writing resource project

Tim Moore, Rosemary Clerehan, Glenda Crosling, Steve Price, Harriet Searcy,
Jillian Turnbull, Sheila Vance
Language and Learning Services
Monash University

A key element of the transition process for students commencing university study is adapting to new types of writing and researching (Candlin et al. 1998). In relation to academic transition, it is useful to think of two dimensions. The first is clearly a vertical transition from school to the academy (where students are likely to find that writing requirements are somewhat more demanding). The second may be characterised as a lateral transition from one discipline specialism to the next (where students find themselves having to operate in a variety of discursive modes).

In this paper, we discuss the development of a web-based writing resource aimed at helping students to negotiate these transitions. The resource seeks to characterise writing practices in a range of disciplines (economics, education, history, law, literature, marketing, management, philosophy, sociology) by drawing on samples of students' work, as well as students' narrated accounts of the writing and research processes they have been engaged in. Comparison will be made with Year 12 writing. This paper will also highlight a number of pedagogical issues that have had to be considered in the early stages of the project, viz; how individual students' experiences can serve as exemplars for others; how specific writing contexts can be generalised and how writing pedagogies can be adapted to the web environment

Full Paper in MS Word

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