Can Writing Close the Achievement Gap?

In education, the “achievement gap” refers to consistent differences in academic performance between various groups of students. In the United States, the most significant achievement gaps occur between African American and Hispanic students and their white counterparts, as well as between students from low-income families and students who are better off financially.

How can writing help close the achievement gap?

7 Proofreading Tips for Student Writers

Young writers often believe that revising and proofreading mean the same thing, but they are two different parts of the writing process that accomplish different goals. Revising means iteratively changing a paper’s content to improve the cogency of an argument, bolster the supporting evidence, or adjust the overall organization. Proofreading means checking a paper for surface-level errors (grammar, spelling, and usage) prior to handing it in. Proofreading is usually the last step in the writing process and is often neglected as a deadline rapidly approaches. So let's look at some very important steps to take to improve the proofreading process. 

3 Tips for Responding to Teacher Feedback

As a student, there are few things more daunting (and honestly, more frustrating) than receiving a graded essay filled with edits and instructor comments. After all, you probably spent a good amount of time crafting an essay that now requires more work. It may be tempting to ignore comments altogether or make the easiest, superficial grammar changes—but learning to effectively respond to your instructor’s comments enhances your writing skills and adds another layer to your learning experience. Think about the following tips for considering instructor feedback.

Why Use Creative Writing In Freshman Composition?

The world of academic writing revolves around research, presenting facts, and drawing conclusions. While the purpose of an academic paper may be cut and dry, the language used to get a point across doesn’t have to be. Consider some of the most well-known examples of non-fiction—from Malcolm Gladwell’s statistic-driven work to history and culture giant Guns, Germs and Steel. Despite their educational value, the books manage to capture the attention of academics and laymen alike. While creative writing strategies are more often associated with fiction, their mechanics can be applied to craft more engaging academic compositions.  

How to Use WriteLab in Your English Classroom

English teachers are constantly seeking classroom resources and tools that can enhance writing instruction, foster collaboration between students, and help students master learning and curriculum goals.

With WriteLab, English teachers get a tool that can do all of the above. So how can you make the best use of WriteLab’s benefits and features in your English classroom? Follow the ideas, tips, and strategies below for best results.

Why Writing Improves Thinking

The author and journalist William Wheeler once said, “Good writing is clear thinking made visible.” Not only does good writing demonstrate your thinking skills, but it can also help you improve them.

The same ingredients required for a great piece of writing: reflection, analysis, creativity, the ability to connect and support ideas—are also key components of higher level thinking. The more you sharpen your writing skills, the more you enhance your ability to think critically, creatively, and clearly.

Providing Feedback Students Will Respond To

When it comes to grading student essays, English teachers are always looking for a way to streamline the grading process while still giving students meaningful and effective feedback. Most teachers spend years developing a system that works for them—and years after that figuring out how to improve upon that system. The goals? To make their feedback more comprehensive. To make it more engaging. To see students actually improve their writing. And to grade faster and more effectively.

Learning to Embrace Writing Mistakes

Students often have a phobia of making mistakes, especially when it comes to writing. Students may think that their first draft is too long, or too short, or too boring, or too riddled with grammatical mistakes, leaving them to believe that they are not good writers (and are doomed to fail).