Three Methods for Teaching and Evaluating Writing
A study was conducted to determine whether or not there were significant differences in student performance based on three methods of teaching and evaluating writing. These methods are faculty review, group review, and Calibrated Peer Review (CPR) via an internet software program, which were randomly assigned to classes whose students were given pretests, treatments and posttests involving four different situations, i.e., direct request, goodwill, negative, and persuasive.
Under the faculty review method, thorough and precise comments proved useful for pointing out specific problems, explaining them and making suggestions for their resolution (Plutsky & Wilson, 2004).
However, this may entail a lot of time, so some faculty opt to use peer review instead. Peer reviews conducted with students writing in collaboration with each other tended to enhance students’ writing skills and ability for critical thinking (Plutsky & Wilson, 2004). The subjectivity of individual opinions can be tapered or even eliminated by imposing guidelines and criteria to establish uniformity and reliability.
The specific methodology described above was used on a group of students of the subject Analysis of Communication for Business, which produced varying results. Under the faculty review method, students scored higher on all four situations (Plutsky & Wilson, 2004), perhaps because the students treated the work more seriously because it was assigned by a teacher. Students under the group review method got higher marks than those under CPR, except with respect to the goodwill message (Plutsky & Wilson, 2004), probably because students had no opportunity for discussion under the latter and thus had their own understanding of the issues involved.
In general, however, while results varied in certain respects, they showed that any of the three methods would be effective in teaching students writing proficiency.
Plutsky, S., and Wilson, B.A. (2004). Comparison of three methods for teaching and evaluating writing: a quasi-expermiental study. The Delta Phi Epsilon Journal, 46 (