Scaffolding Effective Disciplinary Writing Practices

Researcher: Cathy Malone

Institution: Sheffield Hallam University

Research Year: 2020

Project aims:

This pilot will bring literacy specialists into disciplinary context in a scaled way, examining the impact of the literacy interventions across two universities (Sheffield Hallam University and Bath University). It will consider the impact on home and international student populations. The project is staffed by disciplinary colleagues from the faculty of psychology, TESOL teaching staff and an education developer. Staff will co-design and deliver language focused development activities; analysing exemplars of effective disciplinary writing (Mitchel et al, 2000; Murray et al, 2016), modelling social writing practices, through use of small group academic writing circles. This will be done to develop practices of peer review and editing (Petrova et al, 2009; Roberts et al, 2017) in a structured and supportive environment within the taught curriculum.

In order to fully assess the impact of these activities on diverse student populations we will evaluate the impact of these activities across multiple year groups, through recording classroom sessions, capturing measures of student motivation and self-efficacy pre- and post-intervention (Huerta et al, 2017) and running focus groups. We are also particularly interested in examining transition of these activities into a taught environment, and so will capture staff perceptions and evaluations of delivering these activities.