New and old thoughts on the challenges of fycomp and/or “why students can’t write” through the lens of John Warner

Steve Krause,, Dec 17, 2015
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I'll admit, I had to relearn a lot about writing when I entered university. It wasn't because I was a bad writer, and it wasn't because I was locked into the grade-school 'five paragraph style'. In fact, I was already pretty good, with a lot of practice and experience. But there's writing and then there's writing. As the author of this post points out, there are many genres of writing, and it's not possible to learn them all. Writing at the university level is something else. I learned the inverted-pyramid style writing for the newspaper, and that helped a lot (though it's the opposite of 'put your conclusion in the last paragraph', which I've always thought was ridiculous advice). It's also, as the author says, knowing what you want to say, both at the sentence level and at the article level. In thee end, I think I figured these out, and while I'm never opposed to a light edit, I am one of those who eschews drafts and rewrites. Image: Karen Lin.

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