One-paragraph revision

One-paragraph revision

Shared by Elizabeth Baldridge

This activity is a follow-up to paper feedback, designed to ensure students understand instructor commentary and to encourage further revision.



Filed under Assignments

2 responses to “One-paragraph revision

  1. Mary Wendt

    I have a question: how would you suggest approaching this activity when their most egregious revision issues are more holistic or content-oriented? For example, what would you do if they needed to have a stronger argument? Or what if their order of ideas needs rearranging? I really like this idea, but it feels like it would be a good exercise for paragraphing skills but not necessarily for deeper content issues.

    • EB

      Mary — I can see that. I use it for those “deeper” issues. In fact, because of where we usually are when this task comes around, it’s probably primarily for those deeper issues. I also use it on multimodal assignments that don’t actually include formal paragraphs. The idea each time is to do just a bit of work–enough to make sure my ideas are being communicated and the student knows what to do with them.

      So, going with your examples, for the stronger argument, I would pinpoint first what seems to be the issue in the writing: is it inadequate evidence, lack of specificity, too little analysis and discussion? Then I’d highlight a spot that is a solid example of that kind of issue, and my comment would talk students through why that’s a shortcoming and offer a couple of different strategies to tackle it. The one-paragraph revision would have them working on just that issue in just one paragraph with the idea that they’d be doing the same kind of work to the whole paper (assuming that first go at revision was a success).

      I think the larger organizational issues are probably addressed in a lot of my scaffolding assignments during the writing process, but I can still imagine this small, focused revision working in a different class situation. I might, for instance, ask students to reverse outline their papers (as a sort of before) and then propose a different method of organization for the after.

      So really, it’s not a one-paragraph revision every time. We bend that depending on the issues and the type of assignment.

      Does that make sense?

      What things are you doing to encourage that deeper revision? I’d love to see!

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