C4E Literacy initiative: creating more effective HSC responses

C4E Literacy Initiative: Creating
more effective HSC responses
 My name is Amanda Stavert. The other academic
involved is Judy Adnum, who has recently been the
Literacy Consultant in the Hunter region.
 We propose to work with Head Teachers across KLAs
to improve the quality of your students’ written
responses in the HSC.
 How often are teachers teaching writing in a HSC unit
of work?
Immature/mature writing
 Scardamalia and Bereiter (1987): distinguish between
knowledge telling (“immature writing”) and knowledge
transforming (mature writing).
 More successful HSC responses transform knowledge
by evaluating and synthesizing what is known to
create a thesis or line of argument supported by
 We hope to assist teachers to develop this skill in their
Characteristics of
immature/mature writing
 Immature writing takes place without planning or
problem solving e.g. factual exposition (“info dump”)
 Mature writing involves planning and problem solving
to create an integrated response e.g. essay
 A number of studies have confirmed the effectiveness
of textual models/scaffolds and planning in improving
the quality of students’ written composition (Graham
& Perin, 2007,2008)
Improving HSC responses
 Backward mapping: teachers think about assessment
before designing units and lessons
1. Identify the desired results
2. Consider relevant outcomes, syllabus content and
and literacy issue: i.e. creating a successful written
HSC response
3. Determine acceptable evidence of student
achievement and the meeting of syllabus standards.
4. Plan instructional activities
Strategies to improve the quality of
students’ HSC written responses
 CONTENT: teachers analyse HSC syllabus, rubrics,
exam questions, marking guidelines and examiner’s
comments to determine what to teach students
1. teachers provide students with models of relevant
Band 6 responses and analyse to identify features of
successful writing
2. Teachers and students jointly construct a conceptual
framework to scaffold students’ ideas when writing.
The C4E Project
 Involves Head Teachers from a variety of KLAs
 Judy and I will work with Head Teachers to assist with
backward mapping and strategies for successful
 Timeline to be determined

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