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Methods in Writing Process Research

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Edited By Dagmar Knorr, Carmen Heine and Jan Engberg

Methods for studying writing processes have significantly developed over the last two decades. The rapid development of software tools which support the collection together with the display and analysis of writing process data and new input from various neighboring disciplines contribute to an increasingly detailed knowledge acquisition about the complex cognitive processes of writing. This volume, which focuses on research methods, mixed methods designs, conceptual considerations of writing process research, interdisciplinary research influences and the application of research methods in educational settings, provides an insight into the current status of the methodological development of writing process research in Europe.
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A showcase on reading and writing: Visual resources for analyzing, teaching and learning how to write academic texts

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The digitalization of reading and writing processes offers new opportunities for planning, conceptualizing, composing and revising scientific texts: Text production on the computer allows non-linear work on digital documents and makes it easier to integrate planning texts like notes, excerpts etc. Moreover, the digitalization allows for new research methods in writing processes as traces of these processes can be recorded and visualized by specific web-programs. The article presents a web-based learning environment for scientific writing (called SKOLA), which addresses students (school and university) struggling with the demanding process of argumentative, intertextual writing. It both scaffolds the writing process by visualizing central aspects of writing from sources in separate working sections and logs the activities for subsequent linguistic analysis and classroom teaching. Using examples from two students, the article compares the writing strategies of both and shows how the visualization of their processes through diagrams and other types of graphic representation may help gather deeper insight into the conditions of successful acquisition of domain-specific writing competencies. At the very least it, shows how methods of visualizing writing processes can be used in teaching (the complexity of) scientific writing.

The production of scientific texts is significantly characterized by intertextual writing. The processes of planning, conceptualizing, formulating and revising are shaped by their use of different texts and materials. They are the expression of the specific discourse-bound nature of scientific writing that results from the expectation that knowledge is not detached from but rather extends the existing ‘state of research’. Scientific...

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