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The purpose of this study was to determine what students know about the process of writing and the characteristics of stories, persuasive arguments, and informational reports. Participants were 50 grade 5 students. Students responded to questions about writing process and the three different types of writing, and showed a nuanced but relatively unsophisticated understanding of the processes underlying writing and the characteristics of three types of writing. Most of their responses centered on procedures for writing and drafting texts as well as obtaining and organizing information for writing. They described each writing genre by referring to elements specific to it, but these descriptions were not complete for any of the three types of writing. Results of regression analyses revealed that students' knowledge about substantive writing processes predicted how much they knew about each type of writing after gender, writing achievement, and emphasis on production procedures during writing were first controlled statistically.


Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education

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Journal Article

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