Creative Writing for Critical

Creative Writing for Critical

 

Metareflection: Some Educational
Implications
This chapter addresses some basic ideas about teaching creative writing
for critical thinking. It starts out by discussing what a situated view on
learning implies and then points out some consequences of critical learning
objectives in practical teaching. One result of the research presented
in this book points to the fact that writers try out the identities they wish
to ascribe to themselves and leave out those that they are uninterested in
(See Ivanič 1998, 2006), which may result in poor learning outcomes. In
sects. 10.3–10.4, insights into such key factors are discussed in the light
of constructing syllabuses and assignments in creative writing that aim at
enhancing critical thinking. A few ideas for educational designs of assignments
are also presented and summed up in 10.5.
A traditional view on learning tends to take for granted the transferability
of acquired skills across different activity systems. Such paradigms
assume that what students learn in one context, within or outside of
academia, will be readily accessible and applicable in new contexts.
However, the results presented in this book show that the assumptions
about transferability of knowledge and skills (and methods) must be subject
to further research, in particular concerning links between transferability
and identification processes.A constructivist view (Biggs and Tang 2011; Ivanič 2006) holds that
learning is context specific, and a rhetorical view adds that it is negotiated
within that context. The learners learn and construct knowledge through
identification processes and by imitating specific individuals, specific
groups, or specific texts that they come across in particular social situations
and that they are interested in interacting with. Any learning outcome
in an academic context is thus firmly rooted in an (academic)
activity system, where there will be rules stipulating requirements and
regulating organizational objects. It is in negotiation with such rules and
learners’ personal motives that learning takes place. Thus, an important
conclusion to draw from the case studies presented in this research is that
critical thinking is a situated literacy, formed by and dependent on
context-specific
circumstances and also linked to individual motives. It
should not be taken for granted that such literacy is automatically generalizable
and possible to transfer for application in other contexts. For
example, when the word “critical” is interpreted as synonymous with
having a negative opinion about something (which is, of course, a sensible
understanding of the word outside of an academic course), it is a sign
of affiliation to discoursal identities that are not academic. It is also a sign
of transferability of learning retrieved from systems outside of the academy
that are not viable within it and will have to be changed to function
to meet academic requirements. As mentioned earlier, the outcomes of the
writing assignment in this research may very well reflect the fact that
some students in the data sample encountered reflective writing earlier in
their writing careers, perhaps in their A-level writing in upper secondary
school or in other university courses. Certain characteristics in the critical
reflections that I have defined as exploratory are in fact signs of mastering
a certain type of academic literacy that I implicitly requested. Texts that
show us such characteristics represent evidence of transferability of literacy
between different academic courses that function well when it comes
to writing critical reflections. These signs may also be construed as evidence
of the formation of the discoursal identity of academic writer.
Transferability of knowledge and skills might thus be understood as a
learning trajectory involving formation of discoursal identities over time.
Students may very well have learnt about critical analysis from other
activity systems outside of academia. However, the knowledge is not nec-
A constructivist view (Biggs and Tang 2011; Ivanič 2006) holds that
learning is context specific, and a rhetorical view adds that it is negotiated
within that context. The learners learn and construct knowledge through
identification processes and by imitating specific individuals, specific
groups, or specific texts that they come across in particular social situations
and that they are interested in interacting with. Any learning outcome
in an academic context is thus firmly rooted in an (academic)
activity system, where there will be rules stipulating requirements and
regulating organizational objects. It is in negotiation with such rules and
learners’ personal motives that learning takes place. Thus, an important
conclusion to draw from the case studies presented in this research is that
critical thinking is a situated literacy, formed by and dependent on
context-specific
circumstances and also linked to individual motives. It
should not be taken for granted that such literacy is automatically generalizable
and possible to transfer for application in other contexts. For
example, when the word “critical” is interpreted as synonymous with
having a negative opinion about something (which is, of course, a sensible
understanding of the word outside of an academic course), it is a sign
of affiliation to discoursal identities that are not academic. It is also a sign
of transferability of learning retrieved from systems outside of the academy
that are not viable within it and will have to be changed to function
to meet academic requirements. As mentioned earlier, the outcomes of the
writing assignment in this research may very well reflect the fact that
some students in the data sample encountered reflective writing earlier in
their writing careers, perhaps in their A-level writing in upper secondary
school or in other university courses. Certain characteristics in the critical
reflections that I have defined as exploratory are in fact signs of mastering
a certain type of academic literacy that I implicitly requested. Texts that
show us such characteristics represent evidence of transferability of literacy
between different academic courses that function well when it comes
to writing critical reflections. These signs may also be construed as evidence
of the formation of the discoursal identity of academic writer.
Transferability of knowledge and skills might thus be understood as a
learning trajectory involving formation of discoursal identities over time.
Creative Writing for Critical Creative Writing for Critical Reviewed by Jose Binda on avril 26, 2018 Rating: 5

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