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The discourse performance of native Indian students : a case study with implications for academic instruction Anderson, Starla H. 1987

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THE DISCOURSE PERFORMANCE OF NATIVE INDIAN STUDENTS: A CASE STUDY WITH IMPLICATIONS FOR ACADEMIC INSTRUCTION by STARLA H. ANDERSON B.A., The U n i v e r s i t y of North Dakota, 1966 M.Ed., The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1977 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF EDUCATION in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department of Cur r i c u l u m and I n s t r u c t i o n We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA APRIL 1987 © S t a r l a H. Anderson, 1987 In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements f o r an advanced degree a t the U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree t h a t the L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e and study. I f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e copying of t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may be granted by the head of my department o r by h i s o r her r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s understood t h a t copying or p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l not be allowed without my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . Department of The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia 2075 Wesbrook P l a c e Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 ABSTRACT T h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n i s concerned with the o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performance of underachieving urban Native Indian secondary students. Primary data was c o l l e c t e d d u r i n g e i g h t i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s conducted i n d i v i d u a l l y with e i g h t case study s u b j e c t s . Within an ABAB desi g n , two n a r r a t i v e and two academic t o p i c s were a l t e r n a t e d . O r a l d i s c o u r s e performance f o l l o w e d w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performance d u r i n g each of the two (composing and r e v i s i o n ) s e s s i o n s conducted f o r each t o p i c . Supplementary data i n c l u d e s : o b s e r v a t i o n s of classroom w r i t i n g behaviors, i n t e r v i e w s , a n a l y s i s of students' r e c o r d f i l e s , and s t a n d a r d i z e d reading and w r i t i n g assessments. The four male and four female s u b j e c t s are from v a r y i n g Native Indian c u l t u r a l backgrounds but share common h i s t o r i e s of f a m i l y i n s t a b i l i t y . Only one sub j e c t c o u l d read and w r i t e at s k i l l l e v e l s expected of l i k e - a g e d mainstream students. The w r i t i n g processes and products of these s u b j e c t s were s i m i l a r to those of other u n s k i l l e d (Basic) w r i t e r s . They were o v e r l y concerned with s u r f a c e e r r o r s and l i t t l e concerned with o v e r a l l c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n . D e s p i t e d i f f i c u l t i e s with w r i t i n g , and c o n t r a r y to e s t a b l i s h e d language theory developed from r e s e a r c h with non-Native p o p u l a t i o n s , these s u b j e c t s were more at ease with w r i t t e n performance than o r a l performance. F u r t h e r , t h e i r w r i t i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s appeared to be more r e l a t e d to the demands of academic d i s c o u r s e than w r i t i n g s k i l l s per se. They were more at ease with w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e than any other combination of mode and genre. While p r e v i o u s r e s e a r c h has seldom d i s t i n g u i s h e d c l e a r l y between mode and genre of d i s c o u r s e , the f i n d i n g s of t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n suggest that each of these f a c t o r s may have d i f f e r i n g e f f e c t s f o r i n d i v i d u a l s and v a r y i n g sub-groups. F i n d i n g s a l s o suggest that s t r u c t u r a l comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e may r e f l e c t d i f f e r i n g l i n g u i s t i c demands of genre as much as mode. The i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s were found to be an e f f e c t i v e means f o r data c o l l e c t i o n . These s e s s i o n s a l s o r e v e a l e d d i r e c t i o n f o r improving methods of academic i n s t r u c t i o n . The s u b j e c t s appeared to develop a b e t t e r understanding of the purpose of academic d i s c o u r s e as they were helped to generate knowledge, t h e o r i z e about t h i s knowledge and shape t h e i r arguments. A l l s u b j e c t s i n d i c a t e d that they would f e e l more c o n f i d e n t about p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n academic d i s c u s s i o n s a f t e r t h i n k i n g about the d i s c u s s i o n t o p i c through such a t a l k - w r i t e p r o c e s s . i v TABLE OF CONTENTS LIST OF TABLES v i i i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS x DEDICATION xv CHAPTER ONE: STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM AND ITS SIGNIFICANCE 1 Statement of the Problem 1 The Purpose of the Study 5 D e f i n i t i o n of Terms 5 Major Questions 7 R a t i o n a l e 9 J u s t i f i c a t i o n 13 Assumptions 14 L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study 14 CHAPTER TWO: SURVEY OF THE LITERATURE 16 I n t r o d u c t i o n 16 Background Research and T h e o r e t i c a l Debate 18 Language D i v e r s i t y and Classroom L e a r n i n g : The E f f e c t s of Teacher A t t i t u d e 26 The Language of L i t e r a c y and the A c q u i s i t i o n of Academic Dis c o u r s e 31 O r a l and Wri t t e n D i s c o u r s e : The C o g n i t i v e R e l a t i o n s h i p 37 O r a l and Wri t t e n D i s c o u r s e : S t r u c t u r a l Comparisons .. 51 W r i t i n g as Process: Case Study Observations 61 Summary and Con c l u s i o n 69 V CHAPTER THREE: METHODOLOGY 74 I n t r o d u c t i o n 74 F i e l d Research 75 Case Study Research and Composing Theory 78 The Research S e t t i n g 81 The Sub j e c t s 83 Role of the Researcher 86 Research Design 90 Case Study I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Sessions 90 T o p i c s 93 D i r e c t i o n s 94 Data C o l l e c t i o n 98 Data Samples 98 D e f i n i n g C a t e g o r i e s f o r A n a l y s i s 100 Methods of A n a l y s i s 105 The Research Questions 106 The Code and Coding Chart 116 Conc l u s i o n 120 CHAPTER FOUR: ORAL AND WRITTEN DISCOURSE PERFORMANCE ACROSS TWO GENRES: NARRATIVE AND ACADEMIC .121 I n t r o d u c t i o n 121 W r i t i n g Assessments 124 W r i t i n g P r e f e r e n c e s 127 Comparisons of W r i t t e n - O r a l Language Performances ...129 Wr i t t e n Language Performance 129 Composing Task Independently Completed 130 Reading Assessments 133 O r a l Language Performance 135 Word Counts f o r Best Performances 137 Timed Word Counts 144 Pause Times 146 Duration of Pause Times 147 Comparisons of O r a l and W r i t t e n Products 151 R h e t o r i c a l O r g a n i z a t i o n s : N a r r a t i v e 151 R h e t o r i c a l O r g a n i z a t i o n s : Academic 154 Nonstandard L e x i c a l Features 158 S y n t a c t i c Complexity 160 Assessments of Cohesive Q u a l i t i e s 167 Students' P r e f e r e n c e s : O r a l and W r i t t e n 168 Summary of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s 171 I m p l i c a t i o n s of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s 173 CHAPTER FIVE: THE ACQUISITION OF ACADEMIC DISCOURSE: AN INTERACTIVE TALK-WRITE LEARNING PROCESS 175 I n t r o d u c t i o n 175 Case Study Sessions 178 Independent W r i t i n g Behaviors 178 R e f l e c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Behaviours 182 I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e L e a r n i n g 184 E x p l o r a t o r y Talk 187 S c a f f o l d i n g 193 Learning to G e n e r a l i z e 197 Assuming a Voice of A u t h o r i t y 201 Generating Conceptual Frameworks as H e u r i s t i c s ..202 R e v i s i o n as Part of a C o n c e p t u a l i z i n g Process ...207 Sub j e c t s ' Views of the I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Process 211 Summary of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s 214 I m p l i c a t i o n s of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s 216 CHAPTER SIX: CONCLUDING DISCUSSION 218 The Purpose and Nature of the Study 218 Performance Assessments and Home-School Background ..218 O r a l and W r i t t e n R e l a t i o n s h i p s 225 I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Composing 230 v i i REFERENCES 237 APPENDIX A: Interview Schedule 250 APPENDIX B: Overview of Case Study 258 APPENDIX C: W r i t i n g Assessment Assignments and Rating S c a l e s 260 APPENDIX D: Key to Ta l k - W r i t e Coding System 265 APPENDIX E: Sample of Coded T a l k - W r i t e Session 268 APPENDIX F: Sample Coded Chart 271 APPENDIX G: Sample W r i t i n g C l a s s e s 273 v i i i LIST OF TABLES Table Page 2.1 M o f f e t t ' s Spectrum of Disco u r s e 41 3.1 Background of the Subjects 84 3.2 . E i g h t Case Study I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Sessions 91 3.3 Colour Coding C a t e g o r i e s : T a l k - W r i t e Sessions 102 4.1 Grade E i g h t W r i t i n g Assessment R e s u l t s f o r Case Study S u b j e c t s : N a r r a t i v e 127 4.2 Grade E i g h t W r i t i n g Assessment R e s u l t s f o r Case Study S u b j e c t s : Opinion 127 4.3 Composing Tasks Independently Completed and Completed with Help 131 4.4 G a t e s - M a c G i n i t i e Reading Test Grade L e v e l Norms f o r E i g h t Case Study Subje c t s 134 4.5 T o t a l Number of Words: O r a l and W r i t t e n Comparisons 139 4.6 General Comparisons of Content E l a b o r a t i o n 140 4.7 Words Produced per Minute 145 4.8 R a t i o s of T o t a l Pause Times and T o t a l Words .... 147 4.9 Duration of Pause Times O r a l and W r i t t e n Comparisons 148 4.10 Comparisons of S y n t a c t i c Complexity (words per t - u n i t ) 163 4.11 Mean and Range Comparisons of S y n t a c t i c Complexity 164 4.12 Assessments of Cohesive Q u a l i t i e s 168 5.1 Independent W r i t i n g Behaviors 179 ix 5.2 R e f l e c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Behaviors 183 5.3 I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Questions 185 5.4 E x p l o r a t o r y T a l k 187 5.5 Comparisons of Longest Sustained Chunks of O r a l D i s c o u r s e : Dialogue vs. Performance 214 X ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS There are many people who have had a p a r t to p l a y i n g i v i n g support to t h i s r e s e a r c h p r o j e c t . My teach e r s and c o l l e a g u e s , f a m i l y and f r i e n d s have a l l nurtured i t s s p i r i t as w e l l as i t s i n t e l l e c t u a l development. Without the unwavering encouragement of my a d v i s o r , Bernard Mohan, t h i s work would not have been completed. Bernie has c o n s i s t e n t l y been r e s p e c t f u l of the te a c h i n g and f a m i l y demands that I have faced d u r i n g the years of my d o c t o r a l study and t h i s r esearch endeavor. My other committee members, Don F i s h e r , Andrea L u n s f o r d and George Tomkins, a l s o p r o v i d e d me with the kind of c o n s t r u c t i v e feedback and support that was re q u i r e d to s u s t a i n t h i s e f f o r t . At the end, the thorough c r i t i q u e of the e x t e r n a l examiner, Dr. C a r l U r i o n , was very h e l p f u l i n the f i n a l shaping of the t h e s i s . U.B.C. f a c u l t y members whose l e s s o n s and encouragement have i n f l u e n c e d my approach to academic endeavors i n c l u d e : Jane G a s k e l l , Marvin Lazerson, Kenneth Reeder, Vincent D'Oyley, Joe Belanger, Syd B u t l e r , Ron Jobe, Marion Crowhurst, Frank E c h o l s , David Bain, and Roland Gray. I have str o n g memories of many p r o v o c a t i v e debates with my f e l l o w students d u r i n g my years of d o c t o r a l study. My f r i e n d and t e a c h i n g p a r t n e r , C a r o l Nakonechny, i s primary among those people who c h a l l e n g e d me to ask new q u e s t i o n s as w e l l as to t h i n k i n new ways about o l d q u e s t i o n s . Sydney C r a i g , S a l l y C l i n t o n and J u l i a Gibson each shared many 1 CHAPTER ONE STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM AND ITS SIGNIFICANCE Statement of the Problem Research e f f o r t s of the past twenty years have p r o v i d e d c o n v i n c i n g evidence that the p u b l i c schools i n Canada and the U n i t e d S t a t e s work b e t t e r f o r c h i l d r e n from home backgrounds with high socio-economic s t a t u s (Breton 1972; Coleman 1966; Jencks et al. 1972; P o r t e r 1965). At the same time, the m u l t i - c u l t u r a l t e x t u r e of these c o u n t r i e s c r e a t e s a d d i t i o n a l c o n s t r a i n t s on the e f f i c a c y of common c u r r i c u l a and norm-referenced t e s t i n g p r a c t i c e s (Aoki et al. 1978; Ashworth 1979; Werner 1974). Native Indian c h i l d r e n i n Canada and the Un i t e d S t a t e s are among those who have been most p e n a l i z e d by the economic order of these s o c i e t i e s and they are among those who l e a s t b e n e f i t from the experience of p u b l i c s c h o o l i n g (Adler and Brusegard 1980; Hawthorn 1967; Knox 1980; Krotz 1980; Yerbury 1980). In 1972, the N a t i o n a l Indian Brotherhood put forward i t s p o l i c y paper "Indian C o n t r o l of Indian E d u c a t i o n " to the f e d e r a l government of Canada as a t e s t of i t s o f f i c i a l m u l t i c u l t u r a l p o l i c y . The acceptance of t h i s paper both i n p r i n c i p l e and i n resource has r e s u l t e d i n a growth of 2 c u r r i c u l a r i n i t i a t i v e s on re s e r v e s a c r o s s the country, e s p e c i a l l y f o r the development of Native language c u r r i c u l a . At the p r o v i n c i a l l e v e l of a d m i n i s t r a t i o n , there have a l s o been attempts to develop Native s t u d i e s programs and adapted i n s t r u c t i o n a l s t r a t e g i e s f o r N a t i v e students i n p r o v i n c i a l p u b l i c school classrooms (Arbess 1981; Nakonechny and Anderson 1982, Kle s n e r , 1982). There i s o f f i c i a l r e c o g n i t i o n that the course contents and t e a c h i n g s t r a t e g i e s that are a p p r o p r i a t e f o r the m a j o r i t y p o p u l a t i o n are not n e c e s s a r i l y e f f e c t i v e with m i n o r i t y groups such as Native Indian students. S t i l l , d e s p i t e a p o l i t i c a l commitment t o a p l u r a l i s t i c s o c i e t y , which i s r e f l e c t e d i n recent c u r r i c u l u m i n i t i a t i v e s , a d i s p r o p o r t i o n a t e number of Canadian Native Indian students do not complete secondary s c h o o l . Admittance Restricted, a f e d e r a l government p u b l i c a t i o n , i n d i c a t e s that 84 per cent of Indian students across the country do not complete high school (Canadian C o u n c i l on C h i l d r e n and Youth 1978). Recent Vancouver School Board s t u d i e s a l s o i n d i c a t e that Native Indian students have c o n s i d e r a b l y higher drop-out r a t e s than other students i n the Vancouver school system (Hunter and Stevens 1980). At the post-secondary l e v e l , the numbers of Na t i v e Indian students are i n c r e a s i n g but t h i s group c o n t i n u e s to be underrepresented (Bowd 1977). Research conducted i n d i v e r s e r e g i o n a l c o n t e x t s ( r u r a l and urban) i n d i c a t e s that t e n s i o n s between the c u l t u r e s of 3 the home and the school have made l e a r n i n g d i f f i c u l t f o r many Native Indian students i n mainstream s c h o o l s . These c u l t u r a l f a c t o r s i n c l u d e : d i f f e r e n c e s i n value systems, knowledge s t r u c t u r e s , s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s , l e a r n i n g s t y l e s and uses of language (Dumont 1972; Hunter and Stevens 1980; John 1972; K l e i n f e l d 1979; More 1984; Murdoch 1981; Nakonechny 1986; P h i l i p s 1972; S c o l l o n and S c o l l o n 1981; T o o t o o s i s 1 983; Wolcott 1967; Wolfram et al. 1979). While i t i s evident that many s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l f a c t o r s work a g a i n s t the s c h o o l i n g success of Native Indian students i n mainstream s c h o o l s , language i s c o n s i d e r e d to be one v a r i a b l e worth i n v e s t i g a t i n g (Leap 1982). A 1980 Vancouver School Board study demonstrates that the language achievement l e v e l s of N a t i v e Indian students i n the Vancouver school system were c o n s i d e r a b l y lower than those of other students i n t h e i r age range (Hunter and Stevens 1980). Although these f i n d i n g s are based on teacher r e p o r t c a r d r a t i n g s which do not n e c e s s a r i l y r e f l e c t the true language competencies of students, p a r t i c u l a r l y those with u n f a m i l i a r language p a t t e r n s and communication s t r a t e g i e s , the data do i n d i c a t e that N a t i v e Indian students have d i f f i c u l t y with the language demands of mainstream classrooms. C o n s i d e r a b l e r e s e a r c h e f f o r t i n d i c a t e s t hat the language d i f f i c u l t i e s experienced by Native Indian students i n the s c h o o l environment are not unique to t h i s group, however. Teachers are known to have p r e j u d i c i a l a t t i t u d e s 4 towards any c h i l d r e n whose s o c i a l mannerisms and forms of speech do not conform to t h e i r n o t i o n s of proper behavior and appearance, and c o r r e c t speech. They are l i k e l y to a c t more p o s i t i v e l y towards c h i l d r e n who respond most e a s i l y to the language and l i t e r a c y t asks that dominate classroom a c t i v i t y (Keddie 1973; Labov 1972; Rosenthal and Jacobson 1968, R i s t 1973; Stubbs, 1976). Prominent r e s e a r c h e r s have argued that teacher a t t i t u d e towards nonstandard d i a l e c t s and not d i a l e c t i n t e r f e r e n c e i n h i b i t s the o r a l language development and l i t e r a c y a c q u i s i t i o n of nonstandard speakers (Cazden 1972; Goodman and Buck 1976; R i s t 1973). I n v e s t i g a t i o n of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e of nonstandard speakers and the a c q u i s i t i o n of convention-bound w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e i s r e l a t i v e l y recent ( B a r t e l t 1982; B r i c e Heath 1983; Cayer and Sacks 1979; Chessin and Auerbach 1982; Epes 1985; F a r r and Janda 1985; Shaughnessy 1977; Wolfram et al. 1979). As there are few such i n v e s t i g a t i o n s with Native Indian students, there i s l i t t l e knowledge p e r t a i n i n g to the o r a l and w r i t t e n performances of students w i t h i n the p o p u l a t i o n ( B a r t e l t 1982; Chessin and Auerbach 1982; Wolfram et al . 1979). T h i s la c k of knowledge has l e f t educators s p e c u l a t i n g that language i s a primary f a c t o r i n i n h i b i t i n g the s c h o o l i n g success of Native Indian s t u d e n t s . I t i s evident that there i s a need to c h a l l e n g e t h i s s p e c u l a t i o n with c a r e f u l r e s e a r c h . 5 I t would c e r t a i n l y be premature to conclude at t h i s time that language q u e s t i o n s may have only dependent i n f l u e n c e , not independent i n f l u e n c e over Indian student e d u c a t i o n a l s u c c e s s . I t i s not premature, however, to s t r e s s the need f o r c a r e f u l c o n s i d e r a t i o n of the language i s s u e i n Indian e d u c a t i o n , so that s c h o l a r s and classroom personnel can both move beyond the s t e r e o t y p e s about l i n g u i s t i c d e f i c i e n c y which so o f t e n plague d i s c u s s i o n s of m i n o r i t y education i n America. (Leap 1982, p. 19) The Purpose of the Study The purpose of t h i s study has been to i n v e s t i g a t e the o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performance of a small sample of underachieving urban N a t i v e Indian secondary s t u d e n t s . The study has been concerned with i n v e s t i g a t i n g w r i t i n g performance i n r e l a t i o n to o r a l d i s c o u r s e performance and the ways i n which i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k s t r a t e g i e s i n f l u e n c e s u b j e c t s ' w r i t i n g p rocesses and w r i t t e n products, when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r n a r r a t i v e and academic genres. D e f i n i t i o n of Terms Urban N a t i v e Indian secondary student: An urban Native Indian secondary student i s d e f i n e d as any secondary student of N a t i v e Indian a n c e s t r y , s t a t u s or non-status, who has been r a i s e d most of h i s or her l i f e i n an urban s o c i a l and/or c u l t u r a l community that i s populated predominantly by Native Indian people. 6 Academic D i s c o u r s e : Academic d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n , i s a form of s u s t a i n e d d i s c o u r s e that i s concerned with the e x p o s i t i o n and c r i t i c a l a n a l y s i s of t h e o r e t i c a l knowledge and ideas. In the w r i t t e n mode, i t i s c o n v e n t i o n a l l y developed w i t h i n the f o l l o w i n g r h e t o r i c a l framework: t h e s i s statement/restatement f o r c l a r i f i c a t i o n / i l l u s t r a t i o n , . evidence, argument/conclusion (Mina Shaughnessy, 1977). General statements are i n f e r r e d from p a r t i c u l a r cases and supported by l o g i c a l argument and e x p l a n a t i o n ; p a r t i c u l a r cases are c o n v e r s e l y examined w i t h i n a broad conceptual framework. The v o i c e of academic d i s c o u r s e i s detached as the speaker or w r i t e r attempts to assume an o b j e c t i v e stance. Secondary school c u r r i c u l a commonly r e f e r to t h i s genre as " e x p o s i t o r y " and i t i s expected that secondary students have achieved b a s i c competency i n t h i s form of w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e by g r a d u a t i o n . N a r r a t i v e D i s c o u r s e : N a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n , i s shaped by a sequence of events, w i t h i n a temporal framework. The events are u s u a l l y presented i n c h r o n o l o g i c a l order. N a r r a t i v e i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a p e r s o n a l v o i c e and i s t y p i f i e d by s u b j e c t i v e knowing and i n t e r p e r s o n a l involvement. Features which have been i d e n t i f i e d as c h a r a c t e r i z i n g o r a l d i s c o u r s e are a l s o found i n n a r r a t i v e w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , i . e . r e p e t i t i o n of sounds and words, s y n t a c t i c s t r u c t u r e s and rhythm. (See Deborah Tannen 1982.) 7 Composing Process; For the purposes of t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n , the composing process i s d e f i n e d as i n c l u d i n g any independent behaviors e x h i b i t e d by the s u b j e c t s that are d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d to g e n e r a t i n g , s u s t a i n i n g and r e v i s i n g t h e i r w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e samples. The c a t e g o r i e s used f o r the purposes of d e s c r i b i n g each s u b j e c t ' s composing process have been borrowed from Sondra P e r l : p l a n n i n g , w r i t i n g , pausing, reading, r e v i s i n g , e d i t i n g , commenting, e v a l u a t i n g . The composing process i s c o n s i d e r e d t o be both l i n e a r and r e c u r s i v e . T h i s d e f i n i t i o n does not presume u n i f o r m i t y of behavior among s u b j e c t s or between genres. F u r t h e r , t h i s d e f i n i t i o n does not i n c l u d e i n t e r a c t i v e o r a l c a t e g o r i e s as i t s purpose i s to i d e n t i f y p a t t e r n s of independent composing b e h a v i o r s . Major Questions T h i s r e s e a r c h study was designed t o be e x p l o r a t o r y i n nature, exposing q u e s t i o n s f o r more broad-based study r a t h e r than p r o v i d i n g d e f i n i t i v e answers. A number of ques t i o n s were d e f i n e d throughout the r e s e a r c h e r ' s i n i t i a l f i e l d w o r k i n v e s t i g a t i o n and i n r e f e r e n c e to areas of concern suggested by r e s e a r c h l i t e r a t u r e . These q u e s t i o n s p r o v i d e d d i r e c t i o n f o r the i n v e s t i g a t i o n . 1. What are the w r i t i n g competencies of a small sample of urban Native Indian secondary students as assessed by 8 e x t e r n a l standards such as those determined f o r the 1978 province-wide w r i t i n g assessments conducted by the B r i t i s h Columbia M i n i s t r y of Education? In what ways i s the w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performance of these students comparable to t h e i r o r a l d i s c o u r s e performance when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r n a r r a t i v e and academic genres? ( i ) Is there evidence that the syntax s t r u c t u r e s , r h e t o r i c a l o r g a n i z a t i o n and l e x i c a l items that c h a r a c t e r i z e these students' o r a l d i s c o u r s e a l s o c h a r a c t e r i z e the form of t h e i r w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , whether n a r r a t i v e or academic? ( i i ) Is there evidence that the content items that c h a r a c t e r i z e these students' o r a l d i s c o u r s e a l s o c h a r a c t e r i z e the content of t h e i r w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , whether n a r r a t i v e (persons, i n c i d e n t s , d e s c r i p t i o n s ) or academic ( o p i n i o n s , arguments, knowledge)? ( i i i ) Is there evidence that these students generate w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e with the same ease as o r a l d i s c o u r s e , whether n a r r a t i v e or academic? In what ways are these students' s t a t e d p r e f e r e n c e s v i s - a - v i s o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e r e l a t e d to t h e i r performances in these modes, whether n a r r a t i v e or academic? In what ways are the w r i t i n g processes and w r i t t e n products of these students i n f l u e n c e d by the t a l k that o c c u r r e d throughout the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s ? 9 ( i ) Is there evidence t h a t these students used s e l f - r e f l e c t i v e t a l k to f a c i l i t a t e t h e i r w r i t i n g processes? ( i i ) Is there evidence that the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k that o c c u r r e d f a c i l i t a t e d the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t i n g processes? ( i i i ) Is there evidence that the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k that o c c u r r e d i n f l u e n c e d the form (syntax s t r u c t u r e , r h e t o r i c a l o r g a n i z a t i o n , l e x i c a l items) of the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t t e n products? ( i v ) Is there evidence that the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k that o c c u r r e d i n f l u e n c e d the content of the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t t e n products, whether n a r r a t i v e (persons, i n c i d e n t s , d e s c r i p t i o n s ) or academic ( o p i n i o n s , arguments, knowledge)? (v) Is there evidence that i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k occurred more f r e q u e n t l y depending upon whether the assigne d genre i s n a r r a t i v e or academic? Rationale During the past twenty ye a r s , many prominent academics have been engaged i n i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the language s t r u c t u r e s and usage of students from d i f f e r e n t c u l t u r a l and socio-economic groups i n the p u b l i c school classrooms of E n g l i s h - s p e a k i n g c o u n t r i e s ( B r i c e Heath 1983; Cazden 1972; Deutsch 1967; Engelman and B e r e i t e r 1966; Goodman and Buck 10 1976; Labov 1970; Lawton 1968; Loban 1976; R i s t 1973; Rosen and Burgess 1980; Stubbs 1976; Wells 1985, to name a few). However, most of t h i s work focuses on the language of w o r k i n g - c l a s s students and the d i a l e c t s of Black E n g l i s h . There have been only a small number of s t u d i e s that have been concerned with i s s u e s p e r t a i n i n g to the classroom language of Native Indian students (Dumont 1972; Hunter and Stevens 1980; John 1972; K l e i n f e l d 1979; Nakonechny 1986; P h i l i p s 1970; S c o l l o n and S c o l l o n 1981; T o o t o o s i s 1983; Wolfram et al. 1979). Wolfram et al. (1979) conducted the f i r s t major i n v e s t i g a t i o n that addressed i s s u e s d e r i v e d from comparisons of the o r a l and w r i t t e n language of N a t i v e Indian elementary students. More recent i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of o r a l f e a t u r e s found i n the w r i t i n g s of Native Indian students have been conducted at the c o l l e g e l e v e l ( B a r t e l t 1982; Chessin and Auerbach 1982). T h e o r e t i c a l d i s c u s s i o n s of o r a l and w r i t t e n language tend to assume that o r a l d i s c o u r s e i s an e a s i e r mode of e x p r e s s i o n than w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e as i t s focus i s on the i n t e r p e r s o n a l f u n c t i o n of language and i t r e l i e s on p a r a l i n g u i s t i c modes of ex p r e s s i o n to enhance i t s meaning. T h i s argument i s embedded i n the argument that w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e i s more d i f f i c u l t as i t focuses more on i d e a t i o n a l f u n c t i o n s of language and i s thus l i n g u i s t i c a l l y more demanding. A w r i t e r i s dependent upon grammatical f e a t u r e s such as syntax and l e x i c a l items to make h i s / h e r meaning c l e a r ( B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia 1982; Olson 1977; Smith 1982). 11 E x p r e s s i v e genres of w r i t i n g such as n a r r a t i v e are co n s i d e r e d to be a l i n k between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of communication ( B r i t t o n 1970). N a r r a t i v e i s a genre that people are f a m i l i a r with and i t s s t r u c t u r a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s are a p p r o p r i a t e f o r both o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e (Shaughnessy 1977). I t i s argued that n a r r a t i v e i s an e a s i e r genre f o r beginning w r i t e r s , whatever t h e i r age, and that n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g ought to be the foundation from which academic w r i t i n g develops ( B r i t t o n et al. , 1 975). Research by Deborah Tannen (1982) demonstrates that many s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e s found i n o r a l d i s c o u r s e are a l s o found i n w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , when the genre i s h e l d constant. Tannen 1s comparative s t u d i e s of o r a l and w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e i l l u s t r a t e s that such f e a t u r e s as r e p e t i t i o n of sounds and words, s y n t a c t i c s t r u c t u r e s and rhythms which have been i d e n t i f i e d as c h a r a c t e r i z i n g o r a l d i s c o u r s e are a l s o found i n n a r r a t i v e w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . The grammatical f e a t u r e s used by a good s t o r y t e l l e r to engage a l i s t e n e r in a s u b j e c t i v e way are a l s o found i n the t r a n s c r i p t of a good s t o r y w r i t e r . H i d i and H i l d y a r d (1983) found c l e a r d i f f e r e n c e s on measures of semantic w e l l formedness and s t r u c t u r a l q u a l i t y between the n a r r a t i v e and o p i n i o n essays of c h i l d r e n in grades three and f i v e . They a l s o found these d i f f e r e n c e s to be evident i n the o r a l p r o d u c t i o n s of the c h i l d r e n . They concluded that i t i s not n e c e s s a r i l y the process of w r i t i n g 12 that i s d i f f i c u l t f o r c h i l d r e n but ra t h e r the c o g n i t i v e and l i n g u i s t i c demands that are made by c e r t a i n d i s c o u r s e forms, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . The f i n d i n g s of s e v e r a l case study i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the w r i t i n g processes of u n s k i l l e d c o l l e g e l e v e l w r i t e r s i n d i c a t e t h a t students who speak nonstandard d i a l e c t s t r a n s f e r t h e i r o r a l language s t r u c t u r e s i n t o t h e i r w r i t i n g d e s p i t e e f f o r t s to wr i t e standard E n g l i s h . The student s u b j e c t s i n these s t u d i e s focused t h e i r a t t e n t i o n on the mechanical a s p e c t s of t h e i r w r i t i n g ; even though they were not c l e a r about standard grammatical forms and conventions, they were aware that they e x i s t e d and made concert e d e f f o r t s in attempting to produce them. The r e s u l t was that l i t t l e time and a t t e n t i o n was given to the o v e r a l l c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n of the purpose and content of t h e i r w r i t i n g t a s k s ; the w r i t i n g processes of these students were n e g a t i v e l y a f f e c t e d by an over concern about s u r f a c e f e a t u r e s (Epes 1985; P e r l 1978; Pianko and Rogers 1977; Sommers 1979). While p r e v i o u s r e s e a r c h conducted with Native Indian students found that nonstandard d i a l e c t i c a l and r h e t o r i c a l f e a t u r e s were evident i n the o r a l and w r i t t e n samples of t h e i r N a t i v e Indian s u b j e c t s , the i n v e s t i g a t i o n s d i d not examine whether the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t i n g processes were a f f e c t e d by attempts to c o r r e c t these f e a t u r e s ( B a r t e l t 1982, Chessin and Auerbach 1982; Wolfram et al. 1979). F u r t h e r , the r e s e a r c h was not concerned with i d e n t i f y i n g 1 3 o r a l and w r i t t e n competencies a c r o s s genre. The present i n v e s t i g a t i o n has aimed to go beyond the comparative a n a l y s i s of r h e t o r i c a l and s u r f a c e f e a t u r e s i n o r a l and w r i t t e n samples. J u s t i f i c a t i o n Despite recent changes i n the Indian Act which secure more autonomy of c u r r i c u l u m on r e s e r v e s , few changes have been made i n the c u r r i c u l u m o f f e r i n g s of urban schools which are populated by unprecedented numbers of Native Indian students (Yerbury 1980). A d i s p r o p o r t i o n a t e number of Native Indian students do not f a r e w e l l i n the p u b l i c s c h o o l s and i t appears that d i f f e r e n c e s i n language use are p a r t i a l l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t h i s . The f i n d i n g s of t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n were expected to have i m p l i c a t i o n s which might f a c i l i t a t e improvement of academic i n s t r u c t i o n f o r underachieving urban Native Indian secondary students. It was expected that t h i s r e s e a r c h would make the f o l l o w i n g c o n t r i b u t i o n s i n t h i s regard: 1. The r e s u l t s of the study were expected to provide b e t t e r i n d i c a t i o n of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performances of underachieving urban Native Indian secondary s t u d e n t s . 2. The r e s u l t s of t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n were expected to provide d i r e c t i o n f o r improving academic i n s t r u c t i o n f o r underachieving urban Native Indian secondary students. 14 3. T h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n was expected to c o n t r i b u t e t o the t h e o r e t i c a l d i s c u s s i o n of the nature of academic d i s c o u r s e , i t s purpose, the r e l a t i o n s h i p of i t s purpose and form, as w e l l as the processes by which i t i s generated. Assumptions 1. I t was assumed that the s u b j e c t s of t h i s study would have a minimum of e i g h t years of p u b l i c school education and that a l l s u b j e c t s would have normal i n t e l l i g e n c e t h a t would t e s t out w i t h i n an average range on a c u l t u r a l l y unbiased measure. 2. The t h e o r e t i c a l assumptions of t h i s study are that o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e are generated from the same language and knowledge r e s o u r c e s , and that while w r i t t e n language may depend upon o r a l language i n i t s e a r l y stages of development, o r a l language development may be enhanced through w r i t i n g at l a t e r stages of w r i t i n g development. L i m i t a t i o n s of the Study T h i s study was undertaken with a small sample of und e r a c h i e v i n g urban N a t i v e Indian secondary students. These students are not n e c e s s a r i l y t y p i c a l of Native Indian students being educated on r e s e r v e s or i n small communities; n e i t h e r are they r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of those who are able to f u n c t i o n w i t h i n the mainstream classrooms. The f i n d i n g s of 15 t h i s study cannot be g e n e r a l i z e d to a l l secondary Native students any more than they can be g e n e r a l i z e d to address the o r a l and w r i t t e n language behaviors of a l l secondary students. 16 CHAPTER TWO SURVEY OF THE LITERATURE Int r o d u c t i o n During the past two decades, c o n s i d e r a b l e r e s e a r c h e f f o r t has focused on qu e s t i o n s concerned with language and classroom l e a r n i n g . I t i s i n d i s p u t a b l e that language i s the most v i t a l means by which c h i l d r e n a c q u i r e knowledge, s k i l l s , and understanding i n the classrooms of l i t e r a t e c u l t u r e s . Many language t h e o r i s t s argue that language development i s c l o s e l y l i n k e d with the development of a b s t r a c t c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n and that language, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n , p r o v i d e s a means f o r shaping and expressing thought. The major means by which c h i l d r e n i n our schools formulate knowledge and r e l a t e i t to t h e i r own purposes and view of the world are speech and w r i t i n g .... Not only i s t a l k i n g and w r i t i n g a major means by which people l e a r n , but what they l e a r n can o f t e n h a r d l y be d i s t i n g u i s h e d from the a b i l i t y to communicate i t . Learning to communicate i s at the heart of educ a t i o n . (Douglas Barnes, 1976) Although most of the resea r c h concerned with classroom language has been i n t e r e s t e d i n the language development of a l l students, much of i t has focused on the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the language of students from d i f f e r e n t c u l t u r a l and 17 socio-economic groups and the r e l a t i v e success of t h e i r classroom l e a r n i n g . The g e n e r a l f i n d i n g s of t h i s i n q u i r y i n d i c a t e t hat the language of classrooms more c l o s e l y resembles the language spoken by c h i l d r e n r a i s e d i n m i d d l e - c l a s s homes than the language spoken by c h i l d r e n r a i s e d i n low socio-economic environments (Stubbs 1976). These language d i f f e r e n c e s are c o n s i d e r e d to be at l e a s t p a r t i a l l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the l e a r n i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s e xperienced by c h i l d r e n from low socio-economic backgrounds i n p u b l i c school classrooms. While d i a l e c t i s s u e s have been p e r v a s i v e i n the debates concerned with the r e l a t i o n s h i p between language and the lower s c h o o l i n g achievements of c h i l d r e n from low socio-economic groups, the evidence brought to bear suggests that i t i s not s u r f a c e f e a t u r e s such as d i a l e c t or s t y l e of d i s c o u r s e that i s at i s s u e . Teacher a t t i t u d e s toward nonstandard d i a l e c t s or d i s c o u r s e s t y l e s may i n h i b i t the growth of a c h i l d ' s language development but that i s a separate i s s u e . Those c h i l d r e n who have l e a r n e d i n the home environment to use language to perform the c o g n i t i v e tasks needed f o r formal academic r e f l e c t i o n and e x p r e s s i o n w i l l be at an advantage i n the classroom - whatever t h e i r d i a l e c t or s t y l e of .verbal e x p r e s s i o n ( B r i c e Heath 1983; Hymes 1980; Labov 1972). Academic d i s c o u r s e i s a f o r m a l i z e d h e u r i s t i c used w i t h i n s c h o o l s e t t i n g s . Whereas everyday problem s o l v i n g and h y p o t h e t i c a l t h i n k i n g o ccurs w i t h i n s p e c i f i c c o n t e x t s , 18 the problem s o l v i n g and h y p o t h e t i c a l t h i n k i n g of academia occurs i n a d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d environment (the classroom, a s t u d y ) . The no t i o n s and i s s u e s being d i s c u s s e d are a l s o d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d - they are a b s t r a c t e d from e m p i r i c a l experience and do not n e c e s s a r i l y represent s p e c i f i c e m p i r i c a l e x p e r i e n c e s . Academic d i s c o u r s e r e q u i r e s an a b i l i t y to o b j e c t i f y experience, to be detached and examine one's own b i a s e s i n order to a r r i v e at g e n e r a l i z e d knowledge that might be r e p l i c a t e d by o t h e r s . C h i l d r e n who are u n f a m i l i a r with t h i s d e p e r s o n a l i z e d approach to understanding t h e i r experience are bewildered by the a b s t r a c t nature of classroom d i s c o u r s e . T h i s bewilderment p e r s i s t s when they attempt to l e a r n the conventions of w r i t t e n academic d i s c o u r s e i n t h e i r e a r l y secondary school years and beyond (Shaughnessy 1977). There are many s t r u c t u r a l , f u n c t i o n a l and i n t e r a c t i o n a l dimensions of language to c o n s i d e r i n the study of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between classroom achievement and the home languages of students from v a r i e d s o c i o - c u l t u r a l backgrounds. In a s o c i e t y such as ours that i s committed to e q u a l i z i n g access of o p p o r t u n i t y w i t h i n the school environment, i t remains imperative that we continue i n our attempts to understand these complex dimensions. Background Research and T h e o r e t i c a l Debate The e a r l y language t h e o r i e s of B a s i l B e r n s t e i n p r o v i d e d the t h e o r e t i c a l underpinnings from which much resea r c h and 19 heated debate evolved d u r i n g the l a t e 1960s i n England and the U n i t e d S t a t e s r e g a r d i n g d i f f e r e n c e s between language used i n the classroom and language used i n the homes of c h i l d r e n who were not m i d d l e - c l a s s . B e r n s t e i n argued with l i m i t e d e m p i r i c a l evidence that working c l a s s c h i l d r e n d i d l e s s w e l l i n school than m i d d l e - c l a s s c h i l d r e n because they were s o c i a l i z e d i n t h e i r homes to use a ' r e s t r i c t e d language code' which o f f e r e d l i m i t e d s y n t a c t i c a l o ptions and p a r t i c u l a r p o i n t s of view which l i m i t e d t h e i r a b i l i t y to enter i n t o a b s t r a c t , d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d c onceptual a c t i v i t y . Middle c l a s s c h i l d r e n , on the other hand, were c o n s i d e r e d to have been s o c i a l i z e d to speak an 'e l a b o r a t e d language code' which allowed f o r s y n t a c t i c complexity and u n i v e r s a l i s t i c p o i n t s of view which were s u i t e d to a b s t r a c t thought. The l a t t e r code was c o n s i d e r e d to be s u i t e d to the tasks of education and i t was assumed that i t p r e v a i l e d i n the classroom ( B e r n s t e i n 1971). M a r t i n Deutsch and h i s a s s o c i a t e s at the I n s t i t u t e f o r Developmental Stud i e s at New York U n i v e r s i t y were among the most i n f l u e n t i a l r e s e a r c h e r s i n v o l v e d i n the study of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between language and c o g n i t i o n and the e f f e c t s of s o c i a l c l a s s background and r a c i a l o r i g i n s (Deutch 1967). While Deutsch was s e n s i t i v e to the dangers of e t h n o c e n t r i c assessments of c u l t u r a l groups by non-members, he argued that c h i l d r e n from poverty l e v e l homes were handicapped i n the school environment not only because of a lack of p h y s i c a l amenities but because of a lack of c u l t u r a l a m e n ities such as inadequate nurture of speech i n the home: 20 I t i s g e n e r a l l y agreed that the language-symbolic process p l a y s an important r o l e at a l l l e v e l s of l e a r n i n g ... language development evolved through the c o r r e c t l a b e l l i n g of the environment, and through the use of a p p r o p r i a t e words f o r the r e l a t i n g and combining and recombining of the concrete and a b s t r a c t components i n d e s c r i b i n g , i n t e r p r e t i n g , and communicating p e r c e p t i o n s , e x p e r i e n c e s , and i d e a t i o n a l matter. One can p o s t u l a t e on c o n s i d e r a b l e evidence that language i s one of the areas which are most s e n s i t i v e t o the impact of the m u l t i p l i c i t y of problems a s s o c i a t e d with the stimulus d e p r i v a t i o n found i n the marginal circumstances of l o w e r - c l a s s l i f e . (Deutsch 1967, p. 50) In the l a t e 1960s, the c o n c l u s i o n s of two major s t u d i e s r e i n f o r c e d the no t i o n that the f a i l u r e of l a r g e numbers of c h i l d r e n from poverty backgrounds was a statement of the f a i l i n g s of the home and not the s c h o o l . The E q u a l i t y of E d u c a t i o n a l Opportunity Survey (1966) d i r e c t e d by James Coleman and fi n a n c e d by the U.S. O f f i c e of Education concluded t h a t f a c t o r s of f a m i l y l i f e had more impact on student success than any c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the school (Coleman 1966). The Westinghouse and Ohio U n i v e r s i t y Study p u b l i s h e d i n 1969 argued that p r e - s c h o o l i n t e r v e n t i o n was i n s u f f i c i e n t to overcome the e f f e c t s of a de p r i v e d home environment and that i n t e r v e n t i o n s t r a t e g i e s should be extended i n t o the primary grades to concentrate on language d e f i c i e n c i e s as w e l l as d e f i c i e n c i e s i n areas such as s p e l l i n g and a r i t h m e t i c ( i n F r o s t 1970, pp. 201). The theory of c u l t u r a l d e p r i v a t i o n thus became the r a t i o n a l e f o r the f a i l u r e of the p u b l i c school system to e q u a l i z e the l e a r n i n g achievements of c h i l d r e n from 21 d i f f e r e n t socio-economic s t r a t a . T h i s r a t i o n a l e was i n f l u e n t i a l i n the development of i n t e r v e n t i o n programs, p a r t i c u l a r l y those that adopted the C a r l B e r e i t e r and S i e g f r i e d Engelmann c u r r i c u l u m designed to change the d i a l e c t s t r u c t u r e of black p r e - s c h o o l c h i l d r e n . There are standards of knowledge and a b i l i t y which are c o n s i s t e n t l y h e l d to be v a l u a b l e i n the sc h o o l s , and any c h i l d i n the schools who f a l l s short of these standards by reason of h i s p a r t i c u l a r c u l t u r a l background may be s a i d to be c u l t u r a l l y d e p r i v e d . I t does not matter that he may have other knowledge and other s k i l l s which i n other contexts might be valued more h i g h l y . There are no sc h o o l s i n our s o c i e t y i n which the value s and s k i l l s p e c u l i a r to l o w e r - c l a s s groups are valued and f o s t e r e d ... Any e d u c a t i o n a l program so conceived would q u i t e p r o p e r l y be regarded as a means of d e p r i v i n g poor people of a chance to a c q u i r e those c u l t u r a l b e n e f i t s necessary f o r the improvement of t h e i r s t a t u s (Engelmann and B e r e i t e r , 1966, p.24). The most vehement c r i t i c of t h i s p o i n t of view was the American l i n g u i s t , W i l l i a m Labov. Labov's massive 1968 f i e l d r e s e a r c h study of the language of ado l e s c e n t nonstandard speakers d e t a i l e d the l i n g u i s t i c s t r u c t u r e s of American Black E n g l i s h to i l l u s t r a t e i t s l i n g u i s t i c adequacy. Labov argued that i f c e r t a i n groups of c h i l d r e n who spoke nonstandard d i a l e c t s had l i m i t e d c o n c e p t u a l a b i l i t y , i t was not because of the p o t e n t i a l of t h e i r l i n g u i s t i c s t r u c t u r e s . The concept of v e r b a l d e p r i v a t i o n has no b a s i s i n s o c i a l r e a l i t y ; i n f a c t , black c h i l d r e n i n the urban ghettoes r e c e i v e a great d e a l of v e r b a l s t i m u l a t i o n , hear more well-formed sentences than m i d d l e - c l a s s c h i l d r e n , and p a r t i c i p a t e f u l l y i n a h i g h l y v e r b a l c u l t u r e ; they have the same b a s i c vocabulary, possess the same c a p a c i t y f o r conceptual l e a r n i n g and use the same l o g i c as anyone e l s e who l e a r n s to speak and understand E n g l i s h . The myth of v e r b a l 22 d e p r i v a t i o n i s p a r t i c u l a r l y dangerous because i t d i v e r t s a t t e n t i o n from r e a l d e f e c t s of our e d u c a t i o n a l system to imaginary d e f e c t s of the c h i l d . (Labov 1972, p. 60) While Labov's r e b u t t a l i s d i r e c t e d towards ' c o r r e c t i v e ' i n s t r u c t i o n a l approaches such as the Bereiter-Engelmann program, Labov a l s o makes r e f e r e n c e to B e r n s t e i n as one of the o r i g i n a t o r s of the a t t i t u d e that the language of c h i l d r e n who are not m i d d l e - c l a s s i s i n f e r i o r . Labov was c r i t i c a l of the r e s e a r c h methods employed by B e r n s t e i n , who conducted formal i n t e r v i e w s and o b s e r v a t i o n s away from the n a t u r a l language community of h i s s u b j e c t s . Labov i l l u s t r a t e d i n h i s own r e s e a r c h that black c h i l d r e n spoke very l i t t l e with white i n t e r v i e w e r s i n formal i n t e r v i e w s i t u a t i o n s but that they were c o n s i d e r a b l y more t a l k a t i v e and d i s p l a y e d more s o p h i s t i c a t e d t h i n k i n g when the i n t e r v i e w s took plac e i n f o r m a l l y w i t h i n the youngsters' speech community with a p a r t i c i p a n t - o b s e r v e r with whom they had become f a m i l i a r (Labov 1972). B e r n s t e i n responded to Labov's c r i t i c i s m by arguing that he was not concerned with d i a l e c t but r a t h e r a 'code of meaning and order' inherent i n the language of d i f f e r e n t s o c i a l groups. He agreed that i t was t e a c h e r s ' uninformed a t t i t u d e s about the nature of language t h a t was the main o b s t a c l e to the classroom l e a r n i n g of nonstandard speakers, and maintained that the i s s u e had to do with h e l p i n g c h i l d r e n a c q u i r e the f a c i l i t y to use language i n ways that would enable them to a r r i v e at u n i v e r s a l i s t i c meanings. 23 L i n g u i s t D e l l Hymes supports B e r n s t e i n ' s p o s i t i o n : There ijs i n e q u a l i t y i n command of v e r b a l resources, and i n access to them, and i t i s not the case that i n e q u a l i t y would be overcome simply by ending p r e j u d i c e and d i s c r i m i n a t i o n a g a i n s t d i v e r s e forms of speech. Some d i s c r i m i n a t i o n among v e r b a l a b i l i t i e s and products i s not p r e j u d i c e , but a c c u r a t e judgment ... We must be t h a n k f u l to B e r n s t e i n f o r the courage to i n s i s t on an e s s e n t i a l t r u t h - w i t h i n one and the same 'language', there are s o c i a l l y shaped c o n t r a s t s i n ways of speaking and v e r b a l resource ... The i m p l i c a t i o n of B e r n s t e i n ' s argument i s that command of the more e x p l i c i t s t y l e ( h i s ' e l a b o r a t e d code') should be made common to a l l . (Hymes 1980, p. 40) Thus, Hymes supports B e r n s t e i n ' s argument that those c h i l d r e n who are encouraged i n the home environment to a c q u i r e the language resources which f a c i l i t a t e the a b s t r a c t t h i n k i n g and q u e s t i o n i n g processes r e q u i r e d f o r academic l e a r n i n g are rewarded by the s c h o o l p l a c e . Those c h i l d r e n who do not a c q u i r e these language resources at home are not p r o v i d e d with s u f f i c i e n t a t t e n t i o n i n the school environment so that they might develop these more e x p l i c i t , context independent uses of language. In e f f e c t , these c h i l d r e n are denied an education - i n the broadest sense of the term, they are denied access to u n i v e r s a l i s t i c o rders of meaning. Labov (1972) agreed with Hymes' c o n c l u s i o n . In h i s much p u b l i c i z e d paper, Academic Ignorance and Black Intelligence, Labov pres e n t s strong evidence of the d i f f e r i n g language performances of Black c h i l d r e n i n d i f f e r i n g r e s e a r c h c o n t e x t s . However, he a l s o argues that while these c h i l d r e n ' s language i s l i n g u i s t i c a l l y sound, they needed a s s i s t a n c e i n becoming more aware of t h e i r use of language. 24 We have a l r e a d y conceded that black c h i l d r e n need h e l p i n a n a l y z i n g language i n t o i t s su r f a c e components, and i n being more e x p l i c i t . (Labov 1972, p. 66) L i k e Hymes, Labov argues that i t i s the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the school to pr o v i d e t h i s k i nd of awareness and not the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the home. Walter Loban's t h i r t e e n - y e a r study of the language development of over 200 Oakland school c h i l d r e n p r o v i d e s some e m p i r i c a l evidence f o r these arguments. Loban found that c h i l d r e n from low socio-economic backgrounds (whatever t h e i r e t h n i c i t y ) s t a r t e d school with l e s s s c h o o l - r e l a t e d language p r o f i c i e n c y than c h i l d r e n from homes with economic advantages and that throughout the s c h o o l i n g years, the d i s p a r i t y of p r o f i c i e n c y widened - both i n the o r a l and w r i t t e n modes. The group r a t e d high ... f o r t h i r t e e n years by l a r g e numbers of teachers ... does indeed e x h i b i t more language complexity and g r e a t e r use of the resources of the language. In measure a f t e r measure, the s u b j e c t s whose language power impressed numerous teachers are the ones who show... - longer communication u n i t s [Hunt's t - u n i t ] - g r e a t e r e l a b o r a t i o n of s u b j e c t and p r e d i c a t e - more embedding i n t r a n s f o r m a t i o n a l grammar, e s p e c i a l l y multi-base d e l e t i o n transforms - g r e a t e r use of a d j e c t i v a l dependent c l a u s e s - more use of dependent c l a u s e s of a l l kinds - g r e a t e r v a r i e t y and depth of vocabulary - b e t t e r c o n t r o l of mazes (lower p r o p o r t i o n of mazes to t o t a l speech) - higher scores on t e s t s of reading a b i l i t y - higher scores on t e s t s of l i s t e n i n g - i n c r e a s i n g s k i l l with connectors ( u n l e s s , although, e t c . ) - g r e a t e r use of t e n t a t i v e n e s s : s u p p o s i t i o n , hypotheses, c o n j e c t u r e , c o n d i t i o n a l statements. (Loban 1976, pp. 88-89) 25 Loban's e x p l a n a t i o n of the d i s p a r i t i e s between the low- and high-performance groups are re m i n i s c e n t of p o s i t i o n s taken by M a r t i n Deutsch and o t h e r s ten years e a r l i e r . We b e l i e v e that s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s under which the high-performance s u b j e c t s l i v e d p r o v i d e d them with p r a c t i c e i n s i t u a t i o n s r e q u i r i n g and encouraging power of e x p r e s s i o n . T h e i r home l i v e s and t h e i r c o m p a t i b i l i t y with the school environment exacted of them complexity of thought, f u n c t i o n a l uses of a b s t r a c t i o n , d i s t i l l a t i o n s of experience i n t o words, an imaginative f o r s e e i n g of consequences. T h e i r need f o r more concepts induced language f o r c a t e g o r i z i n g , comparing, c o n t r a s t i n g and c o n j e c t u r i n g as w e l l as f o r c l a r i f y i n g and communicating f e e l i n g s and emotions. I t does seem to us that i f a l l c h i l d r e n had s i m i l a r experiences and s i m i l a r motives f o r e x p r e s s i o n , t h e i r language, responding to such c h a l l e n g e s , would demonstrate much the same degree of p r o f i c i e n c y . (Loban 1976, p. 89) Loban's study i s v a l u a b l e as documentation of the r e l a t e d development of c h i l d r e n ' s s k i l l s i n speech, reading and w r i t i n g over the time-span of t h e i r p u b l i c s c h o o l i n g ; i t i s a l s o s i g n i f i c a n t f o r i t s c l e a r evidence t h a t c h i l d r e n from low socio-economic groups do not have the same language resources as c h i l d r e n from more ec o n o m i c a l l y advantaged groups. There are weaknesses i n these comparisons, however. For example, Loban's a n a l y s i s i s p r i m a r i l y concerned with s u r f a c e s t r u c t u r e f e a t u r e s r a t h e r than content. F u r t h e r , he does not d i f f e r e n t i a t e between genres of d i s c o u r s e . Labov would take issue with both of these l i m i t a t i o n s . He argues that t e a c h e r s concern themselves more with conventions of ( o r a l and w r i t t e n ) language than with content and makes the c l a i m that l o w e r - c l a s s black c h i l d r e n have more competence i n the n a r r a t i v e genre than m i d d l e - c l a s s c h i l d r e n (Labov 26 1970). A f u r t h e r l i m i t a t i o n of Loban's study i s that he d i d not examine the i n t e r a c t i o n s w i t h i n the sc h o o l environment which might a l s o have had an e f f e c t on the d i f f e r e n t outcomes between students from d i f f e r e n t s o c i a l c l a s s backgrounds. Language D i v e r s i t y and Classroom Learning: The E f f e c t s of Teacher A t t i t u d e The e f f e c t s of teacher a t t i t u d e on student achievement have been found to be s i g n i f i c a n t by many re s e a r c h e r s ( P e r s e l l 1977; Rosenthal and Jacobson 1968). Language educators are p a r t i c u l a r l y convinced that teachers' a t t i t u d e s towards students' language forms and s t y l e s of communication w i l l e i t h e r encourage or i n h i b i t the language development of t h e i r s t u d e n t s . Although there i s only l i m i t e d r e s e a r c h concerned with the classroom language of Native Indian students, c o n s i d e r a b l e r e s e a r c h e f f o r t has focused on qu e s t i o n s of the language a t t i t u d e s of white teachers working with c h i l d r e n who speak Black American d i a l e c t (Goodman and Buck 1976; R i s t 1973). A f t e r more than a decade of e x t e n s i v e a n a l y s i s of the i n t e r f e r e n c e of nonstandard d i a l e c t and the a c q u i s i t i o n of l i t e r a c y , reading s p e c i a l i s t Kenneth S. Goodman concluded that a teacher's a t t i t u d e toward her students' spoken d i s c o u r s e was s i g n i f i c a n t l y more i n f l u e n t i a l on t h e i r reading success than any s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e of the nonstandard d i a l e c t . 27 The only s p e c i a l disadvantage which speakers of low-status d i a l e c t s s u f f e r i n l e a r n i n g to read i s one imposed by t e a c h e r s and s c h o o l s . R e j e c t i o n of t h e i r d i a l e c t s and educators' c o n f u s i o n of l i n g u i s t i c d i f f e r e n c e with l i n g u i s t i c d e f i c i e n c y i n t e r f e r e s with the n a t u r a l process by which reading i s a c q u i r e d and undermines the l i n g u i s t i c s e l f - c o n f i d e n c e of d i v e r g e n t speakers. Simply speaking, the disadvantage of the d i v e r g e n t speaker, black or white, comes from l i n g u i s t i c d i s c r i m i n a t i o n . I n s t r u c t i o n based on r e j e c t i o n of l i n g u i s t i c d i f f e r e n c e i s the core of the problem (Goodman and Buck 1976). Goodman argues that nonstandard speakers a c t u a l l y have a l i n g u i s t i c advantage over higher s t a t u s standard speakers as they not only have communicative competence w i t h i n t h e i r own speech communities but they have had to l e a r n to understand a myriad of d i a l e c t s w i t h i n the broader s o c i e t y . The a c q u i s i t i o n of l i t e r a c y i s the a c q u i s i t i o n of one of those d i a l e c t s , and d e s p i t e the evidence of d i a l e c t i n t e r f e r e n c e i n t h e i r reading, comprehension i s not n e c e s s a r i l y impaired by d i a l e c t - i n v o l v e d miscues. These students develop a r e c e p t i v e c o n t r o l of the standard d i a l e c t of t e x t and focus on the c o n s t r u c t i o n of meaning rather than the s t r u c t u r e of the language. Teachers who accommodate t h i s focus on meaning and do not c o r r e c t miscues that are i r r e l e v a n t to the meaning of the t e x t enhance the student's development as a reader. Teachers who are o v e r l y concerned with the c o r r e c t i o n of miscues i n h i b i t t h e i r students' reading development (Goodman and Buck 1976). S o c i o l o g i s t Ray R i s t ' s (1973) classroom f i e l d r e s e a r c h d e t a i l s the processes by which primary school c h i l d r e n are 28 s o r t e d i n t o groups of ' a c h i e v e r s ' and 'non-achievers' a c c o r d i n g to teacher e x p e c t a t i o n s . Although R i s t ' s i n t e r p r e t i v e b i a s might be taken to task, h i s d e s c r i p t i o n s are i l l u s t r a t i v e that those c h i l d r e n whose language and behavior do not conform to the e x p e c t a t i o n s of the school are l e a s t l i k e l y to r e c e i v e p o s i t i v e reinforcement from the t e a c h e r . When I entered the room, Mrs. Benson was p o i n t i n g a s t i c k at a group of boys from the T i g e r and C a r d i n a l groups who were p l a y i n g with one another on the f l o o r . Mrs. Benson t o l d them to "get o f f the f l o o r and q u i t a c t i n ' l i k e Clowns." ...Mrs. Benson spent the m a j o r i t y of her t e a c h i n g time with e i t h e r the T i g e r or C a r d i n a l reading group. Once more, I observed her g i v i n g an academic assignment to the C a r d i n a l s and a nonacademic assignment to the Clowns. ( R i s t 1973, p. 220) A l i m i t e d number of s t u d i e s of the classroom language of American Indian students with white teachers a l s o i l l u s t r a t e the e f f e c t s of teacher a t t i t u d e upon student performance. Robert V. Dumont's 1964 study of two Cherokee classrooms i s a d e s c r i p t i o n of a classroom of Indian c h i l d r e n who c o o p e r a t i v e l y d e f i e d the a u t h o r i t a r i a n i n s t r u c t i o n a l methods of t h e i r teacher by remaining s i l e n t when they were qu e s t i o n e d . The teacher's d e t e r m i n a t i o n to maintain c o n t r o l over the events of the classroom through v e r b a l d i r e c t i v e s not only d e p r i v e d him of a u t h o r i t y but assured that h i s Indian students would not be engaged in the o r a l language a c t i v i t y which i s c o n s i d e r e d by many language educators to be v i t a l f o r the development of reading and w r i t i n g s k i l l s (Barnes 1976; B r i t t o n , et al. 1975). While 29 E n g l i s h may be spoken i n the home, the u n d e r l y i n g s o c i o - l i n g u i s t i c r u l e s d e r i v e d from the o r a l t r a d i t i o n s of a Native Indian language and c u l t u r e may be i n c o n f l i c t with the s o c i o - l i n g u i s t i c r u l e s of non-Native E n g l i s h speaking peoples ( S c o l l o n and S c o l l o n 1981). A recent f i e l d r e s e a r c h case study of the home and school language of a f i v e - y e a r - o l d Cree c h i l d concluded that the v e r b a l resources of t h i s c h i l d were ex t e n s i v e but that the classroom program provided few o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r these v e r b a l resources to be f u r t h e r developed. [At home] .. the c h i l d was c o n t i n u o u s l y using her language to i n t e r p r e t and i n f e r from her expe r i e n c e s , to seek v e r i f i c a t i o n of her hypotheses and generate new i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s i n l i g h t of t h i s e x p e r i e n c e . I t was a l s o found that through i n t e r a c t i o n with others, the c h i l d was o f t e n i n v o l v e d i n a c o l l a b o r a t i v e c o n s t r u c t i o n of meaning through t a l k .. In sc h o o l , i t was found that there was l i t t l e s p e c i f i c , d e l i b e r a t e l y - s t r u c t u r e d t e a c h e r - t o - c h i l d i n t e r a c t i o n .. when i t d i d occur, ... [ i t ] tended to be r e l a t e d to the a d m i n i s t r a t i v e , d i s c i p l i n a r y and t e c h n i c a l requirements of the task-at-hand. During the teacher-to-whole c l a s s lesst>n s i t u a t i o n , student t a l k tended to be monosyllabic and g e n e r a l l y l i m i t e d i n purpose. V e r b a l i n t e r a c t i o n tended to c h a r a c t e r i z e d by the i n i t i a t i o n - r e s p o n s e - f e e d b a c k and f i l l - i n - t h e - b l a n k d i s c o u r s e p a t t e r n s (Tootoosis 1983, p. v i i ) . Susan P h i l i p s ' (1972) study of the communicative s t r a t e g i e s of the West Coast S a l i s h i n Warm Spr i n g s , Oregon i l l u s t r a t e s the p o s i t i v e e f f e c t s of t e a c h i n g methods which complement the customary ways of Indian students' home communication p a t t e r n s . C h i l d r e n working together i n int i m a t e groupings f e l t a s e c u r i t y with each other that allowed them to c o n f i d e n t l y share t h e i r knowledge and 30 s k i l l s . The teacher's w i l l i n g n e s s and a b i l i t y to adapt classroom p r a c t i c e s f a c i l i t a t e d the o r a l language development of her Indian students. J u d i t h K l e i n f e l d ' s s t u d i e s of the s c h o o l i n g achievements of Native Indian students i n Alaska i s a l s o r e v e a l i n g of the e f f e c t of teacher a t t i t u d e . In one a r t i c l e , she argues t h a t teachers who assume a ' c u l t u r a l r e l a t i v i s t ' stance which i d e a l i z e s 'Indian ways' are as misguided as the e t h n o c e n t r i c white teacher who b e l i e v e s that t h e i r Native students are ' c u l t u r a l l y d e p r i v e d . ' K l e i n f e l d i s e s p e c i a l l y a f f r o n t e d by the tendency of the ' c u l t u r a l r e l a t i v i s t ' to a v o i d a c c u l t u r a t i n g Native students i n t o 'White man's ways' by exempting them from academic and b e h a v i o r a l standards that are a p p l i c a b l e to other students. She argues that t h i s a t t i t u d e i s d e t r i m e n t a l to t h e i r p o t e n t i a l l e a r n i n g achievements ( K l e i n f e l d 1976, pp. 20-25). K l e i n f e l d ' s r e s e a r c h at St. Mary's Boarding School i n Alaska bears t h i s out. The Native Indian students a t t e n d i n g S t . Mary's were more s e l f - c o n f i d e n t and v e r b a l than Native students i n a v a r i e t y of other secondary programs. They were a l s o more l i k e l y to pursue and succeed at post-secondary education, d e s p i t e d i f f i c u l t i e s with academic reading and w r i t i n g . K l e i n f e l d b e l i e v e s t h i s school was s u c c e s s f u l f o r i t s Native students because i t p r o v i d e d a secure s o c i a l environment while m a i n t a i n i n g high academic standards ( K l e i n f e l d 1979). 31 I t i s c l e a r that the a t t i t u d e s which t e a c h e r s h o l d toward c h i l d r e n ' s d i f f e r e n t language forms and s t y l e s of e x p r e s s i o n w i l l a f f e c t the language development and l i t e r a c y achievements of t h e i r s t u d e n t s . At the same time, i t i s c l e a r that c h i l d r e n are not e q u a l l y w e l l prepared i n the home environment f o r the l i n g u i s t i c demands that are put on them when they begin t h e i r classroom l e a r n i n g . C h i l d r e n who are i n t r o d u c e d to reading and w r i t i n g f o r the f i r s t time when they begin t h e i r formal s c h o o l i n g are at a d i s t i n c t disadvantage. The Language of L i t e r a c y and the A c q u i s i t i o n of Academic Discourse Gordon Wells' r e c e n t l y p u b l i s h e d s t u d i e s of B r i t i s h c h i l d r e n ' s language development concludes that the most s i g n i f i c a n t s c h o o l - r e l a t e d f a c t o r i n the home environment i s the c h i l d ' s p r e - s c h o o l experience with books. C h i l d r e n who are not f a m i l i a r with the d i s c o u r s e s t r u c t u r e s and o r g a n i z a t i o n a l frameworks of standard p u b l i s h e d m a t e r i a l s at the time of school entry d i d not have the same f a c i l i t y with a c q u i r i n g reading s k i l l s as those c h i l d r e n who had i n t e r n a l i z e d those s t r u c t u r e s from when they were read bedtime s t o r i e s i n toddlerhood. The most important p r e d i c t o r of attainment i n re a d i n g at the age of 7 years was the c h i l d ' s knowledge about the conventions of reading on entry to s c h o o l . T h i s i n turn was s t r o n g l y p r e d i c t e d by the extent to which the c h i l d ' s parents had shared with him t h e i r own i n t e r e s t i n books and r e a d i n g and w r i t i n g and by the q u a l i t y of t h e i r everyday c o n v e r s a t i o n with him ... i t seems p o s s i b l e t h a t , 32 i n s o f a r as language i s a determining f a c t o r , i t i s a d i f f e r e n t i a l f a m i l i a r i t y with the f u n c t i o n s and v a l u e s of l i t e r a c y that p r o v i d e s the l i n k between f a m i l y background and e d u c a t i o n a l attainment (Wells, 1981, p. 263). Recent work by schema t h e o r i s t s a l s o i n d i c a t e s that f a m i l i a r i t y with the conventions of l i t e r a c y p r ovide important c o n t e x t u a l c l u e s to the reader which enables p r e d i c t i o n and 'guess-work', the keys to reading with f a c i l i t y ( S p i r o , Bruce and Brewer, 1981). C h i l d r e n who are nurtured from an e a r l y age with the contents of storybooks not only a c q u i r e an understanding and a p p r e c i a t i o n f o r what reading i s about (how i t i s done and what can be gained from i t ) ; they are a l s o s o c i a l i z e d i n t o a l i t e r a t e form of speech. David Olson and others who have been i n f l u e n c e d by the work of Michael S c r i b n e r argue that teachers use a formal, detached form of speech which sounds as though they are "speaking a w r i t t e n language" (Olson and Torrance i n F r e d e r i k s e n and Dominic 1981, p. 238). Many c h i l d r e n hear t h i s form of speech f o r the f i r s t time when they enter a classroom and they must l e a r n to i n t e r a c t with t h i s u n f a m i l i a r language while they are s i m u l t a n e o u s l y introduced to i t i n w r i t t e n form. Even though a primary teacher might adopt an i n f o r m a l r e g i s t e r to accommodate the more personal r e l a t i o n s h i p s they might have with young c h i l d r e n , they must n e v e r t h e l e s s prepare t h e i r p u p i l s to i n t e r a c t with more formal language s t r u c t u r e s that are c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of academic d i s c o u r s e . C h i l d r e n whose parents have read to 33 them from s c i e n c e books and the l i k e , and o f f e r e d e l a b o r a t e d e x p l a n a t i o n s i n the process, have an e a s i e r time with t h i s home/school t r a n s i t i o n . The c h i l d who has l i t t l e p r e - s c h o o l exposure to l i t e r a c y or l i t e r a t e ' s t a n d a r d i z e d ' forms of speech i n the home environment w i l l be faced with new ways of o r g a n i z i n g thoughts, i n f o r m a t i o n and s t o r y schema while a l s o l e a r n i n g to make meaning by decoding symbolized language. At the same time, these c h i l d r e n are being i n t r o d u c e d to d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d knowledge — knowledge of o b j e c t s , people, events, and p l a c e s - o u t s i d e of one's p e r s o n a l experience. F i e l d r e s e a r c h conducted by S h i r l e y B r i c e Heath (1983) p r o v i d e s an ex t e n s i v e d e s c r i p t i v e a n a l y s i s of the d i f f e r e n t i a l home s o c i a l i z i n g and s c h o o l i n g experiences of c h i l d r e n from three d i s t i n c t communities i n a southeastern region of the Un i t e d S t a t e s . M i l l w o r k e r s ' c h i l d r e n of the Black community of Trackton and the White community of R o a d v i l l e were s o c i a l i z e d i n t o o r a l and l i t e r a t e language f u n c t i o n s p r i m a r i l y concerned with p r a c t i c a l matters and i n t e r p e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n s . Middle c l a s s r a c i a l l y mixed c h i l d r e n of the townspeople were s o c i a l i z e d i n t o o r a l and l i t e r a t e language f u n c t i o n s i n ways that e x p l i c i t l y r e v e a l e d c l a s s i f i c a t i o n systems and h i e r a r c h i c a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s . The townspeople c h i l d r e n a l s o l e a r n e d to d i s t i n g u i s h between the context of o r a l and w r i t t e n t e x t s that were meant to be taken l i t e r a l l y and those that were meant to be imaginary or re p r e s e n t a t i o n a l . 34 As c h i l d r e n , the townspeople l e a r n e d the r u l e s f o r t a l k i n g about and responding to books and w r i t i n g t a s k s ; they came to accept r e t r i e v a l of the s t r u c t u r e and i n f o r m a t i o n of w r i t t e n t e x t s as c r i t i c a l to the p r e s e n t a t i o n of form and content i n t h e i r o r a l t e x t s . In s c h o o l , they found c o n t i n u i t y of these p a t t e r n s of u s i n g o r a l and w r i t t e n language, as w e l l as an i n c r e a s i n g emphasis on e x p o s i t o r y t a l k and w r i t i n g around events or items not p h y s i c a l l y present, but r e f e r r e d to i n w r i t t e n sources ... The t a l k to R o a d v i l l e c h i l d r e n d i f f e r s i n q u a n t i t y and kind from that of the townspeople ... they are given few occasions f o r extended n a r r a t i v e s , i m a g i n a t i v e f l i g h t s of e s t a b l i s h i n g new c o n t e x t s , or m a n i p u l a t i n g f e a t u r e s of an event or item Trackton c h i l d r e n .. have had to f i n d t h e i r own schemata i n the complex, multi-channeled stream of s t i m u l i about them .. No one l i f t s l a b e l s and f e a t u r e s out of t h e i r c o n t e x t s f o r e x p l i c a t i o n ; no one requests r e p e t i t i o n s from Trackton c h i l d r e n . Thus t h e i r e n try i n t o a classroom which depends on responses based on l i f t i n g items and events out of context i s a shock. T h e i r a b i l i t i e s to c o n t e x t u a l i z e , to remember what may seem to the teacher to be an u n r e l a t e d event as s i m i l a r to another, to l i n k seemingly d i s p a r a t e f a c t o r s i n t h e i r e x p l a n a t i o n s , and to c r e a t e h i g h l y i m a g i n a t i v e s t o r i e s are suppressed i n the classroom .. The s c h o o l ' s approach to reading and l e a r n i n g e s t a b l i s h e s d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d s k i l l s as f o u n d a t i o n a l i n the h i e r a r c h y of academic s k i l l s . ( B r i c e Heath 1983, pp. 262, 352-353) Ron and Suzanne B.K. S c o l l o n (1981) s p e c u l a t e from t h e i r work with the Athapaskans that these N a t i v e c h i l d r e n are faced with l e a r n i n g new grammatical s t r u c t u r e s and d i s c o u r s e s t y l e s as they l e a r n the complex l i t e r a c y s k i l l s of reading and w r i t i n g . At the same time, they are being i n t r o d u c e d to a d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d form of knowledge. Many language t h e o r i s t s b e l i e v e that c h i l d r e n from nonstandard speech communities should be i n t r o d u c e d to l i t e r a c y through t h e i r own language forms and e x p e r i e n c e . 35 C h i l d r e n experience a new and very d i f f e r e n t need f o r language i n school s i t u a t i o n s . Here a new ki n d of ambiguity of meaning e x i s t s which r e q u i r e s c h i l d r e n to make e x p l i c i t even that i n f o r m a t i o n which i n an everyday context c o u l d be taken f o r granted ... C h i l d r e n need experiences i n school that favor the l e a r n i n g of w r i t t e n c u l t u r e through the medium of the o r a l c u l t u r e , thus b u i l d i n g on the i n t e r p r e t i v e s k i l l s and l i n g u i s t i c understandings that c h i l d r e n b r i n g to the school experience, as a b a s i s f o r f u r t h e r l e a r n i n g . (Cook-Gumperz and Gumperz, 1981, pp. 106-107) The a c q u i s i t i o n of l i t e r a c y i s thus c o n s i d e r e d to be an extension of c h i l d r e n ' s o r a l language r a t h e r than a d i s j u n c t i v e c o r r e c t i n g of 'inadequate d i a l e c t s ' . As c h i l d r e n l e a r n to encode meanings through t h e i r mastery of s c r i p t , they w i l l g r a d u a l l y be int r o d u c e d to v a r i e t i e s of language forms and f u n c t i o n s i n p u b l i s h e d reading m a t e r i a l s . Barth (1979) argues that too many Native Indian students i n B r i t i s h Columbia are r e f e r r e d to s p e c i a l education c l a s s e s f o r remediation because of tea c h e r s ' la c k of understanding about d i a l e c t . He a l s o b e l i e v e s that these c h i l d r e n would b e n e f i t from being i n t r o d u c e d to l i t e r a t e forms of language by l e a r n i n g to read f i r s t through language forms that r e f l e c t t h e i r o r a l language forms. Harold Rosen's work with nonstandard speakers i n London i l l u s t r a t e s the p o t e n t i a l c h i l d r e n have to develop a continuum of d i a l e c t s and r e g i s t e r s to be used i n d i f f e r e n t c o ntexts f o r d i f f e r e n t purposes (Rosen and Burgess, 1980). When c h i l d r e n ' s home language i s res p e c t e d by a u t h o r i t i e s in the s c h o o l - p l a c e , c h i l d r e n are more w i l l i n g to experiment with t h e i r language - ask i n g q u e s t i o n s , d e veloping theses 36 and p l a y i n g with ideas and language i t s e l f . The language of t e x t p r o v i d e s s t i m u l u s f o r t h i s e x p e r i m e n t a t i o n . F a m i l i a r i t y with w r i t t e n t e x t not only p r o v i d e s models f o r o r a l language, i t i s i n t e g r a l with students' development of w r i t i n g s k i l l s . Reading i s probably the most v a l u a b l e formative i n f l u e n c e on a w r i t e r . Sometimes the i n f l u e n c e i s d i r e c t , as when there i s a c o n s c i o u s , d e l i b e r a t e i m i t a t i o n of an admired author. More o f t e n , i t i s i n d i r e c t , c a s u a l , cumulative. J u s t as we u n c o n s c i o u s l y p i c k up e x p r e s s i o n s and modes of e x p r e s s i o n from those we t a l k t o , so we absorb rhythms, turns of phrases, and s y n t a c t i c p a t t e r n s from our r e a d i n g . ( P e r r i n and E b b i t t 1972, p. 26) More important, from an academic p o i n t of view, the reading of t e x t draws the reader out of the context of a p e r s o n a l i z e d l i f e experience i n t o broader p e r s p e c t i v e s which draw on the powers of i m a g i n a t i o n . I t i s t h i s a b i l i t y to enter i n t o a b s t r a c t experience that i s most valued i n the context of the s c h o o l environment - p a r t i c u l a r l y the a b i l i t y to o b j e c t i f y e x p e r i e n c e . Thus, while e a r l y reading and w r i t i n g a c t i v i t i e s might be e x p r e s s i v e , i t i s the aim of the c u r r i c u l u m to draw students i n t o more d e - c o n t e x t u a l i z e d .genres of d i s c o u r s e such as ( e x p o s i t o r y ) academic reading, w r i t i n g and d i s c u s s i o n . By the time a student has completed secondary s c h o o l , s/he i s expected to be a b l e to read impersonal t e x t m a t e r i a l s and present l o g i c a l , o b j e c t i v e , defended arguments or t h e o r i e s i n both spoken and w r i t t e n modes (B.C. C u r r i c u l u m Guide f o r E n g l i s h 8 - 12, 1978). 37 Oral and W r i t t e n Discourse: The Co g n i t i v e R e l a t i o n s h i p The r e l a t i o n s h i p between thought, speech and the w r i t t e n mode of d i s c o u r s e has i n t e r e s t e d language t h e o r i s t s and p s y c h o l o g i s t s a l i k e . One of the e a r l i e s t i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of t h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p was conducted by Russian p s y c h o l o g i s t L.S. Vygotsky i n the e a r l y 1930s. Vygotsky took the p o s i t i o n t h a t while c h i l d r e n a c q u i r e d spoken language through n a t u r a l processes, they were taught w r i t t e n language through ' a r t i f i c i a l t r a i n i n g ' that focused on mechanics and subsumed i t s f u n c t i o n as a l i v i n g form of language. He argued that w r i t i n g was d i f f i c u l t not on l y because i t r e q u i r e d e x p e r t i s e i n complex motor s k i l l s but that i t a l s o was more c o g n i t i v e l y demanding than speech. W r i t i n g ... i s a p a r t i c u l a r system of symbols and sign s whose mastery h e r a l d s a c r i t i c a l t u r n i n g - p o i n t in the e n t i r e c u l t u r a l development of the c h i l d . . . . A f e a t u r e of t h i s system i s that i t i s second-order symbolism which g r a d u a l l y becomes d i r e c t symbolism. T h i s means that w r i t t e n language c o n s i s t s of a system of signs that d esignate the sounds and words of spoken language, which i n t u r n , are sig n s f o r r e a l e n t i t i e s and r e l a t i o n s . G r a d u a l l y t h i s i n t e r m e d i a t e l i n k , spoken language, d i s a p p e a r s , and w r i t t e n language i s converted i n t o a system of sig n s that d i r e c t l y symbolize the e n t i t i e s and r e l a t i o n s between them. I t seems c l e a r that mastery of such a complex s i g n system cannot be accomplished i n a p u r e l y mechanical and e x t e r n a l manner; r a t h e r i t i s the c u l m i n a t i o n of a long process of development of complex b e h a v i o r a l f u n c t i o n s i n the c h i l d (Vygotsky 1978 ed., p. 106). The d i f f e r e n c e s between speaking and w r i t i n g were thus c o n s i d e r e d by Vygotsky to be developmental i n nature. He 38 argued that as the mechanics of w r i t i n g became automatic, thought was more e a s i l y expressed through the w r i t t e n medium without spoken language as an intermediary mode of e x p r e s s i o n . Recent r e s e a r c h supports Vygotsky's theory. Dyson (1983) found that young w r i t e r s use r e f l e c t i v e t a l k to formulate t h e i r messages, determine and d e s c r i b e the graphic encoding of t h e i r messages and to decode t h e i r w r i t t e n messages f o r o t h e r s . In w r i t i n g , the c h i l d b u i l d s on the f i r s t o c c u r r i n g symbolizing processes — t a l k , dramatic and imagin a t i v e p l a y , c o n s t r u c t i v e a c t i v i t i e s , and a r t — and then begins the more a b s t r a c t symbolizing process of w r i t i n g , the sy m b o l i z a t i o n process which, more p o w e r f u l l y than a l l the oth e r s , l i b e r a t e s c h i l d r e n from the here-and-now world i n t o the world of p o s s i b i l i t y (Dyson 1983, p. 23). i n v e s t i g a t i o n s conducted by James B r i t t o n and others i n England (1975) a l s o supports Vygotsky's t h e o r i e s about the r e l a t i o n s h i p between spoken and w r i t t e n language. B r i t t o n ' s study of over 2,000 p i e c e s of w r i t i n g by students aged 11 -18 i l l u s t r a t e s t h a t e x p r e s s i v e language p r o v i d e s a l i n k between the spoken and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e and i s the genre that beginning w r i t e r s f i n d e a s i e s t to w r i t e ( B r i t t o n el al . , 1975, p. 11). B r i t t o n t h e o r i z e s that t h i s p e r s o n a l i z e d form of d i s c o u r s e p r o v i d e s the t r a n s i t i o n from o r a l modes of d i s c o u r s e to more a b s t r a c t t r a n s a c t i o n a l ( e s s a y i s t ) and p o e t i c ( l i t e r a r y ) forms of d i s c o u r s e which evolve as l i n g u i s t i c resources and c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g powers develop. 39 The w r i t i n g of young c h i l d r e n i s o f t e n very l i k e w r i t t e n down speech, and some w r i t i n g s by mature w r i t e r s a l s o have e x p r e s s i v e f e a t u r e s that make them seem nearer to speech than to w r i t i n g . C l e a r l y the degree of d i f f e r e n c e between speech and w r i t i n g w i l l vary a great d e a l , p a r t l y a c c o r d i n g to the demands of the s i t u a t i o n ( c o n t r a s t a per s o n a l l e t t e r , f o r i n s t a n c e , with a h i s t o r y essay or a s o c i o l o g i c a l a r t i c l e ) , and p a r t l y a c c o r d i n g to s o c i a l conventions and the l e v e l of s o p h i s t i c a t i o n or pers o n a l t a s t e of the w r i t e r . E x p r e s s i v e language i n t e r e s t e d us p a r t i c u l a r l y both because i t represented some o v e r l a p between speech and w r i t i n g , and because, looked at developmentally, i t seemed to be the mode in which young c h i l d r e n c h i e f l y w r i t e . I t s r e l a t i o n s h i p to t h i n k i n g , moreover, seems p a r t i c u l a r l y d i r e c t and t h i s suggests i t s importance as a mode of l e a r n i n g at any stage. I t appears to be the means by which the new i s t e n t a t i v e l y e x p l o r e d , thoughts are h a l f u t t e r e d , a t t i t u d e s h a l f expressed ( B r i t t o n et al . , 1975, p. 11). The s u c c e s s f u l t e a c h i n g of black ghetto t e a c h e r s , Herbert Kohl and George Dennison, i s evidence of the value of c h i l d r e n ' s e x p r e s s i v e language. The v i t a l i t y of these p u p i l s ' p e r s o n a l i z e d w r i t i n g s i l l u s t r a t e s the v a l i d i t y of the t h e o r e t i c a l premises of B r i t t o n and others (Dennison 1969; Kohl 1967). S y l v i a Ashton-Warner's well-known success with Maori c h i l d r e n was a l s o based on p r i n c i p l e s of l i t e r a c y i n s t r u c t i o n t h a t drew on c h i l d r e n ' s own language resources and l i f e e xperiences as a b a s i s f o r e x t e n s i o n . C h i l d r e n ' s own language and shared experiences were recorded by the teacher as the means of i n t r o d u c i n g the c h i l d r e n to p r i n t (Ashton-Warner 1963). James M o f f e t t ' s (1968) t h e o r e t i c a l 'universe of d i s c o u r s e ' p r o v i d e d the foundation from which B r i t t o n developed h i s notions of language development and the 40 a c q u i s i t i o n of l i t e r a c y . M o f f e t t a l s o argued that c h i l d r e n should be int r o d u c e d to w r i t i n g through e x p r e s s i v e genres and that they should be encouraged to w r i t e from p e r s o n a l experience with someone they know as t h e i r intended audience. M o f f e t t ' s 'universe of d i s c o u r s e ' spans an 'I-you' (speaker/writer-audience) r e l a t i o n s h i p with an ' I - i t ' ( s p e a k e r / w r i t e r - t o p i c ) r e l a t i o n s h i p . The language of community l i v i n g i s p r i m a r i l y concerned with i n t e r p e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n s h i p ; the language of academic d i s c o u r s e i s p r i m a r i l y concerned with t o p i c . Between these two extremes are many dimensions which b r i n g t o p i c and audience i n t o v a r y i n g forms of r e l a t i o n s h i p . M o f f e t t ' s schematic r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of "the whole spectrum of d i s c o u r s e " i s a h i e r a r c h y of l e v e l s of a b s t r a c t i o n that are determined by the r e l a t i v e d i s t a n c e between the s p e a k e r / w r i t e r , and l i s t e n e r / r e a d e r as w e l l as the d i s t a n c e between the speaker/ w r i t e r and the t o p i c of the d i s c o u r s e (see Table 2 . 1 ) . 4 1 Table 2 . 1 : M o f f e t t ' s Spectrum of Disc o u r s e I n t e r i o r Dialogue ( e g o c e n t r i c speech) V o c a l Dialogue ( s o c i a l i z e d speech) Correspondence Personal J o u r n a l Autobiography Memoir Biography C h r o n i c l e H i s t o r y Sc ience Metaphysics Recording, the drama of what i s happening PLAYS Reporting, the n a r r a t i v e of what happened. G e n e r a l i z i n g , the e x p o s i t i o n of what happens. T h e o r i z i n g , the argumentation of what w i l l , may happen. FICTION 0 The i d e a t i o n a l or r e f e r e n t i a l ( t o p i c a l ) purposes of the d i s c o u r s e i n t e r a c t with the r h e t o r i c a l (audience) demands. Thus, a p i e c e of n a r r a t i v e f i c t i o n might be w r i t t e n i n a h i g h l y p e r s o n a l i z e d manner although the audience i s not i n the company of the author. A p h i l o s o p h i c a l t r e a t i s e i s l i k e l y to be presented i n a detached mode d e s p i t e the presence of an audience. M o f f e t t ' s t h e o r e t i c a l premise i s that as c h i l d r e n ' s c o g n i t i v e and l i n g u i s t i c r e sources develop, they become a b l e to enter i n t o v a r i e d p e r s p e c t i v e s of person, time, and p l a c e . They simultaneously develop the 42 conceptual powers to w r i t e to an unknown audience and t h i n k , speak and w r i t e i n a n a l y t i c a l ways about a b s t r a c t or d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d t o p i c s . T h i s developmental p r o g r e s s i o n of d i s t a n c i n g between the speaker/writer and l i s t e n e r / r e a d e r , ( r e f l e c t i o n / c o n v e r s a t i o n / c o r r e s p o n d e n c e / p u b l i c a t i o n ) and the d i s t a n c i n g between the s p e a k e r / w r i t e r and the t o p i c (drama/narrative/ exposition/argumentation) i s w e l l d e s c r i b e d by Mohan (1986) in r e f e r e n c e to M o f f e t t ' s t h e o r e t i c a l model. . . . At the k i n d e r g a r t e n to t h i r d grade l e v e l some of the forms of d i s c o u r s e p r a c t i c e d a r e : a c t i n g out s t o r i e s , show and t e l l , w r i t i n g c a p t i o n s , i n f o r m a l d i s c u s s i o n s . Some at the t e n t h to t h i r t e e n t h grade l e v e l a r e : i n t e r v i e w s , reportage, r e s e a r c h , g e n e r a l i z a t i o n , and theory. Show and t e l l , such as a boy showing h i s classmates a s h e l l he c o l l e c t e d from the beach i s f a c e - t o - f a c e and c o n v e r s a t i o n a l , and somewhere between drama and n a r r a t i v e . By c o n t r a s t , a r e s e a r c h r e p o r t w r i t t e n f o r a general audience would be between correspondence and p u b l i c a t i o n , and i n v o l v e e x p o s i t i o n and argumentation . . . The c o n t r a s t between show and t e l l and the r e s e a r c h paper . . . shows a sequence of growth . . . While the show and t e l l i s a short i n f o r m a l chat, b l e n d i n g f a c t and o p i n i o n , fun and s e r i o u s n e s s , the r e s e a r c h paper, l i k e other forms of academic d i s c o u r s e , i s a s u s t a i n e d attempt at a s p e c i f i c purpose. I t must be r e l e v a n t , m a r s h a l l evidence f o r c l a i m s made, and be c l e a r l y d i f f e r e n t i a t e d from other forms of d i s c o u r s e l i k e i m a g i n a t i v e f i c t i o n . (Mohan 1986, pp. 110-111). Research conducted by H i d i and H i l d y a r d (1983) i n d i c a t e s that c h i l d r e n i n both grades three and f i v e were abl e to compose b e t t e r formed n a r r a t i v e s than supported o p i n i o n s , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . T h e i r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of t h i s f i n d i n g r e f l e c t s the t h e o r e t i c a l premises of B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia (1982) who argue that c h i l d r e n ' s w r i t i n g 43 competencies are r e l a t e d to t h e i r knowledge of genre-s p e c i f i c o r g a n i z a t i o n a l s t r a t e g i e s ( d i s c o u r s e schema). H i d i and H i l d y a r d conclude that whereas the c h i l d r e n had r e l a t i v e l y well-developed schema f o r n a r r a t i v e s , t h e i r schema f o r arguments was l e s s w e l l developed, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . Argument has been found to be more d i f f i c u l t f o r students than n a r r a t i v e throughout t h e i r s c h o o l i n g ( B r i t t o n 1975; Crowhurst 1980; Shaughnessy 1977). Developmental theory i s supported by r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s that argument r e q u i r e s more complex (mature) s y n t a c t i c a l s t r u c t u r e s than n a r r a t i v e (Crowhurst and Piche 1979; Crowhurst 1980). Applebee's (1981) i n v e s t i g a t i o n of the w r i t i n g tasks presented to grades 9 and 11 students i n two c o n t r a s t i n g secondary schools r e v e a l e d that l i t t l e classroom time was given to the composition of s u s t a i n e d w r i t i n g and that even l e s s time was given to d e v e l o p i n g t h e o r e t i c a l arguments i n w r i t i n g . F i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e d that while 44 percent of observed l e s s o n times i n s i x major s u b j e c t areas i n v o l v e d w r i t i n g , "only 3 percent of l e s s o n time was devoted to w r i t i n g that r e q u i r e d students to produce at l e a s t a paragraph of coherent te x t . . . Homework assignments were s i m i l a r . . . only 3 percent asked f o r w r i t i n g of at l e a s t a paragraph i n l e n g t h " (Applebee 1981, p. 30). Supplementary f i n d i n g s from Applebee's n a t i o n a l q u e s t i o n n a i r e survey of 754 " b e t t e r teachers and c l a s s e s " ( s t r a t i f i e d by school s i z e and m e t r o p o l i t a n s t a t u s ) a l s o i n d i c a t e d that 44 paragraph-length w r i t i n g accounted f o r only 27 percent of c l a s s time i n grade 9 and 36 percent i n grade 11. Classroom w r i t i n g was p r i m a r i l y a s s i g n e d f o r the purposes of n o t e - t a k i n g and short-answer responses. Whatever t h e i r s p e c i f i c views of the purposes of a s k i n g students to w r i t e , teachers i n a l l groups emphasized i n f o r m a t i o n a l w r i t i n g ; r e p o r t i n g on p a r t i c u l a r events, summarizing a s e r i e s of p a r t i c u l a r events, a n a l y z i n g , and t h e o r i z i n g . . . i n c l u d i n g making hypotheses and drawing deductions from them, represented the h i g h e s t l e v e l of a b s t r a c t i o n i n the v a r i o u s types of w r i t i n g . Although a s u b s t a n t i a l p r o p o r t i o n of the teachers r e p o r t e d " f r e q u e n t l y " asking students to w r i t e at t h i s l e v e l of a b s t r a c t i o n , the w r i t i n g that r e s u l t e d r a r e l y moved beyond a n a l y s i s . Only 3 percent of the samples were c a t e g o r i z e d as t h e o r i z i n g (Applebee 1981, pp. 66, 42). Applebee's f i n d i n g s suggest that even " b e t t e r " U.S. secondary students have been p o o r l y prepared f o r the academic w r i t i n g tasks that are expected of students at the post-secondary l e v e l of e d u c a t i o n . He argues that students are taught to use w r i t i n g as an instrument f o r r e c o r d i n g i n f o r m a t i o n and f o r assessment purposes but they are not taught to use w r i t i n g to develop a n a l y t i c a l and t h e o r e t i c a l thought — that students need to be taught t h a t w r i t i n g i s a v a l u a b l e t o o l f o r a r r i v i n g at a c r i t i c a l understanding of s u b j e c t matter. T h i s c o n t e n t i o n has motivated r i c h o b s e r v a t i o n a l r e s e a r c h by ' w r i t i n g to l e a r n ' t h e o r i s t s (Barr 1982; Healy 1984). Applebee's f i n d i n g s are r e f l e c t e d i n the r e s u l t s of the 1984 U.S. N a t i o n a l Assessment of E d u c a t i o n a l Progress (NAEP). The m a j o r i t y of the 55,000 student sample i n grades 45 4, 8, and 11 were assessed to perform at a minimal l e v e l of w r i t i n g competency only when w r i t i n g essays about p e r s o n a l e x p e r i e n c e s . Although over 80% of both grades 8 and 11 students demonstrated competency on tasks r e q u i r i n g a n a l y t i c a l s k i l l s , the m a j o r i t y of these students were unable to combine t h e i r a n a l y t i c a l s k i l l s with the o r g a n i z a t i o n a l s k i l l s r e q u i r e d f o r a n a l y t i c a l w r i t i n g . For example, students had d i f f i c u l t y s u p p o r t i n g t h e i r views with evidence. Students' w r i t i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s were found to be extended to s t o r y w r i t i n g as w e l l . Fewer than one-half of grade 11, o n e - t h i r d of grade 8 and one-tenth of grade 4 students were assessed to have adequate competency i n s t o r y w r i t i n g (Phi D e l t a Kappan February 1987, p. 484). These f i n d i n g s are not u n l i k e the f i n d i n g s of p r e v i o u s NAEP assessments of students' w r i t i n g (Brown 1981, p. 31-38). These f i n d i n g s are a l s o s i m i l a r to those of the 1978 B.C. W r i t i n g Assessment conducted with 9,000 students i n grades 4, 8, and 12. Although a s l i g h t l y higher percentage of students at both grades 8 and 12 were assessed as having b a s i c competency or b e t t e r i n e x p o s i t o r y w r i t i n g (opinion) than n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g , these f i n d i n g s may r e f l e c t the students' o p t i o n to s e l e c t the w r i t i n g task and they may r e f l e c t the b i a s e s of the assessment p a n e l . At the grade 8 l e v e l a s s e s s o r s were somewhat more l e n i e n t with the e x p o s i t o r y samples as i t was c o n s i d e r e d that n a r r a t i v e ought to be e a s i e r s i n c e i t had been taught s i n c e grade 1. At the grade 12 l e v e l , a s s e s s o r s r e v e r s e d t h i s view arguing that 46 a f t e r some years of i n s t r u c t i o n i n e x p o s i t o r y w r i t i n g , " s k i l l f u l e x p o s i t i o n i s e a s i e r f o r students to l e a r n than s k i l l f u l n a r r a t i o n " (Conry and Rodgers 1978 p. 53). Grade 12 students performed b e t t e r on the e x p o s i t o r y tasks than the n a r r a t i v e tasks but the margin was not as wide as at the grade 8 l e v e l . And o v e r a l l , fewer grade 12 students were c o n s i d e r e d to have a c q u i r e d b a s i c competency in e i t h e r e x p o s i t o r y or n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g . At grade 12, 29% were c o n s i d e r e d to have b a s i c competency i n e x p o s i t o r y w r i t i n g and 25% were c o n s i d e r e d to have b a s i c competency i n n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g . At grade 8, 44% were c o n s i d e r e d to have b a s i c competency i n e x p o s i t o r y w r i t i n g and 33% were c o n s i d e r e d to have b a s i c competency in n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g . Although the r e s e a r c h team questioned the assessment panel's r a t i o n a l e concerning the r e l a t i v e d i f f i c u l t i e s of the genres, i t was evident that the m a j o r i t y of B.C. students had d i f f i c u l t y with w r i t i n g c o h e s i v e d i s c o u r s e , whether in the n a r r a t i v e or e x p o s i t o r y genre. As with the U.S. students, the panel noted that these had d i f f i c u l t y o r g a n i z i n g t h e i r w r i t i n g and p r e s e n t i n g d e t a i l , whether d e t a i l to support t h e i r o p i n i o n i n e x p o s i t o r y w r i t i n g or d e s c r i p t i v e d e t a i l i n t h e i r n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g . As i n the U.S. s t u d i e s , students had l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y with p r o o f r e a d i n g s k i l l s such as s p e l l i n g and p u n c t u a t i o n . The B.C. Assessment recommendations s t r e s s e d that students needed more time l e a r n i n g to compose s u s t a i n e d p i e c e s of w r i t i n g , and they needed more i n s t r u c t i o n i n 47 e x p o s i t o r y w r i t i n g . They concluded that i t appeared that too much time was spent t e a c h i n g p r o o f r e a d i n g s k i l l s such as s p e l l i n g and p u n c t u a t i o n . The U.S. Assessment recommendations are s i m i l a r . The a r t of s u c c e s s f u l t e a c h i n g of w r i t i n g i n v o l v e s h e l p i n g students t h i n k about what to do and how to do i t as they are engaged i n the process of w r i t i n g — and students need t h i s kind of support i n a l l t h e i r s u b j e c t s , each and every day .... (as quoted i n Phi D e l t a Kappan February 1987, p. 484) Mina Shaughnessy's a n a l y s i s of w r i t i n g samples drawn from Open Admissions E n g l i s h placement examinations at New York C i t y C o l l e g e i l l u s t r a t e s the d i f f i c u l t i e s which her b a s i c ( u n s k i l l e d ) w r i t i n g students experience i n attempting to produce academic arguments. [B a s i c w r i t i n g ] students are o f t e n s a i d to be "concrete" r a t h e r than " a b s t r a c t " t h i n k e r s , or to l a c k " c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g " powers. What t h e i r teachers seem to mean by such diagnoses i s that the students l a c k the vocabulary and h a b i t s of g e n e r a l i z a t i o n that are a s s o c i a t e d with academic w r i t i n g . These h a b i t s r e q u i r e that w r i t e r s not only make a b s t r a c t statements in a language that has been e s p e c i a l l y developed to extend the ladder of a b s t r a c t i o n beyond c o n v e n t i o n a l needs but that they be able to move back and f o r t h between l e v e l s of g e n e r a l i z a t i o n i n the i n t e r e s t of s u p p o r t i n g t h e i r a b s t r a c t statements ... The problem i n most BW papers l i e s i n the absence of movement between a b s t r a c t and c o n c r e t e statements. Papers tend to c o n t a i n e i t h e r cases or g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s but not both. (Shaughnessy 1977, p. 240) M o f f e t t d e s c r i b e s t h i s ladder of a b s t r a c t i o n as a simultaneous i n t e r a c t i o n of s p e a k e r / t o p i c / a u d i e n c e or w r i t e r / t o p i c / r e a d e r . As t o p i c s become more a b s t r a c t and d i s t a n t from experience and as the audience becomes l e s s f a m i l i a r and removed i n time and p l a c e , l i n g u i s t i c demands 48 become more complex. Academic d i s c o u r s e which r e q u i r e s t h e o r e t i c a l d i s c u s s i o n and l o g i c a l argumentation i s g e n e r a l l y impersonal i n t o p i c and audience and thus r e q u i r e s more a b s t r a c t c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n . At the same time, the academic speaker or w r i t e r must have a broad general knowledge base from which to p r o v i d e c o n c r e t e support and i l l u s t r a t i o n (Langer 1984). I t i s suggested by Applebee, i n agreement with B r i t t o n (1975), that e x p r e s s i v e language r a t h e r than f o r m a l i z e d language i s most s u i t e d to the purposes of a c q u i r i n g the s k i l l s of a b s t r a c t a n a l y t i c a l thought r e q u i r e d of t h e o r e t i c a l argument. Once a student has developed the t h i n k i n g s k i l l s r e q u i r e d of v a r i e d forms of academic d i s c o u r s e , more f o r m a l i z e d language s t r u c t u r e s can be developed. Thus the purpose of the d i s c o u r s e i s i s o l a t e d from the form of the d i s c o u r s e with the purpose r e c e i v i n g primary c o n s i d e r a t i o n . Other w r i t i n g t h e o r i s t s suggest that i t i s of b e n e f i t to the purpose of the d i s c o u r s e f o r a student to have the a i d of the form (schema) i n d eveloping academic ( e x p o s i t o r y ) e s s a y i s t s k i l l s ( B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia 1982). Beginning w r i t e r s o f t e n have d i f f i c u l t y moving beyond the e g o c e n t r i c i t y of t h e i r own experience to be a b l e to enter the more a b s t r a c t g e n e r a l i z e d mode of d i s c u s s i o n expected i n both o r a l and w r i t t e n academic d i s c o u r s e ( P e r l 1980; L u n s f o r d 1978). Andrea Lunsford's a n a l y s i s of essay samples drawn from a u n i v e r s i t y E n g l i s h Placement Test (1980) i l l u s t r a t e s the e g o - c e n t r i c i t y of b a s i c w r i t e r s and 49 t h e i r l i m i t e d achievements i n w r i t i n g academic d i s c o u r s e which r e q u i r e s a d i s t a n c e d v o i c e and p e r s p e c t i v e . L u n s f o r d noted that the t o p i c "Who i s the most memorable person you have known?" e l i c i t e d q u i t e d i f f e r e n t responses from the b a s i c w r i t e r s and the more s k i l l e d w r i t e r s . A l l these b a s i c w r i t e r s ... focused p r i m a r i l y on themselves r a t h e r than the memorable person ... the b a s i c w r i t e r s merge with the t o p i c , they cannot d i s t a n c e themselves i n order to gain a v a r i e t y of p e r s p e c t i v e s on that t o p i c ... The more s k i l l e d w r i t e r s , on the other hand, focused t h e i r a t t e n t i o n not on themselves but on the memorable person These w r i t e r s , then, seem capable of d i s t a n c i n g themselves from the person they d e s c r i b e . Moreover, they see the person as the embodiment of g e n e r a l i z e d t r a i t s emulable by a l l . F i n a l l y , they do not focus on t h e i r own l o n e l i n e s s and f e a r , as d i d the m a j o r i t y of b a s i c w r i t e r s (Lunsford 1980, p. 281). For many students, w r i t i n g i s the most d i f f i c u l t task that they face i n t h e i r s c h o o l i n g experience. The reasons f o r t h i s are m a n i f o l d - some of these reasons may r e f l e c t t e a c h e r s ' l i m i t e d a p p r e c i a t i o n of the myriad of p h y s i c a l and c o g n i t i v e demands imposed by the process of w r i t i n g . Other reasons r e f l e c t the i n t r i n s i c nature of w r i t i n g i t s e l f - i t s complex s t r u c t u r a l form and the ends i t i s designed to serve. Although w r i t i n g i s a mode of communication, i t s audience i s o f t e n i l l - d e f i n e d and i t s t o p i c may be so a b s t r a c t as to be disconnected from any p h y s i c a l or s o c i a l r e a l i t y . T h i s d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d c h a r a c t e r of w r i t i n g i s c o n s i d e r e d to present the most c h a l l e n g e to beginning w r i t e r s . I t i s even more c h a l l e n g i n g to those students who do not use t h i s form of o r a l d i s c o u r s e i n t h e i r homes. 50 Denis Lawton's comparative study of the o r a l - w r i t t e n language of working-class and m i d d l e - c l a s s secondary students i l l u s t r a t e s t h i s . The most obvious d i f f e r e n c e between the groups was that at each age l e v e l the m i d d l e - c l a s s boys wrote s i g n i f i c a n t l y longer essays in the h a l f - h o u r p e r i o d ... The most l i k e l y e x p l a n a t i o n of these d i f f e r e n c e s i n output i s that f o r the R e s t r i c t e d Code user, e x p r e s s i o n of ideas i n w r i t i n g , e s p e c i a l l y i n the formal medium of an essay, i s more l i k e an act of t r a n s l a t i o n than i s the w r i t t e n e x p r e s s i o n of m i d d l e - c l a s s boys. I t i s probably that the v e r b a l p l a n n i n g r e q u i r e d f o r w r i t i n g i s much c l o s e r to the v e r b a l p l a n n i n g of the E l a b o r a t e d Code than the simpler v e r b a l p l a n n i n g processes a s s o c i a t e d with R e s t r i c t e d Code ... those o c c a s i o n s when working c l a s s boys wrote f a i r l y long essays t h e i r w r i t t e n s t y l e was much c l o s e r to speech, whereas the s h o r t e s t working c l a s s essays were u n s u c c e s s f u l attempts at a b s t r a c t impersonal w r i t i n g . (Lawton 1968, pp. 105-106). Lawton's study i n d i c a t e d that s o c i a l c l a s s d i f f e r e n c e s i n use of language a p p l i e d both to w r i t t e n work as w e l l as speech and that while these d i f f e r e n c e s were evident i n a comparison of the n a r r a t i v e - d e s c r i p t i v e essays w r i t t e n by the two groups, the d i f f e r e n c e s were g r e a t e r on essay t o p i c s which encouraged more a b s t r a c t w r i t i n g . Lawton's workin g - c l a s s s u b j e c t s were s i m i l a r to many of the b a s i c w r i t e r s d e s c r i b e d by Shaughnessy i n both t h e i r o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . They would focus on unique, concrete examples and f a i l to d e r i v e g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s . D e s p i t e the d i f f i c u l t i e s experienced by many students, w r i t i n g i s c o n s i d e r e d to be a v i t a l means of c o g n i t i v e development. I t a l l o w s f o r the kind of c r i t i c a l r e f l e c t i o n t h a t enables a student to become aware of the s t a t e of t h e i r 51 own knowledge and understanding. Whereas t e c h n o l o g i c a l developments such as telephones and t e l e v i s i o n and other e l e c t r o n i c media have p r o v i d e d expedient means f o r r e c e i v i n g i n f o r m a t i o n , they are unable to r e p l a c e w r i t i n g as a means f o r time-consuming a n a l y t i c a l thought. Although computers are programmed to conduct s o p h i s t i c a t e d a n a l y s e s , they r e l y on human i n t e l l i g e n c e to develop t h e i r programs and determine t h e i r uses. Computers can a i d i n t h i s process of c r i t i c a l thought but at the same time the development of t h e i r p o t e n t i a l s r e q u i r e s ever more s o p h i s t i c a t e d t h i n k i n g on the p a r t of us a l l , not j u s t i t s programmers. E s s a y i s t w r i t i n g i s one h i s t o r i c a l l y - p r o v e n means of developing s o p h i s t i c a t e d thought. When people read and l i s t e n , they take i n and process i n f o r m a t i o n . When they w r i t e , they must analyze and s y n t h e s i z e i n f o r m a t i o n . . . In t h i s way, w r i t i n g i s an important t o o l of r e a l l e a r n i n g - that which i n c l u d e s c r i t i c a l t h i n k i n g and d i s c o v e r y of what we know and b e l i e v e (Whiteman and H a l l 1981, p. 2). O r a l and Written Discourse: S t r u c t u r a l Comparisons While there i s c o n s i d e r a b l e debate r e g a r d i n g the nature of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between spoken and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , there i s agreement that such a r e l a t i o n s h i p e x i s t s . S t r u c t u r a l comparisons suggest that o r a l d i s c o u r s e shares common grammatical f e a t u r e s with w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e but that the two modes of exp r e s s i o n are a l s o unique i n t h e i r s t r u c t u r a l forms. O r a l d i s c o u r s e i s g e n e r a l l y c o n s i d e r e d to be l e s s formal than w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e and i t i s enhanced by 52 s u b t l e t i e s of v o c a l e x p r e s s i o n (prosody) as w e l l as body language ( k i n e s i s ) , when communicants share v i s u a l f i e l d s . W r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e r e l i e s upon s y n t a c t i c e l a b o r a t i o n and e x p l i c i t c h o i c e s of l e x i c a l items i n order to c l e a r l y communicate intended meanings to an absent audience. David R. Olson d e l i n e a t e s h i s view of these d i f f e r e n c e s . Ordinary c o n v e r s a t i o n a l speech, e s p e c i a l l y c h i l d r e n ' s speech, r e l i e s f o r i t s comprehension on a wide range of i n f o r m a t i o n beyond what i s e x p l i c i t l y marked i n the language ... Sentences i n c o n v e r s a t i o n a l c o n t e x t s ... are i n t e r p r e t e d i n terms of the f o l l o w i n g : agreed-upon l e x i c a l and s y n t a c t i c conventions; a shared knowledge of events and a p r e f e r r e d way of i n t e r p r e t i n g them; a shared p e r c e p t u a l context; and agreed-upon p r o s o d i c f e a t u r e s and p a r a l i n g u i s t i c conventions. W r i t t e n language can have no recourse to shared context, p r o s o d i c f e a t u r e s , or p a r a l i n g u i s t i c conventions since the preserved sentences have to be understood in c o n t e x t s other than those i n which they were w r i t t e n . The comprehension of such t e x t s r e q u i r e s agreed-upon l i n g u i s t i c conventions, a shared knowledge of the world, and a p r e f e r r e d way of i n t e r p r e t i n g events (Olson 1977, p. 272). Chafe's (1982) comparisons of the o r a l and w r i t t e n language of 14 academic i n s t r u c t o r s and students was s u p p o r t i v e of the kinds of s t r u c t u r a l d i f f e r e n c e s g e n e r a l l y d i s c u s s e d i n the l i t e r a t u r e . Chafe argued that w r i t t e n language was more detached from audience and that i t had more i n t e g r a t i v e q u a l i t i e s than spoken language as w r i t e r s had more time "to mold a s u c c e s s i o n of ideas i n t o a more complex, coherent, i n t e g r a t e d whole" (p. 37). However, the language samples which Chafe s e l e c t e d f o r h i s a n a l y s i s were d e l i b e r a t e l y "maximally d i f f e r e n t i a t e d " i n order to focus on exposing d i f f e r e n c e s between o r a l and w r i t t e n language: 5 3 i n f o r m a l o r a l c o n v e r s a t i o n and formal academic w r i t i n g . In h i s a n a l y s i s of r i t u a l o r a l p r e s e n t a t i o n s of the Seneca, Chafe suggests that t h i s type of performance t e x t a l s o has elements of detachment from audience and i n t e g r a t i v e ' l i t e r a r y ' q u a l i t i e s . Chafe might have a r r i v e d at s i m i l a r statements about the o r a l and w r i t t e n language of h i s academic sample i f h i s comparisons had been made with p o l i s h e d academic w r i t i n g and rehearsed academic l e c t u r e s . Deborah Tannen (1982) demonstrated t h a t s t r u c t u r a l comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e must be a t t e n t i v e to the genre of the d i s c o u r s e . Tannen's r e s e a r c h i n d i c a t e d that there are s i g n i f i c a n t s i m i l a r i t i e s between the two modes when the genre i s h e l d c o n s t a n t . The d i f f e r e n c e between f e a t u r e s of language which d i s t i n g u i s h d i s c o u r s e types r e f l e c t s not only - and not mainly - spoken v s . w r i t t e n mode, but rather genre and r e l a t e d r e g i s t e r , growing out of communicative goals and context ... A short s t o r y , l i k e other genres of i m a g i n a t i v e l i t e r a t u r e , has as i t s goal not to convince the reader through l o g i c a l argument, but to move the reader e m o t i o n a l l y through a sense of involvement, with i t s p o i n t of view ... that i s why w r i t t e n i m a g i n a t i v e l i t e r a t u r e b u i l d s on and e l a b o r a t e s aspects of spoken language such as use of d e t a i l , d i r e c t q u o t a t i o n , sound and word r e p e t i t i o n , and s y n t a c t i c p a r a l l e l i s m . Often i t goes to great l e n g t h s to preserve the seemingly i n e f f i c i e n t f e a t u r e s of spontaneous speech such as h e s i t a t i o n s , r e p e t i t i o n of ide a s , and f i l l e r s , and to r e - c r e a t e e f f e c t s t h a t are accomplished i n speaking by p a r a l i n g u i s t i c c l u e s . (Tannen 1981, p. 18) . Comparative statements about the d i s t i n c t i o n s between o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e tend to r e f e r to t r a n s c r i p t i o n s of spontaneous c o n v e r s a t i o n a l speech i n process with completed academic manuscripts that have been t h o u g h t f u l l y composed and r e v i s e d d u r i n g a longer time span. 54 Because w r i t i n g can be more d e l i b e r a t e , because we can be more p r e c i s e and or g a n i z e d about what we have to say, and a l s o because we can have more time to be p r e c i s e and organized, w r i t t e n language i s g e n e r a l l y f a r more s t r u c t u r e d than speech. Texts are u s u a l l y more compact, more i n t e r n a l l y c o n s i s t e n t and more l o g i c a l and coherent i n the manner i n which they proceed from s t a r t to f i n i s h , with a r e l a t i v e absence of d i g r e s s i o n s , r e p e t i t i o n s , and f a l s e s t a r t s ... Speech i s l e s s demanding and should r e f l e c t that f a c t ; not onl y i s more i d i o s y n c r a c y allowed, i t i s expected. (Smith, 1982, pp. 70-71). G e n r e - c o n t r o l l e d comparisons of t r a n s c r i b e d spontaneous speech with c a r e f u l codings of observed w r i t i n g - i n - p r o c e s s p r o v i d e s more v a l i d comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n language as the pauses and mazes of spontaneous speech are a l s o evident i n f i r s t d r a f t w r i t i n g i n process ( P e r l 1978; Pianko 1977). L i k e w i s e , g e n r e - c o n t r o l l e d comparisons of r e v i s e d samples of w r i t i n g with rehearsed o r a l performance would provide more v a l i d i n f o r m a t i o n regarding the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the f u n c t i o n s and s t r u c t u r e s of o r a l and w r i t t e n language. The t r a n s i t i o n from o r a l to w r i t t e n language presents many c h a l l e n g e s to a l l students but t h i s t r a n s i t i o n p r e s e n t s a d d i t i o n a l c h a l l e n g e s to nonstandard speakers whose d i a l e c t s and p a t t e r n s of thought do not conform to the language s t r u c t u r e s and s t y l e s of s t a n d a r d i z e d w r i t i n g c onventions. Mina Shaughnessy's s t r u c t u r a l a n a l y s i s of the w r i t t e n academic d i s c o u r s e of her mature b a s i c w r i t i n g students i l l u s t r a t e s the many c h a l l e n g e s they f a c e . 55 Many s y n t a c t i c d i f f i c u l t i e s are rooted i n the d i f f e r e n c e s between w r i t i n g and speaking - i n the f a c t t h at w r i t i n g serves a d i f f e r e n t purpose from speech, that i t tends to e x p l o i t s y n t a c t i c p o s s i b i l i t i e s i n language that speech e i t h e r need not or cannot e x p l o i t , that i t demands c o o r d i n a t i o n of hand and eye th a t a speaker does not a u t o m a t i c a l l y c o n t r o l and that i n h i b i t the prod u c t i o n of grammatically sound sentences ... that i t i s c r e a t e d through a process whereby speech i s c r e a t e d , and f i n a l l y , t h a t i t removes the w r i t e r from the supports of d i a l o g u e and puts him on h i s own i n ways that even experienced w r i t e r s f i n d f o r m i d a b l e . (Shaughnessy 1977, p. 87). Shaughnessy noted that the w r i t i n g of these students l a c k e d a co h e s i v e g e n e r a l i z e d framework, "conceptual maps", w i t h i n which arguments and su p p o r t i v e evidence might be developed. The r h e t o r i c a l o r g a n i z a t i o n and s t y l e of t h e i r w r i t i n g r e f l e c t e d t h e i r b e l i e f that w r i t i n g was simply speech w r i t t e n down. At the same time, grammar and other s u r f a c e f e a t u r e s were a f f e c t e d by d i a l e c t i n t e r f e r e n c e and a la c k of knowledge about standard w r i t i n g conventions. Shaughnessy suggested that a systematic comparison of w r i t i n g samples and taped segments of o r a l language might pro v i d e v a l u a b l e i n s i g h t r e g a r d i n g the r e l a t i o n s h i p between students' d i f f i c u l t i e s with w r i t i n g and the s t r u c t u r e s and language res o u r c e s of t h e i r o r a l language. One of the f i r s t i n v e s t i g a t i o n s comparing the o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e of Basic W r i t e r s was conducted by Cayer and Sacks (1979). Four female and four male f i r s t year c o l l e g e students p a r t i c i p a t e d i n the study. Language samples were c o l l e c t e d from an o r a l d i s c u s s i o n ; w r i t i n g samples were composed on the same t o p i c a f t e r the 56 d i s c u s s i o n . F i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e d o v e r l a p of s y n t a c t i c usage and the content between o r a l and w r i t t e n samples. The authors suggest that while t h i s f i n d i n g may i n d i c a t e the students' o v e r - r e l i a n c e on o r a l language s t r a t e g i e s and s t r u c t u r a l elements i n t h e i r w r i t i n g e f f o r t s , i t was a l s o e v i d e n t that these students were i n p o s s e s s i o n of s y n t a c t i c s t r u c t u r e s necessary f o r e f f e c t i v e o r a l and w r i t t e n argument. F a r r and Janda (1985) conducted more recent case study i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the o r a l and w r i t t e n language of one c o l l e g e l e v e l Basic W r i t i n g student. T h e i r comparative samples i n c l u d e d the p e r s o n a l i z e d w r i t i n g of the student's d i a l o g u e j o u r n a l , samples of academic w r i t i n g from c l a s s assignments and an o r a l language sample i n which the student was i n f o r m a l l y i n t e r v i e w e d with q u e s t i o n s asking him to d e s c r i b e h i s c h i l d h o o d i n n e r - c i t y neighborhood and h i s move to a middle c l a s s neighborhood. Thus the data i n c l u d e d : o r a l d i a l o g u e , w r i t t e n d i a l o g u e , and w r i t t e n e x p o s i t o r y monologue. The a n a l y s e s of t h i s data i n d i c a t e d that t h i s student's academic w r i t i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s were somewhat a f f e c t e d by d i a l e c t f e a t u r e s at the s e n t e n c e - l e v e l of h i s w r i t t e n c o n s t r u c t i o n s . However, h i s g r e a t e r problems were r e l a t e d to an overconcern fo r a t t e n d i n g to form r a t h e r than c o n c e n t r a t i n g on c r e a t i n g and e x p r e s s i n g meaning. In t h i s case, the student's composing (or c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g ) e f f o r t s were thwarted r a t h e r than enhanced by s t r u c t u r a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s . D i a l e c t i s s u e s were secondary. 57 T h i s f i n d i n g supports the argument of a number of language t h e o r i s t s who maintain that nonstandard d i a l e c t f e a t u r e s r e c e i v e too much a t t e n t i o n . I t i s argued that a teacher's concern f o r the development of students' o r a l and w r i t t e n language ought to emphasize the development of a b i l i t y to share meanings, r a t h e r than t o be o v e r l y concerned about s u r f a c e f e a t u r e s such as d i a l e c t ( H a r t w e l l 1980; Shuy 1981; Toohey 1986). W r i t i n g i n s t r u c t i o n , f o r a l l students, ought to be broadly r h e t o r i c a l , s t r e s s i n g v o i c e , audience, and purpose, r a t h e r than narrowly grammatical, s t r e s s i n g s u r f a c e d e t a i l and i t s presumed connection with a spoken standard ( H a r t w e l l 1980, p. 114). These p o s i t i o n s r e f l e c t s i m i l a r arguments presented by t h e o r i s t s i n second language i n s t r u c t i o n (Mohan and Lo 1985; Zamel 1983). Others argue that d i a l e c t a l i s s u e s need to be addressed i n order f o r teachers to be ab l e to i s o l a t e w r i t i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s that are r e l a t e d to d i a l e c t . Wolfram et al. (1979) i n v e s t i g a t e d the i s s u e of d i a l e c t i n t e r f e r e n c e i n the w r i t i n g (and reading) of f o u r t h and s i x t h graders i n two New Mexico Native Indian communities. T h e i r a n a l y s i s i s o l a t e d a number of nonstandard f e a t u r e s i n the o r a l and w r i t t e n language of these students: i n c o n s i s t e n t verb tenses, ed and p l u r a l s absence, s e r i a l and absence, a r t i c l e absence, and o t h e r s . Our i n v e s t i g a t i o n of w r i t t e n composition i n the two Indian communities and a c o n t r o l m i d d l e - c l a s s Anglo community has i n d i c a t e d that a number of the 58 v a r i a t i o n s i n w r i t t e n form i n v o l v e more than a c c i d e n t a l e r r o r s or s t r a i g h t f o r w a r d gaps i n knowledge. I t i s q u i t e c l e a r that there i s a systematic v a r i a t i o n which i s more reasonably i n t e r p r e t e d as a r e f l e c t i o n of spoken language i n w r i t i n g (Wolfram et al., 1979, p. 387). The authors concluded that i t was important f o r teachers to d i s t i n g u i s h between ' e r r o r ' and d i a l e c t when a s s e s s i n g the w r i t i n g of the N a t ive Indian students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n the study. They argued that d i f f e r e n t t e a c h i n g s t r a t e g i e s c o u l d then be c a l l e d upon to address these d i s t i n c t concerns. An examination of the essay and examination w r i t i n g of approximately 100 Northwest American Indian c o l l e g e students l i k e w i s e r e v e a l e d a number of nonstandard d i a l e c t f e a t u r e s (Chessin and Auerbach 1982). The r e s e a r c h e r s noted that many of these nonstandard f e a t u r e s were the same as those e x h i b i t e d by Blacks and A s i a n s having d i f f i c u l t y with w r i t i n g Standard E n g l i s h : d e l e t i o n s of words and word endings, pronoun/antecedent agreement, pronoun case, a r t i c l e c o n f u s i o n , verb tense (to be verbs in p a r t i c u l a r ) , and syntax. They concluded that these students' w r i t i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s were due to a l a c k of experience with w r i t i n g process and u n f a m i l i a r i t y with Standard E n g l i s h . L i k e other i n e x p e r i e n c e d w r i t e r s , many Indian students wrote as though they were speaking. They plunged i n t o sentences, p i c k e d up and l o s t s t r u c t u r a l threads, and never c o n s i d e r e d r e v i s i n g what had been set down. U n f a m i l i a r i t y with p u n c t u a t i o n usage and sentence boundaries l e d to fragments, run-ons, and awkwardness (Chessin and Auerbach 1982, p. 180). 59 More recent r e s e a r c h conducted by Epes (1985) addresses both concerns of d i a l e c t i n t e r f e r e n c e i n s u r f a c e l e v e l c o n s t r u c t i o n s and the development of meaningful d i s c o u r s e . Epes d i s t i n g u i s h e s these concerns as encoding and composing s k i l l s . Encoding s k i l l s are d e f i n e d as " c o n t r o l l i n g the v i s u a l symbols which represent meaning on the page"; composing s k i l l s are d e f i n e d as " c o n t r o l l i n g meaning i n w r i t i n g " (p. 6). Epes' r e s e a r c h was conducted with twenty-six c o l l e g e age students; t h i r t e e n were i d e n t i f i e d as standard d i a l e c t speakers and t h i r t e e n were i d e n t i f i e d as nonstandard d i a l e c t speakers. Her f i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e d that "some of the best composers and c l e a r e s t t h i n k e r s . . . were among the poorest encoders, and v i c e v e r s a " (p. 14). At the same time, however, Epes found that the nonstandard speakers produced many more s u r f a c e e r r o r s than the standard speakers, and she argued that standard grammar i n s t r u c t i o n should be taught as a part of the students' l e a r n i n g about e d i t i n g and r e v i s i o n . She agreed with those who argue that students should focus t h e i r a t t e n t i o n on a r r i v i n g at meanings d u r i n g the composing p r o c e s s . Few i n v e s t i g a t i o n s concerned with the w r i t i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s experienced by c o l l e g e students address the w r i t i n g of Native Indian c o l l e g e students i n p a r t i c u l a r ( B a r t e l t 1982; Chessin and Auerbach 1982). However, the t h e o r i e s of Ron and Suzanne B.K. S c o l l o n r e f l e c t the same kinds of concerns that are addressed i n the research that has been conducted with Bas i c W r i t i n g students who speak 60 nonstandard d i a l e c t s . The S c o l l o n s argue that Native students must l e a r n both new grammatical s t r u c t u r e s and r h e t o r i c a l forms while l e a r n i n g the complex motor s k i l l s of w r i t i n g . Many Native students speak a form of E n g l i s h that i s i n f l u e n c e d by t h e i r t r a d i t i o n a l Native d i s c o u r s e s t y l e s which are r a d i c a l l y d i f f e r e n t from the d i s c o u r s e s t y l e s that are p r e v a l e n t i n c o n v e n t i o n a l t e x t . The S c o l l o n s b e l i e v e that the d i f f e r e n c e s between Native Indian and European d i s c o u r s e p a t t e r n s - grammatical s t r u c t u r e s as w e l l as r e g i s t e r s t y l e s - account f o r the d i f f i c u l t i e s many Native students experience i n t h e i r t r a n s i t i o n from o r a l to l i t e r a t e c u l t u r e . I t i s the d i s c o u r s e system which produces the g r e a t e s t d i f f i c u l t y . I t i s the way ideas are put together i n t o an argument, the way some ideas are s e l e c t e d f o r s p e c i a l emphasis, or the way emotional i n f o r m a t i o n about the ideas i s presented ... The grammatical system g i v e s the message while the d i s c o u r s e system t e l l s how to i n t e r p r e t the message ( S c o l l o n & S c o l l o n , 1981, p. 12). There i s some evidence from research conducted with c o l l e g e students of Western Apache and Navajo descent that d i s c o u r s e p a t t e r n s from N a t i v e languages t r a n s f e r i n t o the d i s c o u r s e p a t t e r n s of w r i t t e n E n g l i s h ( B a r t e l t 1982). A n a l y s i s of almost 900 l e t t e r s and f r e e w r i t i n g compositions w r i t t e n by 34 Western Apache and 153 Navajo r e v e a l e d that a r e p e t i t i v e or. redundant q u a l i t y was evident throughout the w r i t i n g s . T h i s redundancy was used f o r emphasis, f o r c l a r i f i c a t i o n , as a c o u r t e s y , and f o r p e r s u a s i v e purposes. The re s e a r c h e r b e l i e v e d that t h i s d i s c o u r s e t r a i t was a 61 r h e t o r i c a l d e v i c e used by speakers w i t h i n these language communities to enhance meaning. W r i t i n g as Process: Case Study Observations While r h e t o r i c a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s concerning both o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of ex p r e s s i o n have been analyzed and debated s i n c e the time of the Ancient Greeks, the processes of w r i t i n g have only r e c e n t l y r e c e i v e d a t t e n t i o n . In 1958, the f i r s t of a s e r i e s of i n t e r v i e w s with e s t a b l i s h e d authors was p u b l i s h e d , The Paris Interviews - Writers at Work. I n t e r v i e w e r s who t a l k e d with such r e s p e c t e d w r i t e r s as W i l l i a m Faulkner r e v e a l e d that while i n d i v i d u a l authors had i d i o s y n c r a t i c means of a r r i v i n g at a pi e c e of p o l i s h e d prose, they shared a common p r o p e n s i t y towards e x t e n s i v e and d e l i b e r a t e r e v i s i o n . Subsequent p u b l i c a t i o n of three a d d i t i o n a l volumes i n the s e r i e s f u r t h e r r e v e a l e d that while accomplished w r i t e r s had unique w r i t i n g s t r a t e g i e s , they addressed s i m i l a r concerns d u r i n g the w r i t i n g p r o c e s s . T h e i r concerns were p r i m a r i l y c onceptual i n nature, c o n c e n t r a t i n g on a r r i v i n g at the c l e a r e s t e x p r e s s i o n of intended meaning. Janet Emig's (1969) case study o b s e r v a t i o n s of the composing processes of e i g h t grade twelve students was the f i r s t s y stematic e f f o r t of an educator to attempt to d e s c r i b e the w r i t i n g s t r a t e g i e s students use to produce a pi e c e of w r i t i n g f o r teacher e v a l u a t i o n . Emig i d e n t i f i e d s e v e r a l components of students' composing processes from 62 a n a l y s i s of noted w r i t i n g b e h a v i o r s , taperecorded o r a l composing samples and follow-up i n t e r v i e w s . These components i n c l u d e d : the w r i t i n g context, the nature of the w r i t i n g s t i m u l i , p r e w r i t i n g and p l a n n i n g , s t a r t i n g , composing aloud, s t o p p i n g , contemplating the w r i t i n g , r e f o r m u l a t i n g , and the i n h i b i t i n g e f f e c t of teacher e v a l u a t i o n c r i t e r i a . She observed that the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t i n g processes were of d i f f e r e n t lengths and d i f f e r e n t c l u s t e r i n g of components when composing r e f l e x i v e ( p e r s o n a l i z e d ) w r i t i n g and e x t e n s i v e ( d e t a c h e d / r e p o r t o r i a l ) wr i t i n g . Emig noted that her s u b j e c t s ' a t t i t u d e s towards w r i t i n g as w e l l as t h e i r w r i t i n g processes were u n l i k e those d e s c r i b e d by e s t a b l i s h e d w r i t e r s and she s p e c u l a t e d that t e a c h e r s ' e v a l u a t i o n c r i t e r i a were r e s p o n s i b l e . The f i r s t teachers of composition ... by e v a l u a t i n g the products of students by h i g h l y s e l e c t i v e c r i t e r i a ... set r i g i d " parameters to students' w r i t i n g behaviors i n school-sponsored w r i t i n g that the students f i n d d i f f i c u l t to make more supple... Most of the c r i t e r i a ... concerns the a c c i d e n t s r a t h e r than the essences of d i s c o u r s e - that i s , s p e l l i n g , p u n c t u a t i o n , penmanship, and l e n g t h r a t h e r than thematic development, r h e t o r i c a l and s y n t a c t i c s o p h i s t i c a t i o n , and f u l f i l l m e n t of i n t e n t . (Emig 1971, p. 93). Emig's study p r o v i d e d a r e s e a r c h model that has i n s p i r e d s e v e r a l subsequent case study i n v e s t i g a t i o n s i n t o the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the w r i t i n g process and s t r e n g t h s and weaknesses of students' f i n i s h e d w r i t t e n p r o ducts. T. M i s c h e l ' s (1974) in-depth o b s e r v a t i o n of one grade 12 student's w r i t i n g process i n d i c a t e d that h i s s u b j e c t was 63 concerned more with s u r f a c e s t r u c t u r e mechanics than using w r i t i n g as a means of a r r i v i n g at understanding or communicating to a s p e c i f i c audience. E.K. S t a l l a r d ' s (1974) o b s e r v a t i o n s of the w r i t i n g processes of 30 grade 12 students a l s o i n d i c a t e d that students c o n c e n t r a t e d more on s p e l l i n g and mechanics than o v e r a l l c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n . S t a l l a r d was f u r t h e r able to d i f f e r e n t i a t e the w r i t i n g behaviors of good w r i t e r s from w r i t e r s s e l e c t e d at random. He observed that the good w r i t e r s (15 students who had scored h i g h e s t on an essay w r i t i n g t e s t ) put more time i n t o t h e i r w r i t i n g , p a i d c l o s e a t t e n t i o n to c l a r i f y i n g t h e i r statements and were more contemplative d u r i n g the w r i t i n g process than the randomly s e l e c t e d average w r i t e r s . Donald Graves' (1973) case-study i n v e s t i g a t i o n of the w r i t i n g processes of seven year o l d s p r o v i d e d developmental i n f o r m a t i o n about the w r i t i n g behaviors of c h i l d r e n . Graves' o b s e r v a t i o n s , i n t e r v i e w s and a n a l y ses of w r i t t e n products i n d i c a t e d t h a t a c h i l d ' s w r i t i n g development l e v e l was i n f l u e n c e d by such v a r i a b l e s as sex, the use of language and problem s o l v i n g s t r a t e g i e s . On the b a s i s of these f i n d i n g s , Graves has developed a model of w r i t i n g i n s t r u c t i o n which encourages c h i l d r e n to t a l k with classmates i n small groupings and with teachers i n c o n f e r e n c i n g s e s s i o n s as a means of g e n e r a t i n g , s u s t a i n i n g , r e v i s i n g and s h a r i n g t h e i r w r i t t e n composition. He has drawn from Jerome Bruner's n o t i o n of s c a f f o l d i n g to i n d i c a t e to teachers the ways i n which they might e s t a b l i s h 64 s u p p o r t i v e c o n t e x t s which w i l l enable c h i l d r e n to extend t h e i r o r a l and w r i t t e n language resources through t a l k - w r i t e processes (Graves 1983). More r e c e n t l y , case study r e s e a r c h e r s have focused t h e i r a t t e n t i o n on the w r i t i n g processes of mature students, p a r t i c u l a r l y c o l l e g e l e v e l students who have been d e f i n e d as u n s k i l l e d or b a s i c w r i t e r s . S. Pianko and L. Rogers (1977) conducted an o b s e r v a t i o n a l study comparing the w r i t i n g behaviors of 17 students c l a s s i f i e d as e i t h e r t r a d i t i o n a l or remedial w r i t e r s . T h e i r f i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e d that while the s y n t a c t i c m a t u r i t y of the t r a d i t i o n a l students was two years i n advance of the remedial students, a l l of the students, r e g a r d l e s s of age,sex or type of w r i t e r shared common a t t i t u d e s towards w r i t i n g assignments. They ... c o n s i s t e n t l y p r e f e r r e d w r i t i n g about p e r s o n a l t o p i c s , not p r o v i d e d ones; w r i t i n g that was f o r the s e l f , not the teacher; w r i t i n g f o r feedback and i n t e r a c t i o n , not f o r o f f i c i a l e v a l u a t i o n ; w r i t i n g that was f r e e r , more g e n e r a t i v e , not s t r u c t u r e d , academic w r i t i n g . (Pianko and Rogers 1977, p . i v ) . The Pianko and Rogers study was a l s o concerned with the r e l a t i o n s h i p between t h e i r s u b j e c t s ' p e r s o n a l c o n s t r u c t s ( a t t i t u d e s ) towards w r i t i n g , the processes of t h e i r w r i t i n g , and the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of t h e i r w r i t t e n p r o d u c t s . Most notably, the s u b j e c t s tended to spend minimal time and e f f o r t on t h e i r w r i t i n g ; they d i d not become engaged i n the t o p i c s i n an i n t e l l e c t u a l l y e x p l o r a t o r y way. R e v i s i o n s were p r i m a r i l y concerned with mechanics rather than c l a r i f i c a t i o n or c onceptual reshaping. F u r t h e r , most students wrote about 65 p e r s o n a l experiences even when w r i t i n g t o p i c s were framed to r e l a t e to g e n e r a l i z e d i s s u e s . No student attempted to produce t h e o r e t i c a l d i s c o u r s e . These students d i d not w r i t e from t h e i r own m o t i v a t i o n but put out minimal e f f o r t to s a t i s f y the demands of the s c h o o l p l a c e . Nancy Sommer's (1979) case study a n a l y s i s of the r e v i s i o n processes of a group of c o l l e g e freshmen and a group of experienced a d u l t w r i t e r s most c l e a r l y d i f f e r e n t i a t e s the processes that determine the q u a l i t y of a p i e c e of w r i t i n g . While both groups of w r i t e r s r e v i s e d throughout the w r i t i n g process, the c o l l e g e freshmen focused t h e i r a t t e n t i o n on mechanical changes i n the same way that Pianko's and Roger's s u b j e c t s d i d ; the experienced a d u l t w r i t e r s were more concerned with conceptual cohesion and c l a r i t y of meaning. The experienced a d u l t w r i t e r s were a c u t e l y aware of t h e i r audience and produced s e v e r a l d r a f t s before they were s a t i s f i e d that they had adequately s t a t e d t h e i r meaning to that audience. The c o l l e g e freshmen were p r i m a r i l y concerned with producing a s t r u c t u r a l form that would s a t i s f y an i n s t r u c t o r - they were l i k e l y to produce a f i n a l d r a f t with only mechanical changes. Sondra P e r l has a l s o conducted s i g n i f i c a n t case study i n v e s t i g a t i o n r e g a r d i n g the composing processes of u n s k i l l e d c o l l e g e w r i t e r s (1978). P e r l was not only i n t e r e s t e d i n the w r i t i n g behaviors of her s u b j e c t s , however; she was a l s o i n t e r e s t e d i n the e f f e c t s of o r a l language d u r i n g the w r i t i n g p r o c e s s . Her f i v e s u b j e c t s were i n s t r u c t e d to 66 compose aloud d u r i n g the w r i t i n g process i n order to r e v e a l t h e i r i n t e r n a l processes as Janet Emig's s u b j e c t s had done. P e r l a l s o i n t e g r a t e d Robert Z o e l l n e r ' s (1969) t a l k - w r i t e pedagogy i n t o her r e s e a r c h design i n order to i n v e s t i g a t e the g e n e r a t i n g e f f e c t s of t a l k i n g out ideas before beginning to w r i t e . T h i s t a l k i n g - o u t of ideas d i d not i n v o l v e the i n v e s t i g a t o r ' s p a r t i c i p a t i o n or i n t e r v e n t i o n but r a t h e r f u n c t i o n e d as a p r e - w r i t i n g warm-up f o r the s u b j e c t s . P e r l found that the b e h a v i o r a l sequences of p r e - w r i t i n g , w r i t i n g and e d i t i n g were common to a l l of her s u b j e c t s but that there was a ' r e c u r s i v e f e a t u r e ' i n the composing pro c e s s . While the sequence predominated, e d i t i n g o c c u r r e d throughout the composing process and t h i s premature e d i t i n g tended to 'truncate' the flow of the composing process without s u b s t a n t i a l l y improving the s t r u c t u r a l form of t h e i r w r i t t e n product. S e r i o u s s y n t a c t i c and s t y l i s t i c problems p e r s i s t e d i n the f i n i s h e d d r a f t s because of u n c e r t a i n t y about grammatical r u l e s . The e d i t i n g of P e r l ' s s u b j e c t s was f u r t h e r weakened because of a tendency to r e a d - i n missing i n f o r m a t i o n and l e x i c a l items or g l o s s over i n c o r r e c t word endings d u r i n g proof r e a d i n g . As the intended meaning was c l e a r to the w r i t e r , there was l i t t l e concern f o r the need to make the meaning c l e a r to an audience. S i m i l a r to Shaughnessy's b a s i c w r i t i n g students, P e r l ' s s u b j e c t s were e g o c e n t r i c w r i t e r s who lac k e d a concern f o r making t h e i r meaning e x p l i c i t f o r a reader. They had not yet l e a r n e d to d i s t a n c e 67 themselves from t h e i r w r i t i n g i n order to be c r i t i c a l of i t from a reader's vantage p o i n t . ... The students s l i p i n t o narrow frames of r e f e r e n c e and employ r e s t r i c t e d language codes where the audience's understanding i s taken f o r granted. They d i s p l a y an e g o c e n t r i c i t y that binds them to the context i n which they are w r i t i n g and hinders them from t a k i n g the d i s t a n c e r e q u i r e d to view t h e i r w r i t i n g from an o u t s i d e , o b j e c t i v e reader-based p e r s p e c t i v e . ( P e r l 1978, p. 341). A l s o s i m i l a r to Shaughnessy's students (as w e l l as the u n s k i l l e d w r i t e r s i n Pianko's and Roger's st u d y ) , P e r l ' s u n s k i l l e d w r i t e r s l a c k e d o v e r a l l conceptual systems w i t h i n which they might move back and f o r t h between p a r t i c u l a r i n s t a n c e s and an i n t e r p r e t i v e framework. They d e f i n e d t h e i r terms c o n c r e t e l y and thus t i e d to p a r t i c u l a r c o n t e x t s were unable to a r r i v e at more g e n e r a l i z e d a p p l i c a t i o n . A lack of c l a r i t y r e s u l t e d . Although the p r e w r i t i n g t a l k o r i e n t e d the s u b j e c t s to t h e i r t o p i c , i t d i d not enable them to c o n c e p t u a l i z e a d i r e c t i o n f o r t h e i r d i s c o u r s e . Composing aloud served as a means f o r s u s t a i n i n g the w r i t i n g rather than shaping or g u i d i n g i t s o v e r a l l d i r e c t i o n . Linda Flower and John R. Hayes (1980) a l s o used o r a l data i n t h e i r case study i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the problem-s o l v i n g s t r a t e g i e s of novice c o l l e g e w r i t e r s and expert w r i t e r s . T h e i r data ( p r o t o c o l s ) i n c l u d e d d e t a i l e d records of each s u b j e c t s ' w r i t i n g b e h a v i o r s , t r a n s c r i p t s of the v e r b a l i z a t i o n s made by the w r i t e r s who were i n s t r u c t e d to v e r b a l i z e t h e i r t h i n k i n g processes as they wrote, and a l l w r i t t e n m a t e r i a l the w r i t e r s produced. The expert w r i t e r s 68 were found to c o n s i d e r many more aspects of what Flower and Hayes r e f e r to as The R h e t o r i c a l Problem: the r h e t o r i c a l s i t u a t i o n (the assignment and the audience) and the w r i t e r ' s own purpose and g oals (goals concerning the reader, c r e a t i n g a v o i c e , b u i l d i n g meaning, producing formal t e x t ) . The novice w r i t e r s were p r i m a r i l y concerned with producing c o n v e n t i o n a l t e x t . I n t e r e s t i n g l y , the expert w r i t e r s spent l e s s time g e n e r a t i n g t e x t than the novice w r i t e r s as they paused more o f t e n to t h i n k about the r h e t o r i c a l s i t u a t i o n and t h e i r own g o a l s . I t was concluded that good w r i t e r s have a r i c h e r image of the r h e t o r i c a l problem but that novice w r i t e r s c o u l d be taught to take b e t t e r advantage of t h e i r v e r b a l and r h e t o r i c a l s k i l l s . Case study i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the w r i t i n g process have r e v e a l e d u s e f u l i n f o r m a t i o n that i s having an e f f e c t on w r i t i n g i n s t r u c t i o n i n E n g l i s h - s p e a k i n g classrooms. Although the f i n d i n g s of these s t u d i e s have not yet r e s u l t e d in the f o r m u l a t i o n of a comprehensive theory of composing, they do i n d i c a t e d i r e c t i o n s f o r f u r t h e r i n v e s t i g a t i o n . One of these d i r e c t i o n s i s to extend P e r l ' s concern f o r the e f f e c t of t a l k on the w r i t i n g process of u n s k i l l e d w r i t e r s . Although P e r l encouraged her s u b j e c t s to t a l k out t h e i r ideas before they began to w r i t e , she was not a p a r t i c i p a n t in the t a l k but assumed a n o n - i n t e r f e r i n g r o l e . P e r l suggested that i t would be of i n t e r e s t to i n v e s t i g a t e the e f f e c t of i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k as p a r t of the w r i t i n g process, the e f f e c t of student's o r a l d i s c o u r s e s t r a t e g i e s as w e l l as the e f f e c t s of teacher i n t e r v e n t i o n . 69 There have been s e v e r a l i n v e s t i g a t i o n s r e g a r d i n g o r a l language i n the classroom - the e f f e c t s of q u e s t i o n n i n g s t r a t e g i e s , framing of knowledge, extending and e l a b o r a t i o n , e t c . (Barnes 1976; Mehan 1979; Stubbs 1976). However, there i s l i t t l e r e s e a r c h that attempts to d e s c r i b e o r a l language as a h e u r i s t i c f o r students who have d i f f i c u l t y with w r i t i n g . The P e r l study broaches t h i s i s s u e but does not address i t f u l l y . O r a l d i s c o u r s e i s i n t e r a c t i v e by i t s nature; P e r l ' s s u b j e c t s were encouraged to engage i n o r a l d i s c o u r s e but only as i f t a l k i n g to o n e s e l f . T h i s may have c o n t r i b u t e d to the e g o c e n t r i c nature of t h e i r w r i t t e n p r o d u c t s . I t i s apparent that i t would be v a l u a b l e to have a d e s c r i p t i o n of the ways i n which i n t e r a c t i v e o r a l d i s c o u r s e might f u n c t i o n as a p a r t of the w r i t i n g process. I t would a l s o be of i n t e r e s t to examine the e f f e c t s of t h i s i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e process on the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of a student's w r i t t e n product. Summary and C o n c l u s i o n During the past two decades, c o n s i d e r a b l e r e s e a r c h has focused on q u e s t i o n s concerned with language and l e a r n i n g , p a r t i c u l a r l y with m i n o r i t y students whose l e a r n i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s appear to be l a n g u a g e - r e l a t e d . Within t h i s body of r e s e a r c h , there i s growing i n t e r e s t i n the r e l a t i o n s h i p between o r a l and w r i t t e n language and the ways in which o r a l language i n f l u e n c e s the p r o d u c t i o n of w r i t t e n 70 language. While there i s a strong debate re g a r d i n g the nature of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between spoken and w r i t t e n language, there i s agreement that such a r e l a t i o n s h i p e x i s t s . And i t i s g e n e r a l l y assumed t h a t w r i t i n g competencies are dependent upon o r a l competencies. Some t h e o r e t i c i a n s argue that o r a l d i s c o u r s e and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e are q u i t e unique i n t h e i r s t r u c t u r a l forms. O r a l language i s con s i d e r e d to be l e s s formal than w r i t t e n language and i t i s enhanced by s u b t l e t i e s of prosody as w e l l as body language (when communicants are i n p h y s i c a l p r o x i m i t y ) . W r i t t e n language i s co n s i d e r e d to r e l y more h e a v i l y upon s y n t a c t i c e l a b o r a t i o n and e x p l i c i t c h o i c e s of l e x i c a l items i n order to c l e a r l y communicate intended meanings to an absent audience (Olsen 1977; B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia 1982; Smith 1981). I t i s a l s o c o n s i d e r e d to have more i n t e g r a t i v e (cohesive) q u a l i t i e s (Chafe 1982). Others argue that there are s i g n i f i c a n t o v e r l a p s of o r a l and w r i t t e n f e a t u r e s i n samples of each mode (Cayer and Sacks 1979; Epes 1985; F a r r and Janda 1985; Shaughnessy 1977). Deborah Tannen (1982) found many s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e s to be s i m i l a r when comparing o r a l and w r i t t e n samples of n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e . I n v e s t i g a t i o n s conducted with school-age c h i l d r e n i n d i c a t e a r e l a t i o n s h i p between students' competencies i n o r a l and w r i t t e n modes, when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r genre. H i d i and H i l d y a r d (1983) found that c h i l d r e n i n both grades 3 and 5 composed b e t t e r formed n a r r a t i v e s than supported o p i n i o n s , 71 whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . They argued that whereas c h i l d r e n have r e l a t i v e l y well-developed schema f o r n a r r a t i v e s , t h e i r schema f o r arguments i s l e s s w e l l developed, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . These f i n d i n g s are supported by the work of B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia (1982). They c o n s i d e r that c h i l d r e n have more d i f f i c u l t y with w r i t i n g tasks such as argument that r e q u i r e an open d i s c o u r s e system and that c h i l d r e n need to be taught schematic cues to r e p l a c e the v e r b a l cues that they would have d u r i n g c o n v e r s a t i o n . Donald Graves (1983) b e l i e v e s that c h i l d r e n might best be helped through the t r a n s i t i o n from o r a l to w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e through a s c a f f o l d i n g process s i m i l a r to that used by c a r e - g i v e r s who are h e l p i n g young c h i l d r e n l e a r n to t a l k . I t i s a general f i n d i n g that argument i s more d i f f i c u l t f o r students than other genres of w r i t i n g such as n a r r a t i v e and d e s c r i p t i o n ( B r i t t o n 1975; Crowhurst 1980; Shaughnessy 1977). Applebee's (1981) i n v e s t i g a t i o n of the w r i t i n g p r a c t i c e s i n U.S. secondary schools i n d i c a t e d that students were not taught to use w r i t i n g f o r a n a l y t i c a l and t h e o r e t i c a l purposes, and were p o o r l y prepared f o r the academic w r i t i n g tasks of post-secondary s t u d e n t s . There has been c o n s i d e r a b l e r e s e a r c h i n t e r e s t i n the academic w r i t i n g of remedial c o l l e g e students from m i n o r i t y c u l t u r e s s i n c e Mina Shaughnessy's (1977) p u b l i c a t i o n , Errors and Expect at ions . While much of Shaughnessy's a n a l y s i s i s concerned with the d i f f i c u l t i e s e x h i b i t e d by 'Basic W r i t e r s ' 72 i n t h e i r attempts to a c q u i r e c o n v e n t i o n a l f e a t u r e s of w r i t t e n academic d i s c o u r s e , i t i s a l s o concerned with the d i f f i c u l t i e s e x h i b i t e d i n t h e i r attempts to a c q u i r e the p a t t e r n s of c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g which are v a l i d a t e d w i t h i n mainstream academic i n s t i t u t i o n s . W r i t i n g process r e s e a r c h which f o l l o w e d Shaughnessy's p u b l i c a t i o n has r e v e a l e d much about the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the processes and products of B a s i c W r i t e r s and other c o l l e g e students (Flower and Hayes 1980; Pianko 1977; P e r l 1978; Sommers 1979). The f i n d i n g s of t h i s r e s e a r c h are i n agreement that students who are i n e x p e r i e n c e d with academic w r i t i n g have a great d e a l of d i f f i c u l t y c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g c o n v e r s a t i o n a l academic arguments and t h e i r concern f o r s u r f a c e e r r o r s ' t r u n c a t e s ' t h e i r composing p r o c e s s e s . They a l s o tend to p e r s o n a l i z e t h e i r arguments and have d i f f i c u l t y with g e n e r a l i z a t i o n and r e f e r e n c e to broad bases of knowledge. Longstanding r e s e a r c h has i n d i c a t e d that d i v e r s e groups of N a t i v e Indian students are not at ease with the o r a l language demands of a classroom (Dumont 1972; K l e i n f e l d 1979; Nakonechny 1986; P h i l l i p s 1970). However, there i s l i t t l e r e s e a r c h that addresses the w r i t i n g behaviors of N a t i v e Indian students. Wolfram et al. (1979) d e s c r i b e d i a l e c t f e a t u r e s evident i n the w r i t i n g (and o r a l reading) of c h i l d r e n i n two New Mexico Native Indian communities but they o f f e r l i t t l e i n f o r m a t i o n about how these d i a l e c t f e a t u r e s might a f f e c t the c h i l d r e n ' s w r i t i n g p r o c e s s e s . 73 A n a l y s i s of the w r i t i n g of Northwest.Indian c o l l e g e students r e v e a l e d s i m i l a r f i n d i n g s . Nonstandard d i a l e c t f e a t u r e s were evident i n these students' w r i t i n g s but i t was not known how the f e a t u r e s may have a f f e c t e d o v e r a l l w r i t i n g competencies (Chessin and Auerbach 1982). Ron and Suzanne B.K. S c o l l o n b e l i e v e t h a t the d i f f e r e n c e s between Athapaskan and European d i s c o u r s e p a t t e r n s — grammatical s t r u c t u r e s as w e l l as r e g i s t e r s t y l e s — account f o r the d i f f i c u l t i e s many Na t i v e Indian students experience as they l e a r n to speak and w r i t e i n Standard E n g l i s h . A n a l y s i s of the w r i t i n g s of Navajo and Western Apache c o l l e g e students does i n d i c a t e t r a n s f e r of t r a d i t i o n a l d i s c o u r s e p a t t e r n s from o r a l to w r i t t e n E n g l i s h ( B a r t e l t 1982). While many i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between o r a l and w r i t t e n language are p r i m a r i l y concerned with s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e s , the i n t e n t i o n of t h i s r e s e a r c h i n v e s t i g a t i o n has been to a c q u i r e i n s i g h t s that might h e l p teachers to support the attempts of t h e i r underachieving Native Indian students to a c q u i r e an understanding of the whole d i s c o u r s e demands of academic d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . T h i s r e s e a r c h i s concerned with d e f i n i n g the ov e r l a p s between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e , whether n a r r a t i v e or academic, and the ways i n which students' language resources might be extended by b u i l d i n g from t h e i r s t r e n g t h s i n each of these modes and genres. 74 CHAPTER THREE METHODOLOGY I n t r o d u c t i o n T h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n was o r i g i n a l l y intended to be conducted as a n a t u r a l i s t i c study of the o r a l and w r i t t e n language behaviors of underachieving Native Indian secondary students performing w i t h i n the context of a classroom. However, a f t e r twenty months of f i e l d r e s e a r c h , i t became c l e a r that the i n v e s t i g a t i o n would be strengthened i f the q u e s t i o n s that had emerged d u r i n g the f i e l d r e s e a r c h c o u l d be examined with c o n t r o l s f o r the f o l l o w i n g f a c t o r s : sample, context, mode, genre, t o p i c , and audience. Subsequently, a case study design was combined with a small n repeated measures r e s e a r c h design (see Table 3.2). Systematic o b s e r v a t i o n s of i n d i v i d u a l w r i t i n g b ehaviors, taperecorded o r a l language sampling, and i n t e r v i e w s (formal and i n f o r m a l ) were conducted d u r i n g s e s s i o n s h e l d i n d i v i d u a l l y with e i g h t case study s u b j e c t s . These s e s s i o n s were h e l d i n an i s o l a t e d context away from the i n t e r f e r e n c e of the s u b j e c t s ' peers or other f a c t o r s . I t was intended that the s u b j e c t s ' performances would be o p t i m i z e d i n a s u p p o r t i v e environment with one-on-one a t t e n t i o n . 75 F i e l d i n v e s t i g a t i o n s w i t h i n the broader l e a r n i n g context of the case study s u b j e c t s continued throughout the ten months of the case study as a means of o b t a i n i n g a d d i t i o n a l evidence f o r v a l i d a t i o n purposes. F i e l d notes of students' o r a l and w r i t t e n language behaviors i n the classroom continued to be both s y s t e m a t i c a l l y and o c c a s i o n a l l y noted. Other methods commonly used i n f i e l d r e s e a r c h were a l s o employed: s t a n d a r d i z e d w r i t i n g and reading assessments, i n f o r m a l i n t e r v i e w s with other students and s t a f f , and examination of the case study s u b j e c t s ' school r e c o r d s . F i e l d Research C r i t i c s of e d u c a t i o n a l r e s e a r c h argue that n e i t h e r the t r a d i t i o n a l experimental models of r e s e a r c h nor broad-based survey s t u d i e s are h e l p f u l i n understanding the i n t e r n a l processes of a classroom or i n d i v i d u a l ' l e a r n i n g p r o c e s s e s . While normative data are r e c o g n i z e d as u s e f u l i n terms of p r o v i d i n g g e n e r a l i z e d statements of comparative e f f e c t s and outcomes, other methods are r e q u i r e d to p r o v i d e more in-depth e x p l a n a t i o n s of these outcomes. W i l f r e d B.W. M a r t i n i s one Canadian r e s e a r c h e r who has been c r i t i c a l of the l i m i t a t i o n s of the input-output model of e d u c a t i o n a l r e s e a r c h : There has been an i n c r e a s i n g awareness of the need to understand the c o m p l e x i t i e s of the s t r u c t u r e and p r o c e s s e s which are a p a r t of the day-to-day i n t e r a c t i o n s w i t h i n the school ... D e s p i t e the growing i n t e r e s t i n such processes i n the s c h o o l , 76 the c o m p l e x i t i e s of l i f e i n t e a c h i n g - l e a r n i n g arrangements have not been adequately a n a l y z e d . (W.B.W. Mar t i n 1978, p. 19). Methods used in f i e l d r e s e a r c h p r o v i d e means f o r p r o b i n g beneath the how's and why's of s t a t i s t i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n s f o r more in-depth i n s i g h t and e x p l a n a t i o n . These methods are w e l l e s t a b l i s h e d i n e d u c a t i o n a l r e s e a r c h as they are known to be e f f e c t i v e i n r e v e a l i n g understandings that r e f l e c t the s u b j e c t ' s own p e r s p e c t i v e s and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of t h e i r behaviors (Bruyn 1977; Hammersley and Atkinson 1983; O r e n s t e i n and P h i l l i p s 1978; Stake 1977; West 1977; Whyte 1979). They thus provide means for a r r i v i n g at understandings of l e a r n i n g processes that norm r e f e r e n c e d measures are unable to achieve (Averch et al. 1972; Barr 1982; B r i c e Heath 1983; Green and W a l l e t 1981; Hamilton et al. 1977; Healy 1984; M a r t i n 1978; P e r l 1980; T o o t o o s i s 1983; Wolcott 1967). Through systematic o b s e r v a t i o n and involvement with the s u b j e c t s , a f i e l d r esearcher i s able to a r r i v e at an understanding of s u b j e c t s ' behaviors through t h e i r own p e r s p e c t i v e s . While the f i e l d r esearcher w i l l make i n f e r e n c e s based upon the statements and a c t i o n s of the s u b j e c t s as recorded d u r i n g p e r i o d s of o b s e r v a t i o n , she w i l l a l s o . enter i n t o d i s c u s s i o n with i n d i v i d u a l p a r t i c i p a n t s i n order to tease out c l a r i f i c a t i o n . T h i s might be done in a d i r e c t manner, through i n t e r v i e w q u e s t i o n i n g , or more i n f o r m a l l y by e l i c i t i n g r e a c t i o n s to comments. As the i n v e s t i g a t i o n p r ogresses, the f i e l d r esearcher might 77 d i s c l o s e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s as they are u n f o l d i n g and ask f o r response from key s u b j e c t s i n order to v e r i f y or q u e s t i o n these emerging i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s . A f u r t h e r s t r e n g t h of t h i s approach to r e s e a r c h i s that i t i s not bound by pre-determined hypotheses or t h e o r i e s . Although the r e s e a r c h e r may have d e f i n e d g u i d i n g q u e s t i o n s at the outset of the study, i t i s expected that new q u e s t i o n s w i l l a r i s e as p a t t e r n s become e v i d e n t i n the c o l l e c t e d d a t a . Thus, hypotheses are d e f i n e d i n the process of data c o l l e c t i o n and a n a l y s i s . T h i s i s not to say that the f i e l d r esearcher i s without t h e o r e t i c a l guidance i n the i n v e s t i g a t i o n but that t h i s guidance i s open to q u e s t i o n , r e v i s i o n , r e d e f i n i t i o n , .or r e j e c t i o n . At the same time, strands of new t h e o r i e s emerge from the f i e l d d a t a. F i e l d r e s e a r c h i s thus p a r t i c u l a r l y u s e f u l as a means f o r developing 'grounded theory' - theory that has grown out of e m p i r i c a l data (Glaser and Strauss 1967). Grounded theory i s p a r t i c u l a r l y r e l e v a n t to the purposes of e d u c a t i o n a l r e s e a r c h as i t aims to p r o v i d e i n s i g h t s that w i l l have p r a c t i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s . As i n a l l s c i e n t i f i c endeavor, the f i e l d r e s e a r c h e r i s concerned with q u e s t i o n s of b i a s . Awareness of d i v e r s e t h e o r e t i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e s helps the f i e l d r e s e a r c h e r to be a l e r t to h i s / h e r b i a s e s , both i n terms of data c o l l e c t i o n d e c i s i o n s , and i n terms of i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the data. A f i e l d r e s e a r c h e r i s a l s o concerned with the e f f e c t s of h i s / h e r p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the r e s e a r c h s e t t i n g . Hammersley 78 and Atkinson (1983) argue that a l l s o c i a l s c i e n c e r e s e a r c h i s " r e f l e x i v e " i n nature — that the research w i l l have an impact on the re s e a r c h s e t t i n g . However, they argue f u r t h e r t hat i f the resear c h e r i s a l e r t to t h i s impact, v a l u a b l e i n f o r m a t i o n can be r e v e a l e d . F i e l d r e s e a r c h employs d i v e r s e data c o l l e c t i o n procedures i n order to strengthen both the r e l i a b i l i t y and v a l i d i t y of the re s e a r c h outcomes. A d i v e r s i t y of data ( i . e . , o b s e r v a t i o n s , i n t e r v i e w s , document a n a l y s i s ) a l s o a l l o w s f o r stronger v a l i d i t y i n the a n a l y s i s (Hammersley and Atkinson 1983). Case Study Research and Composing Theory Case study r e s e a r c h i s a v a l u a b l e means of gen e r a t i n g q u e s t i o n s f o r i n v e s t i g a t i o n i n areas where there i s l i t t l e knowledge. Case s t u d i e s have been p a r t i c u l a r l y p r o d u c t i v e i n the development of t h e o r i e s concerning the processes i n v o l v e d i n composition. In 1963, Braddock, Lloyd-Jones and Schoer reviewed the s t a t e of r e s e a r c h i n the area of w r i t t e n composition and a r r i v e d at the f o l l o w i n g recommendation concerning the lack of knowledge about composing b e h a v i o r s : Case s t u d i e s have done much to h e l p remedial reading s p e c i a l i s t s understand and a s s i s t t h e i r ' c l i e n t s ' , and the s i m i l a r c o m p l e x i t i e s of w r i t i n g suggest that much may be gained by developing case study procedures a g a i n s t a background of experimental group r e s e a r c h , to i n v e s t i g a t e the f a c t o r s a f f e c t i n g the l e a r n i n g of composition and the procedures which w i l l a c c e l e r a t e and maintain l e a r n i n g (Braddock, Lloyd-Jones, Schoer, 1963, p. 32). 79 Janet Emig's seminal (1969) o b s e r v a t i o n a l study of the composing processes of e i g h t t w e l f t h grade students was the f i r s t s i g n i f i c a n t attempt to d e s c r i b e and i n t e r p r e t the w r i t i n g behaviors of students. Her study was p a r t i c u l a r l y s i g n i f i c a n t i n that p r e v i o u s composition theory had developed p r i m a r i l y from the examination of r h e t o r i c a l t h e o r i e s t h at had evolved from the time of the a n c i e n t Greeks with l i t t l e e m p i r i c a l v a l i d a t i o n . Those few s t u d i e s that had attempted to go beyond the paradigms of l o g i c o - d e d u c t i v e theory had taken the small step of i n f e r r i n g t h e o r e t i c a l s p e c u l a t i o n r e g a r d i n g w r i t i n g behaviors from the a n a l y s i s of f i n i s h e d t e x t produced by students and p r o f e s s i o n a l w r i t e r s . There had been no p r e v i o u s s u b s t a n t i v e e f f o r t to d e s c r i b e the multitude of c o g n i t i v e , l i n g u i s t i c and mechanical behaviors r e q u i r e d of the task of producing w r i t t e n t e x t . Emig's study was a l s o s i g n i f i c a n t i n that i t p r o v i d e d a model from which numerous other composition r e s e a r c h e r s have been i n s p i r e d to conduct i n v e s t i g a t i o n s concerning w r i t i n g behaviors (e.g. Graves 1973; S t a l l a r d 1972; M i s c h e l 1974; Pianko and Rogers 1977; P e r l 1978; Sommers 1979). The case study r e s e a r c h of Janet Emig and Sondra P e r l has p r o v i d e d d i r e c t i o n f o r the design of t h i s study. T h e i r attempts to uncover the s i g n i f i c a n c e of v i s i b l e w r i t i n g behaviors by having t h e i r s u b j e c t s compose aloud r e v e a l e d l i n k s between o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . Both s t u d i e s i l l u s t r a t e d r e l a t i o n s h i p s between the o r a l composing 80 s t r a t e g i e s of t h e i r student s u b j e c t s and the w r i t t e n text that they produced. P e r l a l s o found that her s u b j e c t s spontaneously formed i n q u i r i e s w i t h i n t h e i r o r a l composing s t r a t e g i e s that r e q u i r e d her response: At the outset of the study the r e s e a r c h e r ' s r o l e was planned as a p a s s i v e one i n order to prevent any d i r e c t i n t e r f e r e n c e with the students' composing p r o c e s s e s . However, when the study began, i t seemed unn a t u r a l to a v o i d a d i r e c t q u e s t i o n from a student and the r e s e a r c h e r began c l a r i f y i n g the d i r e c t i o n s or the t o p i c much as she would i n the classroom. T h i s seemed ... an important part of the process - a p a r t t h a t , i f avoided, would only produce c o m p l i c a t i n g f a c t o r s to be accounted f o r l a t e r . (1978, pp. 53-54). P e r l ' s d e c i s i o n to extend her design to i n c o r p o r a t e these i n t e r a c t i o n s was a v a l i d d e c i s i o n i n that she was not conducting a c o n t r o l l e d experimental i n v e s t i g a t i o n but r a t h e r a study designed to be responsive to unknown b e h a v i o r a l v a r i a b l e s . In the d i s c u s s i o n of her f i n d i n g s , P e r l r a i s e s f u r t h e r concerns about the r e l a t i v e l y p a s s i v e r o l e she assumed d u r i n g the case study s e s s i o n s . She suggests that an i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e pedagogy might have been more e f f e c t i v e than the e x p e c t a t i o n that s u b j e c t s would b e n e f i t from t a l k i n g a loud without response. I t i s p o s s i b l e that Z o e l l n e r ' s t a l k - w r i t e pedagogy i s i n t e r p r e t e d too s t r i c t l y ... Students were d i r e c t e d to t a l k out ideas before w r i t i n g ; however, they were given very l i t t l e feedback on those i d e a s . Had the s i t u a t i o n been conducted i n an i n t e r a c t i v e manner, t a l k i n g to r a t h e r than t a l k i n g out, the t a l k - w r i t e padagogy might have been more s u c c e s s f u l . ( P e r l 1978, p. 333). 81 One of the aims of t h i s r e s e a r c h has been to provide in-depth knowledge of the ways i n which i n t e r a c t i v e o r a l d i s c o u r s e s t r a t e g i e s might i n f l u e n c e students' w r i t i n g processes as w e l l as t h e i r w r i t t e n p r o ducts. Case study re s e a r c h methods modelled a f t e r those used by Janet Emig, Sondra P e r l and others were used i n an e f f o r t to s e n s i t i v e l y d e s c r i b e and examine these r e l a t i o n s h i p s and i n t e r a c t i v e p r o c e s s e s . I t has been evident throughout the course of t h i s r e s e a r c h that these methods have been most e f f e c t i v e f o r the aims of the re s e a r c h . The Research S e t t i n g Outreach i s an a l t e r n a t i v e school program l o c a t e d at F i r s t U n i t e d Church (Hastings and Gore) i n Vancouver, Canada. I t i s administered by B r i t a n n i a Secondary School as part of the Vancouver School System. Outreach was o r i g i n a l l y set up by s t r e e t workers to p r o v i d e c o u n s e l l i n g support t o youth who d r i f t e d about the S k i d Road area of Downtown E a s t s i d e Vancouver. During i t s twelve year e x i s t e n c e , i t has evolved i n t o an academic s e t t i n g with students, aged 13 to 18, who are mostly Native Indian. The t o t a l enrolment at Outreach i s l i m i t e d to t h i r t y students at any one time d u r i n g a school year (September-June). I t i s common f o r 15 - 18 students to a t t e n d r e g u l a r l y throughout t h i s time while a ' r e v o l v i n g door' p o l i c y accommodates as many as f i f t y other students f o r v a r y i n g p e r i o d s of time throughout the school year. 82 Outreach students l e a r n of the program through f r i e n d s and/or r e l a t i v e s or are r e f e r r e d by c o u n s e l l o r s i n the school system or other community workers. The o r i g i n a l Outreach program operated as a d r o p - i n c e n t e r that provided food, r e c r e a t i o n and money i n c e n t i v e s to encourage i t s c l i e n t s to s i g n up f o r b a s i c l i f e s k i l l s t u t o r i n g . At present, the program i s c o n s i d e r a b l y more s t r u c t u r e d . I t teaches grades 8 to 10 standard B r i t i s h Columbia c u r r i c u l u m that i n c o r p o r a t e s Native content as w e l l as b a s i c s k i l l s upgrading. C l a s s e s are s l o t t e d i n t o a weekly time t a b l e 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday to F r i d a y . The food component of the program (lunches of soup and sandwiches) remains an important component of the program as most students are on s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e and are not w e l l nourished. R e c r e a t i o n a l s o c o n t i n u e s to be an i n t e g r a l part of the program. Students are i n v o l v e d i n such a c t i v i t i e s as c r a f t s , team s p o r t s , drama, f i e l d t i p s , e t c . Students are a l s o taken camping near the end of the school year when funding a l l o w s . Outreach i s a program where s t a f f and students come to know one another very w e l l w i t h i n the context of the classroom and r e c r e a t i o n a l a c t i v i t i e s . The school i s o r d i n a r i l y s t a f f e d by two teach e r s and two c h i l d care c o u n s e l l o r s . The teachers are r e s p o n s i b l e f o r a l l academic i n s t r u c t i o n , academic c o u n s e l l i n g and rec o r d keeping i n the core s u b j e c t areas ( E n g l i s h , Math, Science, S o c i a l S t u d i e s and P h y s i c a l E d u c a t i o n ) . C h i l d care c o u n s e l l o r s are 83 r e s p o n s i b l e f o r p e r s o n a l problem s o l v i n g with students and t h i s n e c e s s a r i l y i n v o l v e s l i a i s o n with other p r o f e s s i o n a l community workers such as s o c i a l workers, lawyers, p o l i c e , p r o b a t i o n o f f i c e r s , and f o s t e r p a r e n t s . They a l s o conduct home v i s i t s with parents and encourage parents' p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n school events. Teachers and c h i l d care c o u n s e l l o r s share i n food p r e p a r a t i o n and o r g a n i z i n g r e c r e a t i o n a l a c t i v i t i e s . I t i s e s s e n t i a l i n a program of t h i s s i z e and with i t s mandates, that s t a f f work c o o p e r a t i v e l y and that both t e a c h e r s and c o u n s e l l o r s be i n v o l v e d i n non-academic f u n c t i o n s . From a r e s e a r c h e r ' s p o i n t of view, Outreach p r o v i d e d a most c o n g e n i a l context f o r conducting f i e l d r e s e a r c h case study r e s e a r c h . Students and s t a f f a l i k e were i n t e r e s t e d i n the r e s e a r c h and s u p p o r t i v e of i t s i n t e g r a t i o n w i t h i n the school program. Students who were not s e l e c t e d as case study s u b j e c t s were c u r i o u s about the a t t e n t i o n r e c e i v e d by other students d u r i n g the t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s and t h e i r i n t e r e s t gave a c e r t a i n s t a t u s to the s e s s i o n s . Other s t a f f were most h e l p f u l i n p r o v i d i n g f l e x i b i l i t y of t i m e t a b l i n g to assure that a l l case study s u b j e c t s were ab l e to spend adequate time with me d u r i n g these s e s s i o n s . T h i s was important because of the students' i r r e g u l a r attendance. The S u b j e c t s The Native Indian students who are the s u b j e c t s of t h i s study come from d i f f e r e n t r e g i o n s of Canada's western 84 p r o v i n c e s (see Table 3.1). T h e i r a n c e s t r a l c u l t u r a l o r i g i n s are d i v e r s e but they have had s i m i l a r l i f e e x p eriences i n mainstream s o c i e t y as the descendents of Canada's l i t t l e understood a b o r i g i n a l p e o p l e s . They have a l s o shared s i m i l a r experiences as c h i l d r e n r a i s e d on welfare i n poverty c o n d i t i o n s . A l l of these students have a h i s t o r y of home i n s t a b i l i t y ; four of them have l i v e d f o r p e r i o d s of time i n the care of f o s t e r p a r e n t s . These students have a l s o had l i t t l e s t a b i l i t y i n t h e i r s c h o o l i n g . At the time of the study, a l l but one had repeated one or more grades of t h e i r s c h o o l i n g . Table 3.1: Background of the S u b j e c t s Sex Age/ L i n g u i s t i c / Grade C u l t u r a l Group Home of O r i g i n Communities of Residence Schools Attended M 18/10 B e l l a Coola Port A l i c e , B.C. 4 6 M 16/10 B l a c k f o o t / A s s i n i b o i n e Sarcee Reserve A l b e r t a ' 8 1 5 + M 15/8 Kwakuit1 Owikeeno, B.C. 4 8 M 14/8 P l a i n s Cree unknown, Manitoba 3 1 0 F 18/10 Haida Masset, B.C. 3 5 F 17/9 Kwakuitl Owikeeno, B.C. 3 4 F 1 5/9 Saultaux Long P l a i n s , Manitoba 2 6 F 14/9 Kwakuitl A l e r t Bay, B.C 6 7 85 The e i g h t primary s u b j e c t s f o r t h i s study were drawn from a sample of Native Indian students who a t t e n d Outreach; they are r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of underachieving urban Native Indian secondary students. They are e q u a l l y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of male and female students (4:4) and range i n age from 14 to 18. I t was intended that the sample would i n c l u d e students with a range of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e competencies as determined by classroom o b s e r v a t i o n s of o r a l i n t e r a c t i o n s as w e l l as i m p r e s s i o n i s t i c w r i t i n g assessments conducted by myself (a secondary teacher with twelve years of classroom experience) and grades and comments recorded on permanent r e c o r d c a r d s . I t was e v i d e n t from the assessments and r e f e r e n c e to p r e v i o u s performance records that there was a l i m i t e d range of s k i l l l e v e l s among the student p o p u l a t i o n of Outreach. Other c r i t e r i a then became more r e l e v a n t i n the s e l e c t i o n p r o c e s s . Student p e r m i s s i o n and c o o p e r a t i o n as w e l l as p a r e n t a l p e r m i s s i o n were determining f a c t o r s . E q u a l l y important was the student's p r o j e c t e d l e n g t h of time i n the program. Three students who had i n i t i a l l y been chosen to be a p a r t of the study had to be r e p l a c e d i n mid-year. V a r i a b l e s such as age, sex, socio-economic s t a t u s , f a m i l y s i z e and s t a b i l i t y , p r e v i o u s e d u c a t i o n a l experiences and normative t e s t i n g r e s u l t s are c o n s i d e r e d i n d e s c r i b i n g the p o p u l a t i o n and s p e c u l a t i n g upon c e r t a i n of the f i n d i n g s . I t i s not the i n t e n t i o n of t h i s study to attempt to c o n t r o l f o r these v a r i a b l e s , however. Yet, i t i s important to have 86 t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n as a c a u t i o n a g a i n s t g e n e r a l i z i n g the f i n d i n g s t o p o p u l a t i o n s of Native Indian students who have had d i f f e r e n t home and school e x p e r i e n c e s . As there i s l i t t l e r e s e a r c h that examines the academic l e a r n i n g of N a t i v e Indian students at the secondary l e v e l , t h i s c a u t i o n i s p a r t i c u l a r l y important. Role of the Researcher The r e s e a r c h e r ' s r o l e was that of p a r t i c i p a n t observer. Through a sequence of f o r t u i t o u s events I was employed as a teacher i n the r e s e a r c h s e t t i n g throughout a year and a h a l f of p r e l i m i n a r y i n v e s t i g a t i o n s , the year of the formal study, and f o r a year a f t e r completion of the data c o l l e c t i o n . During the f i r s t year and a h a l f of my employment as a teacher i n t h i s s e t t i n g , I conducted e x p l o r a t o r y case study s e s s i o n s to a s s i s t i n the design of the r e s e a r c h and to determine the most e f f e c t i v e way to i n t e g r a t e the r e s e a r c h w i t h i n the o v e r a l l program. I hoped that the r e s e a r c h might be of b e n e f i t to the i n d i v i d u a l students who p a r t i c i p a t e d as s u b j e c t s ; I a l s o hoped that the r e s e a r c h might p r o v i d e me with i n s i g h t s that would f a c i l i t a t e the c h a l l e n g i n g teaching assignment that I had undertaken. T h i s p e r i o d of time was p r o d u c t i v e f o r those purposes and, j u s t as important, students came to accept me as a person they were able to t r u s t . The r e s e a r c h e r ' s ' l e g i t i m a t e d ' r e l a t i o n s h i p with the student s u b j e c t s proved to be b e n e f i c i a l . I t not only 87 f a c i l i t a t e d students' c o o p e r a t i o n d u r i n g case study s e s s i o n s but p r o v i d e d everyday access to data that were r e v e a l e d through spontaneous i n t e r a c t i o n s among students, teachers and c h i l d care c o u n s e l l o r s . The researcher as teacher had c o n s i d e r a b l y more access to i n t i m a t e and r e v e a l i n g data than an ' o u t s i d e r ' would have been able to a c q u i r e . Students would come to me f o r p e r s o n a l c o u n s e l l i n g and c h i l d care c o u n s e l l o r s would share p r i v i l e g e d i n f o r m a t i o n that they f e l t was r e l e v a n t to the students' s c h o o l i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s . I o f t e n reminded my student s u b j e c t s that I was conducting r e s e a r c h as I wanted them to be aware of my dual r o l e . I t was d i f f i c u l t f o r them to know what that meant, however. For example, d u r i n g a s c i e n c e c l a s s I i n d i c a t e d to students that I was a s c i e n t i s t and I was studying the ways that they used o r a l and w r i t t e n language to l e a r n t h e i r l e s s o n s . They found t h a t d i f f i c u l t to b e l i e v e ; the p r e v a l e n t a t t i t u d e was that " s c i e n t i s t s wear white j a c k e t s and look through microscopes." A f t e r s e v e r a l weeks of l e a r n i n g about what i t meant to 'think l i k e a s c i e n t i s t ' , they d i d concede that i t was p o s s i b l e that I was a s c i e n t i s t i n v e s t i g a t i n g t h e i r ways of using language. But they were more i n t r i g u e d by the idea that I was w r i t i n g about them ra t h e r than w r i t i n g a d e s c r i p t i v e a n a l y s i s of t h e i r o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . They thought I must be w r i t i n g a book l i k e S.E. Hinton's The Outsiders. One of my s u b j e c t s s t i l l asks me when my book about ' s t r e e t k i d s ' w i l l be done. I n t e r e s t i n g l y , three of the case study s u b j e c t s asked i f I 88 would help them to w r i t e books about t h e i r l i v e s because they p e r c e i v e d me as some kind of w r i t e r who c o u l d h e l p them w r i t e best s e l l e r s about t h e i r adventures. Because of the i n t e n s e involvement r e q u i r e d of t h i s r o l e of r e s e a r c h e r - t e a c h e r , j o u r n a l notes were kept i n an attempt to d i s t a n c e myself from the emotional upheaval many of these s t u d e n t - s u b j e c t s brought with them i n t o t h e i r l e a r n i n g environment, which was my r e s e a r c h s e t t i n g . These j o u r n a l records helped me to become more s e n s i t i v e to the s p e c i f i c emotional make-ups of a number of students with 'behavior problems' and r e l a t e d ' l e a r n i n g problems'. T h i s i n f o r m a t i o n helped me to be more o b j e c t i v e about these students and t h e i r competencies; i t a l s o helped me to be responsive and i n v e n t i v e i n my t e a c h i n g s t r a t e g i e s . Simple yet s i g n i f i c a n t l e s s o n s were lea r n e d about adapting my t e a c h i n g to a v o i d teacher-student i n t e r a c t i o n s that r e q u i r e d performance behavior on the p a r t of the student. For example: e a r l y i n my t e a c h i n g , i t became evident that these students shared a discomfort with being 'put on the spot' by teacher q u e s t i o n s which they were expected to answer i n f r o n t of t h e i r classmates. When I used my t r a d i t i o n a l classroom methods of asking students to perform i n t h i s way, a l l of the c l a s s would f e e l empathy f o r the student being addressed. On one o c c a s i o n , the e n t i r e group of f i f t e e n began tapping t h e i r p e n c i l s on t h e i r desks to convey the message that they d i d not l i k e to be put on the spot i n t h i s way and d i d not want to see a classmate put on the spot e i t h e r . 89 The w r i t i n g i n these j o u r n a l s a l s o makes referen c e to t h e o r e t i c a l s p e c u l a t i o n s r e g a r d i n g the language behaviors of Native Indian students. These s p e c u l a t i o n s were h e l p f u l i n that i t became evident w i t h i n a short p e r i o d of time that the emerging data would r e v e a l t h e i r own t h e o r e t i c a l s t r a n d s . The t r a d i t i o n a l advice of the f i e l d r e s e a r c h e r to set a s i d e e s t a b l i s h e d theory u n t i l the data had made i t s own statement, was sound a d v i c e . At times, i t was very s t r e s s f u l and exhausting to be si m u l t a n e o u s l y concerned with the r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s of teaching and data g a t h e r i n g . I t was extremely c h a l l e n g i n g to c o n c e n t r a t e on the t o p i c of i n s t r u c t i o n while n o t i n g students' behaviors and u t t e r a n c e s and a l s o to maintain a r e l a x e d demeanor i n order to be able to r e l a t e w e l l with the students. In r e t r o s p e c t and i f f i n a n c i a l circumstances had allowed, i t would have been more d e s i r a b l e t o have been employed as a part-time teacher so that the r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s of teacher and resea r c h e r would have had l e s s of a combined weight. Given more time f o r r e f l e c t i o n d u r i n g the data g a t h e r i n g process would a l s o have f a c i l i t a t e d the design of my methods of a n a l y s i s . As i t was, I was too much a part of the data to be able to see i t s boundaries and p a t t e r n s u n t i l I had the necessary time to s i t back and 'look' at i t . S t i l l , i t i s e v i d e n t throughout my j o u r n a l notes that much of the i n f o r m a t i o n that was gleaned d u r i n g t h i s r e s e a r c h would not have been forthcoming i f I had not spent adequate 90 time d e v e l o p i n g a t r u s t i n g teacher-student r e l a t i o n s h i p with the s u b j e c t s . Research Design Case Study I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e S e s s i o n s . T h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n was conducted as a group of e i g h t case s t u d i e s o r g a n i z e d w i t h i n a small n repeated measures r e s e a r c h d e s i g n . The best w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e and o r a l d i s c o u r s e performances of each of the e i g h t case study s u b j e c t s were determined f o r each of two n a r r a t i v e and two academic t o p i c s . The n a r r a t i v e and academic t o p i c s a l t e r n a t e d so that the p a t t e r n of the design i s na r r a t i v e - a c a d e m i c -n a r r a t i v e - a c a d e m i c , or ABAB. Within t h i s p a t t e r n there i s an a l t e r n a t i o n of w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performance f o l l o w e d by o r a l d i s c o u r s e performance (see Table 3.2). The researcher met i n d i v i d u a l l y with each of the e i g h t case study s u b j e c t s f o r e i g h t i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s d u r i n g a p e r i o d of s i x months. The time-span of the case s t u d i e s (November through A p r i l ) was determined to pr o v i d e time f o r students to s e t t l e i n t o the r o u t i n e of the program at the beginning of the school term and to assure completion of the s e s s i o n s before students began l e a v i n g the c i t y f o r summers with r e l a t i v e s i n the country. The len g t h of the s e s s i o n s ( f o r t y - f i v e minutes) was planned to c o i n c i d e with the time frames of the school time t a b l e . I t was the p e r i o d of time that the s t a f f mutually c o n s i d e r e d to be the maximum p e r i o d of s u s t a i n e d c o n c e n t r a t i o n f o r most of the T a b l e 3.2: E i g h t C a s e S t u d y I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e S e s s i o n s T o p i c I N a r r a t i v e I I A c a d e m i c I I I N a r r a t i v e I V A c a d e m i c S e s s i o n s ( 1 ) C o m p o s i n g ( 2 ) R e v i s i o n ( 3 ) C o m p o s i n g ( 4 ) R e v i s i o n ( 5 ) C o m p o s i n g ( 6 ) R e v i s i o n ( 7 ) C o m p o s i n g ( 8 ) R e v i s i o n S u b j e c t s W O W O W O W O W O W O W O W O M a i e s : 01 0 2 0 3 04 F e m a 1 e s : 05 0 6 07 08 W: W r i t t e n 0: O r a l 92 students i n the program. Thus, d e c i s i o n s concerning time frames were determined by the r e s e a r c h e r ' s o b s e r v a t i o n s of b e h a v i o r a l p a t t e r n s evident d u r i n g the i n i t i a l p e r i o d of time that she was teaching i n the program and with the a d v i c e of other s t a f f members who were f a m i l i a r with the attendance p a t t e r n s of students who had attended Outreach in p r e v i o u s y e a r s . These s e s s i o n s took p l a c e i n a small room that was i s o l a t e d from the area of the church b u i l d i n g where Outreach program i s housed. The advantage of the room was that i t allowed f o r l i t t l e i n t e r f e r e n c e from the n o i s e and a c t i v i t y of the Outreach program but the disadvantage was that the room was open to a hallway where Church s t a f f moved to conduct t h e i r b u s i n e s s . D e s p i t e the o v e r a l l s e n s i t i v i t y and support of the Church s t a f f , there would o c c a s i o n a l l y be c o n v e r s a t i o n s or i n t e r r u p t i o n s that would i n t e r f e r e with the s e s s i o n s i n p r o g r e s s . S t i l l , the advantages outweighed the disadvantages and t h i s small enclave f u r n i s h e d with a bookshelf, t a b l e and two c h a i r s became known as the p l a c e where students went to get h e l p with t h e i r w r i t i n g . The i s o l a t i o n of these s e s s i o n s from the school t e r r i t o r y e s t a b l i s h e d a kind of intimacy between the s t u d e n t - s u b j e c t s and the t e a c h e r - r e s e a r c h e r . C e r t a i n c o n c e s s i o n s were made such as a l l o w i n g students to smoke d u r i n g the s e s s i o n s and c o f f e e would o c c a s i o n a l l y be p r o v i d e d to f a c i l i t a t e the p r e - w r i t i n g warm-up s e s s i o n s . C o n d i t i o n s were maximized f o r p h y s i c a l comfort and the 93 r e s e a r c h e r made a con c e r t e d e f f o r t to e s t a b l i s h an e q u a l l y comfortable emotional c l i m a t e . I t was evident that these students had d i f f i c u l t i e s with t h e i r w r i t i n g tasks i n a classroom context where t h e i r peers would e a s i l y d i s t r a c t them and where they f e l t i n t i m i d a t e d by having to perform a task that promised l i t t l e reward. The ch o i c e of the rese a r c h s e t t i n g and the p u r p o s e f u l s u p p o r t i v e a t t i t u d e of the r e s e a r c h e r (even at times when her pa t i e n c e was s t r e t c h e d to the l i m i t ) was d e l i b e r a t e . I t was e s s e n t i a l to e s t a b l i s h an environment that would encourage these students to make t h e i r best w r i t i n g e f f o r t while a l s o f e e l i n g at ease to d i s c l o s e areas of d i f f i c u l t y . Topics. During these e i g h t s e s s i o n s , the student s u b j e c t s were given s p e c i f i c t o p i c s f o r t h e i r w r i t i n g . Two of the t o p i c s were i n the n a r r a t i v e genre; two of the t o p i c s were in the academic genre. The t o p i c s and as s i g n e d genres were c o n s i s t e n t between the s u b j e c t s so that observed w r i t i n g behaviors and o r a l - w r i t t e n r e l a t i o n s h i p s c o u l d be compar a t i v e l y d i s c u s s e d . The academic t o p i c s were d e f i n e d from i n f o r m a t i o n that students had been d i s c u s s i n g i n the Native S t u d i e s c l a s s e s . I t was expected t h a t they would have enough f a m i l i a r i t y and i n t e r e s t i n the t o p i c s to be able to w r i t e . 94 TOPIC I - N a r r a t i v e : A Personal Impressionable Experience TOPIC II - Academic: Native L i f e Past and Present TOPIC III - N a r r a t i v e : A Personal Impressionable Experience TOPIC IV - Academic: Land Claims Settlements D i r e c t i o n s . During the f i r s t of the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s , the composing s e s s i o n , students were presented with the t o p i c and the expected genre and encouraged to t a l k about the t o p i c i f they f e l t i t would give them more i d e a s . They were a l s o t o l d that they c o u l d ask any q u e s t i o n s that they wished: how to s p e l l a word, what kind of punctuation to use, a p o i n t of i n f o r m a t i o n , whatever would be h e l p f u l to them. I t was intended that these i n q u i r i e s would r e v e a l the d i f f i c u l t i e s these students experienced i n t h e i r w r i t i n g , would p r o v i d e evidence of t h e i r s o p h i s t i c a t i o n in a s k i n g q u e s t i o n s , and would i n d i c a t e ways i n which t h e i r o r a l d i s c o u r s e s t r a t e g i e s a f f e c t e d the outcomes of t h e i r w r i t i n g e f f o r t s . The i n t e r a c t i v e nature of the t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s a l s o p r o v i d e d students with the means of g e n e r a t i n g content f o r t h e i r w r i t i n g and i l l u s t r a t e d the process by which students attempted to a c q u i r e new knowledge and i n t e g r a t e i t with knowledge that was a l r e a d y f a m i l i a r to them. The d e c i s i o n to design the data c o l l e c t i o n i n t h i s way was i n f l u e n c e d by one of the c o n c l u s i o n s a r r i v e d at by Sondra P e r l : 95 T a l k i n g i s more h e l p f u l and has more of an e f f e c t upon the w r i t i n g process when i t occurs along with w r i t i n g r a ther than as a separate p r e w r i t i n g a c t i v i t y . When students use t a l k d u r i n g the midst of w r i t i n g as a way of p r o j e c t i n g ahead, they set up p a r t i c u l a r composing rhythms that make t h e i r new emerging thoughts a c c e s s i b l e while what has been p r e v i o u s l y thought does not get l o s t . In t h i s way, t a l k i n g becomes an e f f e c t i v e s t r a t e g y f o r de v e l o p i n g w r i t i n g , whereas when the two are separated i n the a r t i f i c i a l t a l k - w r i t e manner, the connections that can be made between them are l o s t ( P e r l 1978, p. 333) . The res e a r c h e r d i d not i n i t i a t e t a l k or i n t e r v e n e i n other ways d u r i n g the w r i t i n g process unless the student was s i l e n t l y unproductive f o r s e v e r a l minutes. I t was hoped that the students would expose t h e i r own d i f f i c u l t i e s without having to be probed. I t was a l s o the i n t e n t i o n of the res e a r c h e r to d i s c r i m i n a t e between t a l k r e l a t e d to students' concerns f o r form as separate from t h e i r concern f o r c o n t e n t . The n o t i o n of e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k was borrowed from Douglas Barnes to c a t e g o r i z e the t a l k that o c c u r r e d when students were attempting to generate and shape knowledge f o r the purpose of a r r i v i n g at t h e i r own understanding r a t h e r than f o r communicative or e v a l u a t i v e purposes (Barnes 1982, p. 108). While the resear c h e r had expected t h i s kind of t a l k to take p l a c e d u r i n g the p r e - w r i t i n g warm-up time, i t more o f t e n occurred w i t h i n the w r i t i n g p r o c e s s . T h i s f i n d i n g was . s i m i l a r to the experience r e p o r t e d by P e r l . Again, the researcher d i d not i n i t i a t e t h i s t a l k unless the student was v i s i b l y f r u s t r a t e d and unable to proceed. 96 As the f i r s t s e s s i o n was c o n c l u d i n g , students were t o l d t h a t they would have time to complete t h e i r w r i t i n g the next day and that they would be ab l e to make any changes that they wished. They were then asked to t e l l me aloud what they had w r i t t e n . They were t o l d that they c o u l d read over t h e i r w r i t i n g i f i t would h e l p them. At the beginning of the second s e s s i o n , the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e r e v i s i o n s e s s i o n , students were t o l d that they would be f i n i s h i n g the p i e c e of w r i t i n g t hat they had s t a r t e d the previous day. They were i n s t r u c t e d that they c o u l d add more i n f o r m a t i o n or take away i n f o r m a t i o n or change anything that they wanted to change. At the end of the s e s s i o n they were asked to t e l l me what they had w r i t t e n , i n c l u d i n g what they had w r i t t e n the p r e v i o u s day. If the student balked at t h i s request, i t was suggested that they read through t h e i r w r i t i n g c a r e f u l l y before t e l l i n g me about i t . In order to set up comparable i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e c o n t e x t s , f o r both n a r r a t i v e and academic w r i t i n g t a s k s , d i r e c t i o n s were the same f o r p a r a l l e l s e s s i o n s except i n the p r e s e n t a t i o n of t o p i c . While most students had l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y f o l l o w i n g the d i r e c t i o n to w r i t e a n a r r a t i v e about a p e r s o n a l experience that, had l e f t an impression on them, i t was necessary to o f f e r c o n s i d e r a b l y more d i r e c t i o n in the academic genre as none of the students were at ease with w r i t i n g a formal essay and most s a i d they had never w r i t t e n one bef o r e . Thus, the academic assignment r e q u i r e d 97 that the d i r e c t i o n s i n c l u d e an e x p l i c i t d e s c r i p t i o n of the w r i t i n g task. The academic t o p i c s were presented i n both statement form and q u e s t i o n form to h e l p them understand the nature of the w r i t i n g assignment. N a r r a t i v e D i r e c t i o n s : Session 1: Today I want you to w r i t e about a pe r s o n a l experience that you sometimes t h i n k about - something that has l e f t an impression on you. You may ask me any qu e s t i o n s while you're w r i t i n g - q u e s t i o n s about s p e l l i n g , p u n c t u a t i o n , whatever w i l l h e l p you. You w i l l get s t a r t e d today and tomorrow y o u ' l l have time to make any changes that you might want to make - you might want to add something, change some of i t .. I t ' s up to you ... (At the end of the w r i t i n g ) ... Would you t e l l me what you've w r i t t e n so f a r ? I f you want to read through i t f i r s t , t h a t ' s f i n e . Session 2: Today you w i l l f i n i s h the w r i t i n g that you s t a r t e d y e s t e r d a y . You may add more i n f o r m a t i o n or make any kind of change that you wish. L i k e yesterday, you may ask me que s t i o n s i f you need help with your w r i t i n g ... (At the end of the w r i t i n g ) ... I want you to t e l l me what you wrote both yesterday and today. Read through your w r i t i n g i f you thin k that i t w i l l h e l p you. Academic D i r e c t i o n s : Session 1: You w i l l be doing a d i f f e r e n t kind of w r i t i n g today and tomorrow. Instead of w r i t i n g about an experience that you have had, I want you to w r i t e an essay e x p r e s s i n g your o p i n i o n and p r e s e n t i n g reasons f o r your o p i n i o n s . I want you to wr i t e about 'Native L i f e Past and Present'. Do you think that Native people had b e t t e r l i v e s before Europeans s e t t l e d here? Why? (Or f o r the second t o p i c ...) Today, I want you to wr i t e about Land Claims Settlements. Do you thi n k i t would be good f o r Native people to be abl e to s e t t l e t h e i r land c l a i m s with the government? Why? We've t a l k e d about t h i s t o p i c i n Native S t u d i e s so you might t h i n k about what you have l e a r n e d while you make up your mind 9 8 about your own o p i n i o n . Do you understand the t o p i c ? If you need help with your w r i t i n g , you may ask me any qu e s t i o n s that you wish. I f you want to t a l k about the t o p i c before you s t a r t to w r i t e , that i s okay. Y o u ' l l have more time to work on t h i s w r i t i n g tomorrow - today y o u ' l l get s t a r t e d and then tomorrow you can make changes or add on more i n f o r m a t i o n ... (At the end of the w r i t i n g ) ... W i l l you t e l l me what you wrote today? I f you want to read through i t f i r s t , t h a t ' s f i n e . S e s s i o n 2: Today you w i l l f i n i s h up your w r i t i n g that ypu s t a r t e d y e s t e r d a y . You may add more i n f o r m a t i o n , or make any kind of change that you wish. L i k e yesterday, i f you want to ask me q u e s t i o n s that w i l l h e l p you i n your w r i t i n g , f e e l f r e e to do so ... (At the end of the w r i t i n g ) ... Would you t e l l me what you've w r i t t e n ? I want you to t e l l me what you wrote both yesterday and today ... You may read through your w r i t i n g i f you t h i n k that w i l l h e lp you. Data C o l l e c t i o n . The researcher wrote d e t a i l e d o b s e r v a t i o n s during these s e s s i o n s , n o t i n g a l l w r i t i n g behaviors and the u n i t s of time w i t h i n which they o c c u r r e d . The o r a l i n t e r a c t i o n s which occ u r r e d at a l l stages of these t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s as w e l l as the o r a l performance requested of the students at the end of each s e s s i o n were recorded on audio-tape. These records of a l l t a l k - w r i t e behaviors (and d i s c o u r s e c o n t e n t ) , were subsequently t r a n s c r i b e d and shaped by the c h r o n o l o g i c a l sequence i n which they occurred. Data Samples. The data c o l l e c t e d during these I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Sessions form the primary data base from which a n a l y s i s was conducted f o r the intended purpose of the study. The data samples c o l l e c t e d d u r i n g these i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e composing and r e v i s i o n s e s s i o n s i n c l u d e : 99 P r e - w r i t i n g warm-up t a l l -I n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e ( i n c l u d i n g e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k ) W r i t i n g sample O r a l r e t e l l i n g sample Spontaneous Interviews These primary data samples were c o l l e c t e d f o r each of the two s e s s i o n s conducted f o r a l l four t o p i c s and f o r each of the e i g h t student s u b j e c t s . These primary data are supplemented by formal f i e l d r e s e a r c h o b s e r v a t i o n s of students' classroom w r i t i n g b e h a v i o r s . During the s i x month p e r i o d of the i n d i v i d u a l case study o b s e r v a t i o n s of the e i g h t student s u b j e c t s , the researc h e r arranged to have her w r i t i n g c l a s s e s covered by another s t a f f member two mornings each week. Lessons were c o o p e r a t i v e l y planned and students understood that i t was a team-teaching s i t u a t i o n so that d u r i n g those times when one of my case study s u b j e c t s was absent, I observed (and sometimes c o n t r i b u t e d to) the morning's w r i t i n g c l a s s . T h i s arrangement not only p r o v i d e d the re s e a r c h e r with the o p p o r t u n i t y to c l o s e l y observe s u b j e c t s w r i t i n g i n the classroom context but i t r e i n f o r c e d the students' acceptance of the case study s e s s i o n s as a part of t h e i r r e g u l a r s c h o o l i n g program. T h i s was important as i t a l l e v i a t e d the 100 worry of some case study s u b j e c t s that they might miss something i n c l a s s and do p o o r l y on t h e i r r e p o r t c a r d s . Other supplementary data i n c l u d e d o c c a s i o n a l n o t a t i o n s of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e behaviors d u r i n g other c l a s s s e s s i o n s and of r e l e v a n t student comments that o c c u r r e d throughout the school day. Formal i n t e r v i e w s with the case study s u b j e c t s generated data concerning t h e i r past s c h o o l i n g experiences and t h e i r past and present p r e f e r e n c e s v i s - a - v i s o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e a c t i v i t i e s i n the classroom c o n t e x t . (See Appendix A.) Assessments and comments recorded i n the s u b j e c t s ' permanent re c o r d f i l e s were a l s o c o l l e c t e d as were n o t a t i o n s of the comments of other teachers and c o u n s e l l o r s working with the s u b j e c t s d u r i n g the p e r i o d of the r e s e a r c h . Standardized reading and w r i t i n g assessments were conducted to e s t a b l i s h normative d e s c r i p t o r s of these students* competencies. The Gates-M c G i n i t i e (Form E, l e v e l 1) reading t e s t and the 1978 B.C. M i n i s t r y ' s W r i t i n g Assessment procedures were used f o r t h i s purpose. T h i s comprehensive c o l l e c t i o n of data was s t r u c t u r e d to provide m u l t i p l e sources of evidence from which to v a l i d a t e the f i n d i n g s . (See Appendix B f o r an overview of the case study design and data sources.) D e f i n i n g C a t e g o r i e s f o r A n a l y s i s . While the s t a t e d purposes of any rese a r c h i n v e s t i g a t i o n w i l l p r o v i d e parameters w i t h i n which the i n v e s t i g a t i o n w i l l be conducted, those parameters a l s o a f f e c t d e c i s i o n s regarding the 101 c l a s s i f i c a t i o n and a n a l y s i s of the data c o l l e c t e d . When conducting o b s e r v a t i o n a l case study r e s e a r c h , i t i s c l e a r l y not p o s s i b l e to p r e d i c t e i t h e r the q u a n t i t y or f i n a l shape of the data p r i o r to completion of the data c o l l e c t i o n . While i t i s important t o glean as much i n f o r m a t i o n as p o s s i b l e from a l l a v a i l a b l e sources using as many techniques of data g a t h e r i n g as there may be at the r e s e a r c h e r ' s d i s p o s a l (Wolcott 1967, p. 41), i t then becomes necessary to s i f t and c a t e g o r i z e the data i n ways that r e f l e c t i t s r e l a t i v e s i g n i f i c a n c e to the purposes of the r e s e a r c h . It i s common i n case study r e s e a r c h (and/or r e s e a r c h using f i e l d r e s e a r c h techniques) that data c a t e g o r i e s and procedures f o r a n a l y s i s w i l l emerge from the p a t t e r n s that are evident i n the c o l l e c t e d d ata. Predetermined c a t e g o r i e s and methods of a n a l y s i s are not imposed on the data but r e f l e c t the p a t t e r n s of observed behaviors and recorded comments, e t c . Data a n a l y s i s i s presented i n a deductive manner although the i n i t i a l a n a l y s i s i s conducted i n d u c t i v e l y so that the data d e f i n e s i t s own c a t e g o r i c a l u n i t s f o r a n a l y s i s (Janet Emig, 1971). Thus, the coding system des i g n a t e d by Sondra P e r l f o r her a n a l y s i s of the composing behaviors of her case study s u b j e c t s was designed a f t e r she had c o l l e c t e d her data. I t should be noted that although the coding system i s presented before the a n a l y s i s of the data, i t was d e r i v e d from the data and then used as a b a s i s for g e n e r a l i z i n g about the p a t t e r n s and b e h a v i o r a l sequences found w i t h i n each student's p r o c e s s . ( P e r l 1978, p. 63). 1 02 The methods of a n a l y s i s determined f o r t h i s study have l i k e w i s e been emergent. I n i t i a l g e neral c a t e g o r i z i n g of data was accomplished through c o l o r coding of t y p e w r i t t e n time-sequenced t r a n s c r i p t s of the case study t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s . The c a t e g o r i e s r e f l e c t e d the q u e s t i o n s o u t l i n e d with the statement of purpose i n the proposed r e s e a r c h design (see Table 3.3). Table 3.3: C o l o r Coding C a t e g o r i e s Ta l k - W r i t e Sessions Process: Composing Behaviors ( G i v i n g / Requesting D i r e c t i o n s ) Blue Form: R h e t o r i c a l / S t r u c t u r a l (Questions/ Directions/Comments) Purple Content: O r a l / W r i t t e n ( e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k / w r i t t e n p r o d u c t / o r a l performance) Orange E v a l u a t i o n s : P o s i t i v e / N e g a t i v e Statements ( o r a l / w r i t t e n ' b e h a v i o r s and w r i t t e n products or o r a l performance) Red P r e f e r e n c e s : Mode/Genre (behaviors/spontaneous comments/elicited responses) Green I l l u s t r a t i v e Data: A l l of the above c a t e g o r i e s Yellow Note: Often more than one c o l o r code was a p p l i c a b l e . As handwritten notes and taperecorded data from the case study t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s took shape in the form of c o l o r - c o d e d t y p e w r i t t e n time-sequenced t r a n s c r i p t s , the 103 primary u n i t s of a n a l y s i s became apparent. I t a l s o became apparent that the shape of the data was somewhat d i f f e r e n t than had been expected. For example, while the p r e - w r i t i n g warm-up p e r i o d was designed as a time f o r e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k concerning the w r i t i n g t o p i c , student s u b j e c t s would o f t e n grasp the o p p o r t u n i t y of being i s o l a t e d with a sympathetic a d u l t to t a l k about p e r s o n a l matters that were bo t h e r i n g them. If allowed a few minutes to express these concerns, they would then be w i l l i n g to make a c o n c e r t e d e f f o r t to focus on the task at hand. E x p l o r a t o r y t a l k i n i t i a t e d by the students seldom occurred d u r i n g the w r i t i n g of p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e s but o f t e n o c c u r r e d d u r i n g academic w r i t i n g when students found i t d i f f i c u l t to untangle the c o m p l e x i t i e s of a r r i v i n g at j u s t i f i e d p o s i t i o n s . T h i s became an important f i n d i n g and a l s o reshaped the i n i t i a l design of the a n a l y s i s . E x p l o r a t o r y t a l k was found to be embedded w i t h i n the t a l k - w r i t e process r a t h e r than d u r i n g the p r e - w r i t i n g warm-up p e r i o d . Thus, e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k was analyzed w i t h i n the t a l k - w r i t e p r o t o c o l s r a t h e r than as d i s c r e t e p r e - w r i t i n g p r o t o c o l s . The other s i g n i f i c a n t reshaping of a n a l y t i c a l procedures was determined by the f i n d i n g t h a t student s u b j e c t s had l i t t l e or no concept of the purpose or process of r e v i s i o n . While the second s e s s i o n of the t a l k - w r i t e o b s e r v a t i o n s had been intended as a time to i n v e s t i g a t e the r e v i s i o n behaviors of these students, i t became apparent on 1 04 the t r a n s c r i p t s that most students used t h i s time to add more content or w r i t e a 'good copy', a t t e n d i n g to such s u r f a c e s t r u c t u r e matters as improving the handwriting, s p e l l i n g and p u n c t u a t i o n . Thus the second s e s s i o n became an e x t e n s i o n of the f i r s t s e s s i o n . S i m i l a r composing behaviors were e x h i b i t e d throughout both. As the o r i g i n a l r e s e a r c h design took on new shape with the c o l o r coding of c o l l e c t e d data, i t became ev i d e n t that with minor a d a p t a t i o n s , the coding system designed by Sondra P e r l to d e s c r i b e her s u b j e c t s ' composing processes would pr o v i d e an e f f e c t i v e means of i l l u s t r a t i n g the primary data c o l l e c t e d f o r t h i s study. Her t a l k c a t e g o r i e s r e q u i r e d a d d i t i o n a l . d i s t i n c t i o n s to i n d i c a t e an i n t e r a c t i v e process but the w r i t i n g c a t e g o r i e s were most s u i t a b l e f o r the purposes of t h i s study. T h i s f i n d i n g s u b s t a n t i a t e s P e r l ' s c l a i m t h at her coding system pro v i d e s a s t a n d a r d i z e d , r e p l i c a b l e means of o b s e r v i n g the composing process (1978, p. 55). The coding system and a d a p t a t i o n s made f o r the purposes of t h i s study w i l l be d e s c r i b e d i n d e t a i l l a t e r i n t h i s c h a p t e r . (Also see Appendix D.) The primary u n i t s of data f o r a n a l y s i s have thus been d e f i n e d as the f o l l o w i n g : 64 T a l k - w r i t e P r o t o c o l s (32 n a r r a t i v e / 3 2 academic) 64 W r i t t e n P r o t o c o l s (32 n a r r a t i v e / 3 2 academic) 64 O r a l Performance P r o t o c o l s (32 n a r r a t i v e / 3 2 academic) (8 s u b j e c t s x 4 t o p i c s x 2 s e s s i o n s per t o p i c = 64) 105 Other c o l l e c t e d data samples were c o n s i d e r e d to be supplementary. The c o l o r coding process not only enabled the r e s e a r c h e r to d e f i n e primary u n i t s f o r a n a l y s i s , i t a l s o provided a v i s u a l means of s i l h o u e t t i n g data that c o u l d be used f o r c r o s s - v a l i d a t i o n purposes. T h i s procedure a l s o exposed comments and segments of recorded i n t e r a c t i o n s that would be v a l u a b l e f o r i l l u s t r a t i n g the f i n d i n g s . I f e e l that coupled with the o b l i g a t i o n ... to order and make sense of h i s m a t e r i a l (the f i e l d r e s e a r c h e r ) i s duty-bound to present s u f f i c i e n t primary data so that h i s readers have an adequate b a s i s f o r rendering t h e i r own judgments concerning the a n a l y s i s (Wolcott 1967, pp. 40-41). The s e l e c t i o n of primary data f o r i l l u s t r a t i v e purposes was drawn from the c o l o r coded t r a n s c r i p t s of the t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s with supplementary data d e r i v e d from c o l o r coded f i e l d r e s e a r c h o b s e r v a t i o n s of classroom w r i t i n g episodes, and quoted spontaneous comments with anecdotal e l a b o r a t i o n recorded i n the r e s e a r c h j o u r n a l . Methods of A n a l y s i s . The methods of a n a l y s i s i n c l u d e s t a n d a r d i z e d assessment procedures used to a t t a i n normative statements re g a r d i n g the reading and w r i t i n g competencies of the student s u b j e c t s ; coded t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s ; s t a t i s t i c s such as time-framed word counts of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e samples; l e x i c a l , s y n t a c t i c and content a n a l y s i s of ' f i n i s h e d ' w r i t i n g and comparative samples of o r a l performance; c o l l a t e d i n f o r m a t i o n drawn from formal 106 i n t e r v i e w data, classroom o b s e r v a t i o n s , spontaneous comments and a n e c d o t a l i n f o r m a t i o n recorded i n the resear c h j o u r n a l . These methods of a n a l y s i s w i l l be d e s c r i b e d w i t h i n the framework of the major q u e s t i o n s that have guided the method o l o g i c a l d e c i s i o n s of t h i s r e s e a r c h i n v e s t i g a t i o n . The Research Questions. Question 1: What are the writing competencies of a small sample of urban Native Indian secondary students as assessed by external standards such as those determined for the 1978 province-wide writing assessments conducted by the British Columbia Ministry of Education? The purpose of t h i s q u e s t i o n was to e s t a b l i s h an o b j e c t i v e b a s e - l i n e statement of the w r i t i n g a b i l i t i e s of the e i g h t case study s u b j e c t s . T h i s was achieved by f o l l o w i n g the procedures and r e f e r r i n g to the r a t i n g s c a l e s employed by the B.C. M i n i s t r y L e a r n i n g Assessment Branch i n t h e i r 1978 assessment of B.C. secondary students' w r i t i n g s k i l l s . To inc r e a s e r e l i a b i l i t y , student s u b j e c t s were assessed along with other students (n=50) on two p i e c e s of w r i t i n g r a t h e r than one, as the province-wide assessment had d i r e c t e d . There i s evidence that the assessment of more than one p i e c e of w r i t i n g i n d i f f e r e n t genres p r o v i d e s a more ac c u r a t e assessment of i n d i v i d u a l students' o v e r a l l w r i t i n g competencies (Hopkins and Stanley 1972). Instead of i n s t r u c t i n g students to s e l e c t one of e i t h e r a n a r r a t i v e or 107 o p i n i o n ( e x p o s i t o r y ) t o p i c , students were i n s t r u c t e d on d i f f e r e n t days to w r i t e on each of the t o p i c s . (See Appendix C f o r assignments and r a t i n g s c a l e s . ) Assessments of the w r i t i n g were conducted by three r a t e r s with E n g l i s h t e a c h i n g experience at the i n t e r m e d i a t e , j u n i o r secondary and secondary l e v e l . Each r a t e r has a graduate degree and has recent experience teaching t e a c h e r s - i n - t r a i n i n g at the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia. Raters were t r a i n e d p r i o r to each separate assessment s e s s i o n - n a r r a t i v e and e x p o s i t o r y w r i t i n g s were r a t e d on d i f f e r e n t days. During the 1 - 1/2 hour t r a i n i n g s e s s i o n s , r a t e r s became f a m i l i a r with the assignments and the r a t i n g s c a l e s - they were i n s t r u c t e d to make t h e i r assessments on the b a s i s of the c r i t e r i a d e s c r i b e d i n each s c a l e . Sample assessments were conducted with d i s c u s s i o n of r a t i n g d i s c r e p a n c i e s . C l a r i f i c a t i o n of the c r i t e r i a were thus agreed upon by a l l three r a t e r s with input by the r e s e a r c h e r . Most concerns were r e s o l v e d except i n the case of the rankings of lower range o p i n i o n ( e x p o s i t o r y ) w r i t i n g s . I t was d i f f i c u l t f o r r a t e r s to r e c o n c i l e the 1 and 3 rankings as 1 i n d i c a t e d ' E i t h e r no s e r i o u s attempt t o address the t o p i c OR incomprehensible' and 3 i n d i c a t e d ' E i t h e r attempts to make a statement, but s t y l e i n e f f e c t i v e and mechanical problems e x c e s s i v e OR v i r t u a l l y no content, but s t y l e and mechanics are reasonable'. (See Appendix C.) A number of students d i d not present an e x p l i c i t statement of o p i n i o n 108 with a s u p p o r t i v e argument but an i m p l i c i t statement of o p i n i o n w r i t t e n as a d e s c r i p t i v e n a r r a t i v e of the kind of t e l e v i s i o n show that they thought teenagers would l i k e . One of the r a t e r s wanted to rank these p i e c e s of w r i t i n g as a 1, another thought they ought to be 3's and the t h i r d chose to compromise by ranking them as 2's even though t h i s c ategory d i d not r e a l l y d e s c r i b e the w r i t i n g . A l l three r a t e r s expressed the view that the s c a l e f o r o p i n i o n ( e x p o s i t o r y ) w r i t i n g was not adequately d i s c r i m i n a t i n g of d i s t i n c t i o n s between content and s t r u c t u r a l elements. They were a l s o c r i t i c a l of the d i r e c t i o n s f o r t h i s assignment which asked students to 'Imagine.' They f e l t t h a t t h i s d i r e c t i o n set them o f f on a c r e a t i v e w r i t i n g task and that many of the students responded to the assignment i n t h i s way because most of t h e i r elementary s c h o o l i n g had been imaginary n a r r a t i v e ( r a t h e r than e x p o s i t o r y ) i n form. De s p i t e these d i f f i c u l t i e s and d e s p i t e the r e l a t i v e l y small number of w r i t i n g samples (50 n a r r a t i v e / 5 0 o p i n i o n ) , the i n t e r - r a t e r agreement determined by a Kuder-Richardson formula d e s c r i b e d by Ebel (1979, p. 419) was r e s p e c t a b l e enough to g i v e credence to the f i n d i n g s of the assessment. I n t e r - r a t e r agreement f o r the n a r r a t i v e assessment i s .75; fo r the o p i n i o n assessments, i t i s .67. These agreements are lower than the .83 ( n a r r a t i v e ) and .77 (opinion) agreements of the twenty-four B.C. Assessment r a t e r s who d i d random checks on the r a t i n g s of 2600+ grade e i g h t w r i t i n g 109 samples. S t i l l , they f a l l w i t h i n a range of a c c e p t a b l e parameters f o r h o l i s t i c marking. A survey of w r i t i n g assessments conducted i n the United S t a t e s i n d i c a t e s a r e l i a b i l i t y range of .62 to .80 f o r h o l i s t i c s c o r i n g as was conducted f o r t h i s assessment (Melton and McCready 1982). The f i n d i n g s of t h i s assessment were determined as a means of d e s c r i b i n g the w r i t i n g competencies of the student s u b j e c t s w i t h i n the context of a d i s c u s s i o n of the competencies of a broader sample of Outreach students. The reading l e v e l s of the case study s u b j e c t s were a l s o assessed along with a broader sample ( t h i r t y ) of Outreach students using the G a t e s - M c G i n i t i e (Form E, l e v e l 1) standard measure. While t h i s measure i s not a c u l t u r a l - f r e e measure, i t s norms are based on the e x p e c t a t i o n s f o r achievement i n mainstream classrooms where these students have been schooled. T h i s measure i s commonly used throughout the Vancouver School System. These w r i t i n g and reading assessment f i n d i n g s were then presented as a p a r t of a d e s c r i p t i o n of these students' other s c h o o l i n g competencies and g e n e r a l statements r e g a r d i n g past and present s c h o o l i n g e x p e r i e n c e s . These d e s c r i p t i v e statements were c o l l a t e d from data c o l l e c t e d from a v a r i e t y of sources: comments, grades,, t e s t i n g s c o r e s , e t c . recorded i n students' permanent r e c o r d f i l e s (where a v a i l a b l e ) ; i n f o r m a l i n t e r v i e w s with students' other t e a c h e r s ; formal i n t e r v i e w s with students r e g a r d i n g present and past s c h o o l i n g e x p e r i e n c e s ; f i e l d r e s e a r c h d e s c r i p t i o n s 110 of i n - c l a s s w r i t i n g b ehaviors and expressed a t t i t u d e s r e g a r d i n g o r a l and w r i t t e n language a c t i v i t i e s as w e l l as students' spontaneous comments regarding t h e i r g eneral s c h o o l i n g e x p e r i e n c e s . Question 2 : In what ways is the written discourse performance of these students comparable to their oral discourse performance when controlling for narrative and academi c genres? The purpose of t h i s q u e s t i o n was to i n v e s t i g a t e the s t r u c t u r a l s i m i l a r i t i e s and d i f f e r e n c e s and r e l a t i v e s t r e n g t h s and weaknesses of these students' o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performance, when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r such f a c t o r s as context, genre, audience, t o p i c , and time. Data samples were time-sequenced t r a n s c r i p t s of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e (64 written/64 o r a l p r o t o c o l s ) such as the f o l l o w i n g : W r i t t e n D i s c o u r s e Back in the old days, I guess before the white man came to our land I think the i ndi ans had a pretty good life without people walking around/ maki ng faces at you and calling you down/ or a lot of stupid stuff like that. Well anyway back then our people were free and/ nobody owned you like right now and we didn't need permission to go and kill our food. / These days are fun but I think those days would have been even more fun if them european people didn't come and fuck up our ways of life. Time: 6.5 minutes O r a l D i s c o u r s e Mmm . . Well . . what's it like living . . or what it was I i ke . . It was good. It's not like these days. . . I dunno . . / I just wrote, well . . uh . . that . . them days when it was no white people . . like at this school . . uhh . . this great big island, right? . . uhh . . oh . . The Indians were deadly . . The Indians were all one big family. But that's not what I wrote./ I, uhh . . that was just a good life. And uh . . it . . i t ' s not . . like these days or whatever. This life stinks, I t hi nk . . / Well, the old life, nobody owned you . . / Time: 1.5 minutes The methods of a n a l y s i s were guided by the o r i g i n a l sub-questions o u t l i n e d w i t h i n the framework of each major q u e s t i o n . Composite p a t t e r n s f o r comparison are evident w i t h i n a matrix that i n c o r p o r a t e s both genres and modes (see Table 3.2). Where a p p r o p r i a t e , d i f f e r e n c e s were t e s t e d using the W i l c o x i n Signed-Rank t e s t (Leach 1979, pp. 103-118). ( i ) Is there evidence that the syntax structures, rhetorical organization and lexical items that 1 12 characterize these students' writing discourse also characterize the form of their oral discourse, whether narrative or academi c? S t r u c t u r a l comparisons of the o r a l and w r i t t e n p r o t o c o l s i s concerned with the f o l l o w i n g c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s r e l a t e d to form: 1. S y n t a c t i c complexity 2. L e x i c a l items 3. R h e t o r i c a l o r g a n i z a t i o n (schema) 4 . Cohesion - c o r r e c t l y used syntax, a p p r o p r i a t e use of pronouns and c o n j u n c t i o n s , s e q u e n t i a l n a r r a t i v e or l o g i c a l p r e s e n t a t i o n of argument. (+/-) These c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s are d e s c r i b e d f o r each of the p r o t o c o l s and composite p a t t e r n s are determined. ( i i ) Is there evidence that the content items that characterize these students' written discourse also char acterize t he cont e nt of their or al discourse, whether narrative (persons, incidents, descriptions) or academi c (opinions, arguments, knowledge)? Content items as u n i t s of a n a l y s i s are i d e n t i f i e d as s t a t e d in the q u e s t i o n : 1. N a r r a t i v e - persons, i n c i d e n t s , d e s c r i p t i o n s 2. Academic - o p i n i o n s , arguments, knowledge 1 13 The number and type of content items are noted f o r each of the o r a l and w r i t t e n p r o t o c o l s and composite p a t t e r n s are determined. ( i i i ) Is there evidence that these students generate written discourse with the same ease as oral discourse, whether narrative or academi c? The u n i t s f o r a n a l y s i s of the r e l a t i v e Composing Processes f o r o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e p r o t o c o l s a r e : 1. O r a l / w r i t t e n task independently completed as d i r e c t e d (+/-) 2. Word counts f o r Best Performance (32 o r a l and 32 w r i t t e n p r o t o c o l s ) 3. Timed word counts 4. Number and l e n g t h of pause times Word counts are conducted w i t h i n comparable time frames. Word counts f o r the o r a l p r o t o c o l s does not i n c l u d e repeated words, c o r r e c t e d words, f a l s e s t a r t s , u n i n t e l l i g i b l e sounds or 'umm's' as these u t t e r a n c e s are not e v i d e n t in the w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . Samples, number and l e n g t h of pause times are s e p a r a t e l y noted f o r each of the o r a l and w r i t t e n p r o t o c o l s as a means of comparing t h e i r ease of p r o d u c t i o n . Composite p a t t e r n s are determined. 1 14 Question 3: In what ways are these students' stated preferences vis-a-vis oral and written discourse related to their performances in these modes, whether narrative or academic? The purpose of t h i s q u e s t i o n has been to gain i n s i g h t s t h a t might provide d i r e c t i o n f o r the development of c r o s s - c u l t u r a l methods of o r a l and w r i t t e n academic i n s t r u c t i o n . The f i n d i n g s of t h i s q u e s t i o n are r e l a t e d to a l l of the other q u e s t i o n s posed by t h i s study but p a r t i c u l a r l y q u e s t i o n 4 to f o l l o w . T h i s q u e s t i o n i s answered i n the f o l l o w i n g ways: 1. Students' spontaneous and e l i c i t e d statements r e g a r d i n g t h e i r p r e f e r e n c e s are c o l l a t e d from case study t r a n s c r i p t s , formal i n t e r v i e w s and classroom o b s e r v a t i o n s . These statements are crosschecked f o r c o n s i s t e n c y . 2. Students' w r i t i n g behaviors are examined i n r e l a t i o n to students' statements r e g a r d i n g t h e i r p r e f e r e n c e s . (See q u e s t i o n 4 f o r d e s c r i p t i o n of the data base which i l l u s t r a t e s t a l k - w r i t e behaviors.) 3. S t a t e d comments and observed behaviors are examined i n r e l a t i o n to the students' o r a l and w r i t t e n performances as d e s c r i b e d i n Questions 1 and 2. 4. Composite p a t t e r n s are determined w i t h i n the matrix i l l u s t r a t e d i n Question 2. 1 15 Question 4 : In what ways are the writing processes and written products of these students influenced by the talk that occurred throughout the interactive talk-write s e s s ions? ( i ) Is there evidence that these students used self-reflective talk to facilitate their writing processes? ( i i ) Is there evidence that the interactive talk that occur r ed facilitated the subjects' writing processes? ( i i i ) Is there evidence that the interactive talk that occur r ed influenced the form (syntax structure, rhetorical organization, lexical items) of subjects' written pr oduct s? ( i v ) Is t her e ev i de nee t hat t he interactive t al k t hat occur r ed influenced the content of the subjects' written products, whether narrative (persons, incidents, descriptions) or academi c (opinions, arguments, knowledge)? (v) Is there evidence that interactive talk occurred more frequently depending upon whether the assigned genre is narrative or academi c? The purpose of Question 4 i s to i n v e s t i g a t e the ways i n which i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s t r a t e g i e s i n f l u e n c e the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t i n g p rocesses and w r i t t e n p roducts, whether n a r r a t i v e or academic. The f i n d i n g s were expected to pro v i d e d i r e c t i o n f o r the development of c r o s s - c u l t u r a l 1 1 6 methods of o r a l and w r i t t e n academic i n s t r u c t i o n , as s t a t e d i n Question 3. Question 4 p r o v i d e s parameters f o r the most complex component of the data a n a l y s i s . While previous q u e s t i o n s are p r i m a r i l y concerned with d e s c r i p t i o n s of d i s c r e t e data samples, these q u e s t i o n s r e q u i r e an in-depth a n a l y s i s that i n t e g r a t e s a m u l t i - d i m e n s i o n a l data base. A n a l y s i s of the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s t r a t e g i e s of t e a c h e r - r e s e a r c h e r and s t u d e n t - s u b j e c t p r o v i d e s i n f o r m a t i o n regarding the i n f l u e n c e of these s t r a t e g i e s on students' w r i t i n g processes as w e l l as t h e i r i n f l u e n c e on students' f i n a l w r i t t e n products and o r a l performances. F i n d i n g s of p r e v i o u s q u e s t i o n s take on new meanings w i t h i n the i n t e g r a t e d analyses of Question 4. The data analyzed f o r the purposes of q u e s t i o n 4 i n c l u d e s : time-sequenced t r a n s c r i p t s of the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s (32 n a r r a t i v e / 3 2 academic). A sample from an i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e composing s e s s i o n i l l u s t r a t i n g the data base coded f o r t h i s a n a l y s i s can be found in Appendix E. The Code and Coding Chart. As p r e v i o u s l y d i s c u s s e d , the coding system designed by Sondra P e r l to d e s c r i b e the composing processes of her case study s u b j e c t s p r o v i d e s an e f f e c t i v e means of d e s c r i b i n g these i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e composing s e s s i o n s . While P e r l had not intended to i n c o r p o r a t e i n t e r a c t i v e o r a l language s t r a t e g i e s , the o r a l composing behaviors of her s u b j e c t s extended beyond the 1 17 c o n s t r a i n t s of s e l f - r e f l e c t i v e t a l k and i t was necessary to develop coding c a t e g o r i e s that would take these i n t e r a c t i o n s between s u b j e c t and researcher i n t o account. For the purposes of t h i s study, the o r a l c a t e g o r i e s are extended to p r o v i d e d i s t i n c t i o n s between i n t e r a c t i o n s concerned with w r i t i n g processes, content, form and e d i t i n g . These d i s t i n c t i o n s p rovide a means of d e s c r i b i n g the i n f l u e n c e s of the o r a l i n t e r a c t i o n s as evident i n students' w r i t t e n products and thus achieve the s t a t e d purposes of the study: to examine the i n f l u e n c e s of i n t e r a c t i v e o r a l s t r a t e g i e s of t e a c h e r - r e s e a r c h e r and st u d e n t - s u b j e c t on the w r i t i n g process, w r i t t e n products and o r a l performances. Other a d d i t i o n a l c a t e g o r i e s i n c l u d e : e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k , wait time, o r a l r e t e l l i n g , pauses, and a number of e d i t i n g d i s t i n c t i o n s . (See Appendix D f o r the r e v i s e d coding system used f o r t h i s study.) The i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e t r a n s c r i p t s are coded as i l l u s t r a t e d i n Appendix E. These codes are then t r a n s f e r r e d onto a c h a r t which p r o v i d e s a means of examining each d i s c r e t e o r a l and w r i t t e n behavior that o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the case study s e s s i o n w i t h i n sequenced time frames. T h i s c h a r t p r o v i d e s a c o n c i s e , standard means of a r r i v i n g at a composite d e s c r i p t i o n of the i n t e r a c t i v e composing processes of the s u b j e c t s . I t a l s o p r o v i d e s the means f o r a n a l y z i n g the r e l a t i o n s h i p of each c a t e g o r i c a l behavior to the w r i t i n g process as a whole and the w r i t t e n products that r e s u l t from t h i s p rocess. (See Appendix F f o r a sample c h a r t . T h i s 118 c h a r t i l l u s t r a t e s the coded i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n in Appendix E.) The c h a r t i s designed with a time l i n e t h a t enables the codes to i l l u s t r a t e b e h a v i o r s w i t h i n one minute time frames. Although the s e s s i o n s seldom were longer than 45 minutes, the c h a r t p r o v i d e s f o r an hour as the s e s s i o n s were sometimes extended. The t a l k - w r i t e composing c a t e g o r i e s are coded w i t h i n broader d e s c r i p t i v e c a t e g o r i e s which provide the context w i t h i n which the composing behaviors occur. The broad c a t e g o r i e s (which do not n e c e s s a r i l y occur i n t h i s sequence) a r e : P r e - W r i t i n g Warm-up Tal k C o u n s e l l i n g D i r e c t i o n s * W r i t i n g * E x p l o r a t o r y T a l k * E v a l u a t i o n * I n s t r u c t i o n * R e t e l l i n g Process Spontaneous Interview P o s t - W r i t i n g The only broad c a t e g o r i e s that are coded and analyzed i n d e t a i l a re those which d i r e c t l y r e l a t e to the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e composing p r o c e s s . These are i n d i c a t e d by an a s t e r i s k . Other c a t e g o r i e s are timed to account f o r the time not d i r e c t l y used f o r the purposes of the case study s e s s i o n s . The R e t e l l i n g Process i s accounted f o r when comparing the o r a l and w r i t t e n p r o t o c o l s (Question 2) and the data recorded d u r i n g Spontaneous Interviews i s used f o r v a l i d a t i o n purposes throughout the study. 119 The a n a l y s i s of t h i s summarized data i s then conducted u s i n g the f o l l o w i n g procedures: 1. A composite d e s c r i p t i o n of the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e composing behaviors i s d e r i v e d by t a b u l a t i o n of c h a r t e d codes. 2. I n t e r a c t i o n s are t a b u l a t e d a c c o r d i n g to r e s e a r c h e r / s u b j e c t i n i t i a t i o n and purpose (process, content, form). 3. I n f l u e n c e of i n t e r a c t i o n s i s t a b u l a t e d as noted on the coded c h a r t s as w e l l as the o r i g i n a l t a l k - w r i t e t r a n s c r i p t s . 4. S u b j e c t s ' comments v i s - a - v i s genre p r e f e r e n c e s are c o n s i d e r e d i n r e l a t i o n to the process behaviors and product competencies (as assessed by Questions 1, 2, and 3). 5. Analyses of o r a l and w r i t t e n p r o t o c o l s conducted w i t h i n the g u i d e l i n e s of Questions 2 and 3 are r e i n t e r p r e t e d i n l i g h t of i n f o r m a t i o n that has been d e r i v e d from the a n a l y s e s of the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e t r a n s c r i p t s . 6. Composite p a t t e r n s of f i n d i n g s are determined w i t h i n the matrix p r e v i o u s l y i l l u s t r a t e d . The p a t t e r n s that are made evident through these procedures comprise the most s u b s t a n t i v e f i n d i n g s of t h i s r e s e a r c h . 120 C o n c l u s i o n The methods of a n a l y s i s determined f o r t h i s r e s e a r c h i n v e s t i g a t i o n are v a r i e d and m u l t i - d i m e n s i o n a l i n accordance with the i n t e g r a t i v e demands of the o v e r a l l r e s e a r c h d e s i g n . F i n d i n g s are presented as composite d e s c r i p t i o n s of the data c o l l e c t e d f o r a l l e i g h t s u b j e c t s w i t h i n the framework of each of the r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s . D i s c u s s i o n w i l l then provide i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of these f i n d i n g s with r e f e r e n c e to t h e o r e t i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e s that provided d i r e c t i o n i n the f o r m u l a t i o n of t h i s r e s e a r c h . 121 CHAPTER FOUR ORAL AND WRITTEN DISCOURSE PERFORMANCE ACROSS TWO GENRES: NARRATIVE AND ACADEMIC Intr o d u c t i o n There i s a growing body of l i t e r a t u r e concerned with the r e l a t i o n s h i p between o r a l and w r i t t e n language and the ways i n which o r a l language i n f l u e n c e s the p r o d u c t i o n of w r i t t e n language ( B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia 1982; Dyson 1983; H i d i and H i l d y a r d 1983; Epes 1985; F a r r and Janda 1985). The f i n d i n g s presented i n t h i s chapter address s e v e r a l i s s u e s that are d i s c u s s e d i n t h i s l i t e r a t u r e . For example, i t i s g e n e r a l l y assumed that as o r a l language development precedes w r i t i n g development i n the p r e - s c h o o l y e a r s , o r a l language w i l l remain the b a s i s from which w r i t t e n language w i l l develop, even as students a c q u i r e the more s o p h i s t i c a t e d forms and f u n c t i o n s of academic d i s c o u r s e . Talk i s more e x p r e s s i v e — the speaker i s not o b l i g e d to keep himself i n the background as he may be i n w r i t i n g ; t a l k r e l i e s on an immediate l i n k with l i s t e n e r s , u s u a l l y a group or a whole c l a s s ; the r a p i d exchanges of c o n v e r s a t i o n allow many t h i n g s to go on at once — e x p l o r a t i o n , c l a r i f i c a t i o n , shared i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , i n s i g h t i n t o d i f f e r e n c e s of o p i n i o n , i l l u s t r a t i o n and anecdote, e x p l a n a t i o n by gesture, e x p r e s s i o n of doubt; and i f something i s not c l e a r you can go on u n t i l i t i s ( B r i t t o n et al. 1975, p. 29) . 122 However, lo n g s t a n d i n g r e s e a r c h has i n d i c a t e d that N a t i v e Indian students are g e n e r a l l y not at ease with the o r a l language demands of a classroom ( P h i l l i p s 1970; DuMont 1972; Nakonechny 1986). Thus, one of the i s s u e s that has been of i n t e r e s t i n t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n has been whether t h i s p o p u l a t i o n of Native Indian students would be more at ease with o r a l language performance than w r i t t e n language performance and whether the development of t h e i r n a r r a t i v e and academic w r i t i n g s k i l l s c o u l d r e l y on p r e v i o u s l y developed o r a l language s k i l l s . There i s a f u r t h e r argument i n the l i t e r a t u r e that students who are e f f e c t i v e w r i t e r s are a l s o l i k e l y to be e f f e c t i v e speakers who speak a l i t e r a t e form of language which r e f l e c t s f a m i l i a r i t y with the language of p r i n t (Loban 1976; Tannen 1982). At the same time, there i s c o n s i d e r a b l e evidence that those students who are i n e f f e c t i v e w r i t e r s speak a form of language which i s l e s s l i t e r a t e i n form and r e l i e s more on shared understandings between speakers (Lawton 1968; Cayer and Sacks 1979; Epes 1985). Thus another i s s u e that has guided t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n i s whether students' d i f f i c u l t i e s with w r i t i n g have l e s s to do with d i s t i n c t i o n s between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e than students' f a m i l i a r i t y with l i t e r a t e forms of n a r r a t i v e and academic d i s c o u r s e ( o r a l and w r i t t e n ) that i n v o l v e r e f e r e n c e to d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d forms of knowledge. 1 23 Shaughnessy (1977) sp e c u l a t e d that as her a n a l y s i s of over 4,000 w r i t i n g samples e x h i b i t e d fewer e r r o r s i n the n a r r a t i v e genre than i n academic w r i t i n g t h a t there appeared to be o v e r l a p s between students' o r a l and w r i t t e n language competencies i n d i f f e r e n t genres. Deborah Tannen's (1982) a n a l y s i s of o r a l and w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e s composed by p r o f e s s i o n a l s i n d i c a t e d that there was c o n s i d e r a b l e o v e r l a p of o r a l and l i t e r a t e f e a t u r e s w i t h i n the samples. Other recent comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n samples i n d i c a t e that t here i s a r e l a t i o n s h i p between students' competencies i n o r a l and w r i t t e n modes, when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r genre (Fa r r and Janda 1985; H i d i and H i l d y a r d 1983). Comparisons of n a r r a t i v e and argument samples of students' w r i t i n g i n d i c a t e that these d i f f e r i n g genres p l a c e q u i t e d i f f e r e n t demands on the language resources of students (Crowhurst 1980; Crowhurst and Piche 1979). The d i f f e r e n t i a l demands of n a r r a t i v e and op i n i o n ( e x p o s i t o r y ) w r i t i n g are acknowledged by the r a t i o n a l e of the w r i t i n g assessment s c a l e which was used to assess the s u b j e c t s ' n a r r a t i v e and o p i n i o n w r i t i n g . A ranking of 6.5 or higher on a 9 p o i n t s c a l e was c o n s i d e r e d to be accep t a b l e f o r a n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g whereas a lower ranking of 5 was c o n s i d e r e d to be ac c e p t a b l e f o r the o p i n i o n w r i t i n g (See Appendix C ) . Opinion w r i t i n g r e q u i r e s a n a l y t i c a l t h i n k i n g as w e l l as a more d e p e r s o n a l i z e d , d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d i n f o r m a t i o n base. N a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g may share these c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s but i s a l s o s u i t e d to more p e r s o n a l i z e d 124 c o n t e x t s and r e f e r e n t s . Thus, i s s u e s r e l a t e d to the ch a l l e n g e of composing d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d , d e p e r s o n a l i z e d i n f o r m a t i o n have been addressed through comparative examinations of samples of the s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n performances i n pe r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e and academic genres. W r i t i n g Assessments What are the writing competencies of a small sample of urban Native Indian secondary students as assessed by external standards such as those determined for the 1978 province-wide writing assessments conducted by the British Columbia Ministry of Education? The p o p u l a t i o n whose o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e samples have been analyzed f o r the purposes of t h i s study are r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of those N a t i v e Indian students who have a h i s t o r y of d i f f i c u l t y with s c h o o l i n g and p a r t i c u l a r l y with the academic demands of the secondary school c u r r i c u l u m . In many r e s p e c t s , most of the s u b j e c t s share s i m i l a r p r o f i l e s to the p o p u l a t i o n of remedial c o l l e g e students known as Basic W r i t e r s . The p r o f i l e s of two of the younger students, S h i r e e n , aged 14, and Fred, aged 15, are more l i k e that of inte r m e d i a t e age c h i l d r e n who are beginning to a c q u i r e formal w r i t i n g s k i l l s . Rob, aged 14, i s the only s u b j e c t with w r i t i n g (and reading) s k i l l s that are assessed at grade l e v e l . A l l of the other s u b j e c t s were assessed as having w r i t i n g (and reading) s k i l l s c o n s i d e r a b l y lower than the norms f o r t h e i r age groups. Standardized w r i t i n g assessments i n d i c a t e d that a sample of f i f t y Outreach students were unable to perform 125 w i t h i n an a c c e p t a b l e range f o r t h e i r age group. Using procedures d e f i n e d f o r the B r i t i s h Columbia M i n i s t r y of Education province-wide w r i t i n g assessment (1978), only nine percent (9%) of these students' n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g samples were c o n s i d e r e d to f a l l w i t h i n an 'acceptable' range f o r grade e i g h t students. Twenty-three per cent (23%) of t h e i r o p i n i o n w r i t i n g samples were assessed as 'acceptable' f o r grade e i g h t students. Ranked by three r a t e r s u s i n g a nine p o i n t s c a l e (See Appendix C), the mean ranking f o r the assessment of n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g s i s 3.92 with the l a r g e s t number of rankings at 3 on the s c a l e . The mean ranking f o r the assessment of o p i n i o n w r i t i n g s i s 3.54 with the 3 ranking o c c u r r i n g most f r e q u e n t l y a g a i n . These rankings d e s c r i b e the w r i t i n g as f o l l o w s : Scale P o i n t 3 ( f o r N a r r a t i v e W r i t i n g ) : E i t h e r attempts to t e l l a s t o r y , but s t y l e i s i n e f f e c t i v e and mechanical problems e x c e s s i v e rendering comprehension d i f f i c u l t OR me c h a n i c a l l y s a t i s f a c t o r y but f a i l s to t e l l a s t o r y . Scale P o i n t 3 ( f o r Opinion W r i t i n g ) : E i t h e r attempts to make a statement, but s t y l e i n e f f e c t i v e and mechanical problems e x c e s s i v e OR v i r t u a l l y no content, but s t y l e and mechanics are reasonable. I t should be p o i n t e d out that fewer than f i f t y per cent (50%) of the 1978 grade e i g h t students i n B r i t i s h Columbia wrote samples that were c o n s i d e r e d to be a c c e p t a b l e . I n t e r e s t i n g l y , these students' n a r r a t i v e samples were a l s o c o n s i d e r e d to be l e s s than a c c e p t a b l e than t h e i r o p i n i o n samples. Only t h i r t y - t h r e e percent (33%) of these students 1 26 wrote n a r r a t i v e s that ranked at the a c c e p t a b l e l e v e l of 6.5 or higher on a 9 p o i n t s c a l e ; forty-two percent (42%) wrote o p i n i o n s that ranked at the a c c e p t a b l e l e v e l of 5 or higher on a 9 p o i n t s c a l e . ( I t may be that a l a r g e r number of o p i n i o n essays were c o n s i d e r e d to be a c c e p t a b l e as a r e s u l t of the lower ranking r e q u i r e d of t h i s genre). I t i s evident that the sample of Outreach students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s assessment had d i f f i c u l t y with w r i t i n g performance. While the ages of these students ranged from 13 to 18, with a mean age of 15, n i n e t y - f i v e per cent (95%) of the students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n the province-wide assessment were e i t h e r 13 or 14 years of age. F u r t h e r , while the o r i g i n a l t e s t e e s were given the o p t i o n to s e l e c t the w r i t i n g which they thought would b r i n g them the most success, Outreach students were given both p i e c e s of w r i t i n g to i n c r e a s e the p o s s i b i l i t y that t h e i r best w r i t i n g performances c o u l d be ob t a i n e d . The w r i t i n g assessment r e s u l t s of the case study s u b j e c t s t y p i f y the broader Outreach r e s u l t s (See Tables 4.1 and 4.2). With the e x c e p t i o n of one s u b j e c t , Rob, aged 14, none of the rankings i s w i t h i n an a c c e p t a b l e range. Again, r e f l e c t i n g the broader f i n d i n g s , only one of Rob's w r i t i n g samples was c o n s i d e r e d to be a c c e p t a b l e , h i s o p i n i o n sample. 127 Table 4.1: Grade E i g h t W r i t i n g Assessment R e s u l t s f o r Case Study S u b j e c t s : N a r r a t i v e 1 Ages 14 15 16 17 18 Male 4-4-4 4-3-3 3-3-6 3-3-3 Female 4-4-3 4-4-5 - 3-2-2 * 1 T h r e e - r a t e r rankings on a nine p o i n t s c a l e . * T h i s s u b j e c t l e f t Outreach before the t e s t i n g was conducted. Table 4.2 : Grade E i g h t W r i t i n g Assessment R e s u l t s Case Study S u b j e c t s : Opinion 1 f o r Ages 14 15 16 17 18 Male 6-4-6 2-2-2 4-4-5 3-3-3 Female 3-3-3 3-3-4 - 4-3-5 * 1 T h r e e - r a t e r rankings on a nine p o i n t s c a l e . * T h i s s u b j e c t l e f t Outreach before the t e s t i n g was conducted. W r i t i n g Preferences Although the w r i t i n g s k i l l s of these students were assessed to be w e l l below the norms e s t a b l i s h e d f o r students as much as f i v e years younger, a l l but one of these students expressed enjoyment of p e r s o n a l i z e d w r i t i n g a c t i v i t i e s , both at home and s c h o o l . 128 Write letters to my girlfriend . . . I want to wr i t e a story of my l i f e . . . not a book . . . it wouldn't sell. Ha! I like to write about myself . . . It helps me think . . . everything that's happened to me in my whole life, well i t ' s too much so I thought well, I'll just start writ in' it . . . an' I start remembering ever ything. I Ii ke wr i t i ng stories . . . . In my mind I got what I could write down on paper. If I had better handwriting, I'd be okay. I like writing poems. Write a letter once in a while to my Dad or my sisters. One student, S h i r e e n , aged 14, was adamant that she d i d not care f o r any kind of w r i t i n g . // / had a diary, I'd only write one sentence . . . . Imaginary stories are difficult . . . never did write a report before . . . . I hate writing 'cause you have to t hi nk and it hur t s when I t hi nk . . . . Denise, aged 17, claimed to enjoy a l l forms of w r i t i n g . Writing is good . . . getting all the' information together and how I should put it down . . . . (Narrative) . . . / write what happened before and then I remember what all happened. While a l l but one of the s u b j e c t s enjoyed p e r s o n a l i z e d forms of w r i t i n g which allowed freedom of ex p r e s s i o n w i t h i n a n a r r a t i v e framework and p e r s o n a l c o n t r o l of t o p i c , academic w r i t i n g assignments such as summaries, r e p o r t s , o p i n i o n s , and arguments which r e q u i r e invented frameworks were d i f f i c u l t f o r a l l of the s u b j e c t s . 129 Comparisons of W r i t t e n - O r a l Language Performances In what ways is the written discourse performance of these students comparable to their oral discourse performance when controlling for narrative and academic genr es? W r i t t e n Language Performance. During observed w r i t i n g c l a s s e s , these students, l i k e most of the other Outreach s t u d e n t s , e x h i b i t e d l i t t l e h e s i t a t i o n when asked to w r i t e p e r s o n a l or imaginary n a r r a t i v e s (See Appendix G). However, these same students e x h i b i t e d c o n s i d e r a b l e f r u s t r a t i o n with academic w r i t i n g tasks and i t was necessary to pr o v i d e frameworks of headings, subheadings and qu e s t i o n s to guide them through t h e i r r e a d i n g and summary w r i t i n g of textbook i n f o r m a t i o n . While most of the Outreach students c o u l d compose and ' r e v i s e ' a one page n a r r a t i v e w i t h i n two 45 minute p e r i o d s , they d i d w e l l to compose and ' r e v i s e ' a one page essay (with teacher support) w i t h i n , f i v e 45 minute p e r i o d s . Everything's all screwed up in my head . . . this is hard even for Trudeau there . . . I don't know how to start it . . . . How long does it hav e to be? . . . unt i I my mi nd runs out ? It doesn't make any sense . . . it just seems like I just threw it together and wrote something. How do I start? . . . Can I start with 'I think'? . . . 'Once upon a time'? (laughs) . . . My topic is about I'm just trying to think of how to say it . . . 130 / can't explain it . . . / just don't know how to put it i n wor ds . . . / was t r yi n' to think how I should put 'em . . . / just wrote what came to my mind. Although most of the s u b j e c t s c o u l d r e c a l l having w r i t t e n j o u r n a l s , s t o r i e s and i l l u s t r a t e d r e p o r t s about d i f f e r e n t c o u n t r i e s when they were i n elementary s c h o o l , none c o u l d r e c a l l being asked to w r i t e essays which r e q u i r e d them t o s t a t e an o p i n i o n about an issue and support the op i n i o n with arguments and re f e r e n c e to f a c t s . During p r e l i m i n a r y i n v e s t i g a t i o n s , i t was not expected that these students would have the s k i l l s r e q u i r e d of formal essay w r i t i n g as the B r i t i s h Columbia Cur r i c u l u m does not c a l l f o r formal essay i n s t r u c t i o n u n t i l grade 1 2 . However, i t was expected that they would have some f a m i l i a r i t y with the s k i l l s of summary w r i t i n g , o p i n i o n w r i t i n g , and report w r i t i n g which are the components of the formal r e s e a r c h essay. Composing Task Independently Completed. Classroom o b s e r v a t i o n s i n d i c a t e d that most of the Outreach students, i n c l u d i n g a l l of the case study s u b j e c t s , had a great deal of d i f f i c u l t y with any academic t a s k s . Thus, i t was not s u r p r i s i n g t h at there were few s t u d e n t - s u b j e c t s who attempted to compose t h e i r academic w r i t i n g tasks independently. 131 Table 4.3: Composing Tasks Independently Completed and Completed with Help S e s s i o n 1: Session 2: Session 3: Sess i o n 4: N a r r a t i v e Academic N a r r a t i v e Academic No Help 5 1 6 2 With Help 3 7 2 6 Only two of the e i g h t s u b j e c t s attempted to compose an academic p i e c e of w r i t i n g without the i n t e r v e n t i o n of the researcher whereas s i x s u b j e c t s composed a n a r r a t i v e p i e c e of w r i t i n g independently. These two s u b j e c t s , C a r o l e , aged 18, and Denise, aged 17, were among the o l d e r s u b j e c t s and had p r i d e i n v o l v e d i n demonstrating t h e i r w r i t i n g c a p a b i l i t i e s . Each a l s o had much more confidence i n t h e i r own ideas and knowledge base than the other s u b j e c t s as they had p a r t i c i p a t e d i n meetings where Native i s s u e s were the focus of d i s c u s s i o n . Once a year, I go to the United Native Nations meetings and we would discuss all sorts of things about white man for what they did to our people . . . . I got books at home of the D.I.A.(Department of Indi an Affai r s) I don't have to think too much because I already know what I'm gonna write and it just all falls into pl ace in my head. The other s i x s u b j e c t s had more d i f f i c u l t y attempting the academic w r i t i n g task and t h i s was p a r t l y because they had l i t t l e c o nfidence i n t h e i r knowledge base. Although the 132 t o p i c s were chosen by the r e s e a r c h e r , they were t o p i c s that had been d i s c u s s e d d u r i n g these students' N a t i v e s t u d i e s c l a s s e s , and they were t o p i c s t h a t allowed students to draw from knowledge gained through p e r s o n a l l i f e experience and from t a l k i n g with r e l a t i v e s , e l d e r s , and c h i e f s from t h e i r home communities. Six of the e i g h t s u b j e c t s had to be persuaded that the knowledge they had gained from these sources was v a l u a b l e as a resource f o r t h i n k i n g about the t o p i c s . They p r e f e r r e d s t o r y w r i t i n g as they assumed that they would need book knowledge f o r essay w r i t i n g whereas s t o r y w r i t i n g c o u l d j u s t come from t h e i r own thoughts. / don't know about them Indians that lived them old days . . . . I'm not that old . . . and I don't read very much books . . . . / just think of the story in my head . . . // you have imagination, i t ' s easy. Essay writing depends on whether I know much about the subject . . . . Some reports are hard. When I look it up in the encyclopedia, I don't know the meaning of the words. I like writing stories . . . . Before you write a story, you know what you're gonna write about . . . i t ' s in your head an' you' r e t el I i n' t he paper . . . . Essay writing? It's boring . . . it has to do with school . . . for the teacher . . . you're telling what to do and what you want and how you want it done . . . looking it (information) up in books, putting it down in that . . . order how they want it.... It's easier to write about what I know . . . my life . . . s hor t l i t t l e stories. Essays . . . hard to think . . . can't think right . . . all those big fancy words in the books . . . . Imaginary stories are things that come out of your head . . . . Essay writing you got to think-about it, you have to memorize some of the parts to write down . . . needs to be explained right. Story writing is easier than essay writing . . . whatever comes into your mind you wr i t e down . . . . 1 33 Reading Assessments. The s u b j e c t s ' assumption that knowledge accep t a b l e f o r academic w r i t i n g c o u l d only be d e r i v e d from books was very i n h i b i t i n g as, l i k e a l l Outreach students, the s u b j e c t s had d i f f i c u l t y reading academic m a t e r i a l s . Of the t h i r t y Outreach students whose reading s k i l l s were assessed by the Gates M c G i n i t i e measure, only one case study s u b j e c t , Rob, age 14, and two other female students read at grade l e v e l . Students' scores ranged from grades 3.1 to 11.5 with a mean assessment of 6.5. While the mean age of the students t e s t e d was 15 (the common age f o r grade 10), a mean reading l e v e l of 6.5 would be expected of students i n the 11 to 12 age range. Most Outreach students t e s t e d f o r the purposes of t h i s study had not developed the l i t e r a c y s k i l l s ( w r i t i n g or reading) that are at the l e v e l r e q u i r e d f o r s u c c e s s f u l l e a r n i n g i n mainstream secondary school classrooms. Although a d a p t a t i o n s of methods and m a t e r i a l s were made to h e l p a l l Outreach students with t h e i r d i f f i c u l t i e s understanding academic m a t e r i a l s , none of the students, i n c l u d i n g the case study s u b j e c t s , expressed an i n t e r e s t in reading about i n f o r m a t i o n of an impersonal nature organized i n c h a p t e r s with subheadings. Students who expressed an enjoyment of reading, d e s p i t e apparent d i f f i c u l t i e s , r e f e r to the n a r r a t i v e types of p r i n t m a t e r i a l s that they a l s o 134 Table 4.4: Ga t e s - M a c G i n i t i e Reading Test Grade L e v e l Norms f o r E i g h t Case Study Subj e c t s (Normative Grade L e v e l s f o r each age category are i n brackets) Ages 14 1 5 16 1 7 18 Male 8.9 5.2 6.9 5.6 (9) (10) (11) (13) Female 6.1 7.9 4.2 * (9) (10) (12) * T h i s subject l e f t Outreach before the t e s t i n g was conducted. Her records show a reading l e v e l of grade 4.9 at 15 years of age. She was t e s t e d at that time with The Canadian t e s t of Basic S k i l l s . enjoy w r i t i n g . Most of these students enjoyed w r i t i n g and reading p e r s o n a l i z e d and f i c t i o n a l n a r r a t i v e s , both at home and s c h o o l . I like to read funny stories . . . something more I can learn about myself . . . . Harshly (i.e. greatly) like to read . . . all the time . . . novels . . . magazi ne s . . . . I like to read once in awhile . . . adventure books and thrillers. The two s u b j e c t s who i n d i c a t e d that they d i d not l i k e r e ading seemed to lack i n t e r e s t in any type of p r i n t m a t e r i a l s . / don't read unless i t ' s an assignment . . . . I don't like to read because i t ' s a waste of time. Don't like reading . . . takes too long . . . all those words. 135 O r a l Language Performance. While the Outreach students had d i f f i c u l t y with w r i t i n g (and r e a d i n g ) , p a r t i c u l a r l y academic assignments, i t i s evident that they had more d i f f i c u l t y with o r a l than w r i t t e n language performance, whether n a r r a t i v e or academic. A r e c e n t l y completed study of the classroom language of a sample of the Outreach students (from which the p o p u l a t i o n of t h i s r e s e a r c h i s drawn) i n d i c a t e s that u n l e s s these students were encouraged to c o n t r i b u t e knowledge from t h e i r p e r s o n a l experiences they r e s i s t e d t eachers' e f f o r t s to engage them i n classroom d i s c u s s i o n s . They complained s t r o n g l y when teachers attempted to engage them i n d i s c u s s i o n s of d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d i n f o r m a t i o n that had no p e r c e i v e d p o i n t of c o n t a c t with t h e i r p e r s o n a l experiences ( i . e . , o r g a n i z a t i o n of government bur e a u c r a c y ) . The r e s e a r c h e r found that these students' longest s u s t a i n e d o r a l d i s c o u r s e was p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e shared out of the context of the classroom (Nakonechny 1986). Most of the student s u b j e c t s who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s r e s e a r c h a l s o expressed a d i s c o m f o r t with classroom teachers who expected 'too much t a l k . ' Most were upset by teachers who p r e s s u r e d them to c o n t r i b u t e to classroom d i s c u s s i o n s or respond to q u e s t i o n s posed to them in f r o n t of t h e i r c l a s s m a t e s . T h i s d i s c o m f o r t seems to be as much a r e f l e c t i o n of the students' r e l a t i o n s h i p with t h e i r 136 classmates and t h e i r t e a c h e r s as the s t a t e of t h e i r knowledge about the t o p i c being addressed by the teacher. It's embarrasing . . . especially if you do a mistake and they all laugh at you . . . . I'd just sit there and act dumb . . . he'd ask another student. In Port Alice I knew everybody there so I had the right to ask questions if I didn't understand it. I was too shy in other schools. I'm scared I might sound stupid . . . . Easier at Outreach because I know everybody . . . like I joke around with the teachers, i t ' s easier to talk to t hem. If ya get l i t t l e things wrong, they bug ya so that's why I don't say not hi n' out in class. When the old bag was there then I didn't answer questions or not hi n' . . . I jest' sat there and let her gab away . . . she was crabby to me, she didn't like me . . . . When the substitute came in that's when I mainly started . . . she liked me. The teacher talks about what they're supposed to be talking about but they jest carry it on a l i t t l e bit too long . . . . / can't tell you exactly what they would say because most of the words they speak I can't hardly understand . . . . If I have something to say, maybe I'll say it. I'm shy unless I'm used to all the people that are in there . . . . Teachers have to learn to listen and learn from the students . . . teachers in big schools are always busy. Three of the su b j e c t s expressed that they f e l t s e l f - c o n s c i o u s about the "sound" of t h e i r o r a l language. / don't like the way I t al k . . . . I sound like a l i t t l e boy . . . . I sound like (names another Outreach student) ... /aughs . . . I sound like a backwoods Indian. 137 While many s o c i a l and i n t e r a c t i o n a l f a c t o r s come i n t o p l a y when students are asked to p a r t i c i p a t e i n classroom t a s k s , s i x of the e i g h t case study s u b j e c t s ( a l l but Rob and Denise) remarked that they were uncomfortable with a l o t of t a l k i n s i t u a t i o n s o u t s i d e of the school environment as w e l l . An' then she started talking to me. I wasn't ready to talk at her so I just became very snotty, I guess, in answering her questions . . . she jest kept on talking an' I didn't really wanna talk 'cause I wasn't ready to . . . . He also had a loud mouth and he talked too much about nothing. My dad don't talk to me that much . . . / don't know hi m t hat good . . . I'm just the type that don't like talking. Once in a while I t al k wi t h my mom about what I learn in school . . . somethin' good . . . . My mom does care but she just doesn't say anything. I just don't like talking about myself. And then my Dad started causing trouble with his drinking too much. Constantly drinking, never understood why though . . . couldn't understand whether it was because of me. The s u b j e c t s ' expressed d i s c o m f o r t with too much t a l k was a l s o evident i n the comparison of t h e i r o r a l - w r i t t e n language performance d u r i n g case study s e s s i o n s . Word Counts f o r Best Performances. Most of the s u b j e c t s were unable to perform as w e l l i n the o r a l mode as i n the w r i t t e n . T h i s was evi d e n t even when they were o u t s i d e of a classroom environment and had the op p o r t u n i t y to formulate t h e i r thoughts d u r i n g two 45 minute i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e 138 s e s s i o n s . With the exception of e i g h t r e t e l l i n g s out of t h i r t y - t w o best r e t e l l i n g performances by four s u b j e c t s , the s u b j e c t s otherwise produced more words i n the w r i t t e n mode than i n the o r a l mode (see Table 4.5). Six of these e i g h t exceptions are i n the n a r r a t i v e genre, two are i n the academic genre. Greg and Denise who extended two w r i t t e n academic p i e c e s d u r i n g t h e i r r e t e l l i n g s a l s o extended t h e i r w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e s d u r i n g t h e i r r e t e l l i n g s . Each of these students p e r s o n a l i z e d the contents of t h e i r academic d i s c o u r s e d u r i n g r e t e l l i n g s and t h i s accounted f o r much of the extension of the academic d i s c o u r s e . A l s o , with the exception of Rob, 14, three of the s u b j e c t s who produced more o r a l d i s c o u r s e are among the four o l d e r s u b j e c t s , Greg, 16, Denise, 17, and C a r o l e , 18. -The academic genre, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n , posed gr e a t e r c h a l l e n g e s to these students than the n a r r a t i v e genre. O v e r a l l word counts comparing o r a l and w r i t t e n performances i n two n a r r a t i v e and two academic tasks i n d i c a t e d that even with probes, only four students were able to produce more words d u r i n g the o r a l r e t e l l i n g s of t h e i r n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g s . Even fewer students (two) were able to produce more words d u r i n g the o r a l r e t e l l i n g s of t h e i r academic w r i t i n g (see Table 4.5). These counts a l s o i n c l u d e d probes. Even those s u b j e c t s who were at ease with the o r a l r e t e l l i n g and e l a b o r a t i o n of t h e i r w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e s (Rob, Greg and Denise) had d i f f i c u l t y r e t e l l i n g t h e i r academic w r i t i n g . I t i s a genre which was c l e a r l y T a b l e 4.5: T o t a l Number o f W o r d s : O r a l a n d W r i t t e n C o m p a r i s o n s Narrative Academic S e s s i o n One S e s s i o n T h r e e S e s s i o n Two S e s s i o n F o u r S u b j e c t s Oral Wri tten Oral Written Oral Wri tten Oral Written Ma 1 e s Ed 147 312 416 579 175 322 181 201 Rob *1 173 570 * 15 18 507 97 146 136 184 F r e d 43 191 96 132 79 138 74 191 G r e g *344 223 *923 284 *224 223 6 5 120 Fema1es C a r o l e 69 3 8 0 *545 525 9 0 228 204 271 S h i r e e n 4 0 107 32 113 0 96 61 161 Nan 311 474 464 519 158 203 103 2 22 Den i s e *598 285 4 6 0 521 254 355 * 3 7 0 317 T o t a 1 s 2725 2542 4454 3 1 8 0 1077 1711 1 194 1667 * Word c o u n t s w e r e h i g h e r f o r t h e r e t e l l i n g s t h a n t h e wr i t i n g s . NO < NW NO > AO W+ = 70 W+ = 13 p = .9382 p = .0048 AO < AW W+ = 7 p = .0017 NW > AW W+ = 21 p = .0114 1 40 u n f a m i l i a r to these students. I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g to note, however, that those s u b j e c t s who had the most d i f f i c u l t y g e n e rating e i t h e r o r a l or w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e (Fred and Shireen) performed comparably between n a r r a t i v e and academic genres. T h i s l i k e l y r e f l e c t e d the tendency of these s u b j e c t s to seek i n t e r v e n t i o n as f r e q u e n t l y i n one genre as the o t h e r . N e i t h e r of these s u b j e c t s had confidence i n h i s or her w r i t i n g or o r a l language a b i l i t i e s . Shireen was the subject who would not attempt to r e t e l l a-piece of w r i t i n g (her f i r s t attempt at academic w r i t i n g ) , d e s p i t e numerous probes by the r e s e a r c h e r . There were a number of f a c t o r s r e l a t e d to s u b j e c t s ' o v e r a l l d i f f i c u l t i e s with s u s t a i n i n g the content of t h e i r w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e d u r i n g r e t e l l i n g performances (See Table 4.6) . Table 4.6: General Comparisons of Content E l a b o r a t i o n (out of 32 best performance samples) N a r r a t i v e Academic More O r a l 6 2 More W r i t t e n 10 14 16 16 = 32 One of the f a c t o r s was that students tended to summarize the contents of t h e i r w r i t i n g , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the academic genre. While persons and i n c i d e n t s remained constant between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e , 141 d e s c r i p t i v e d e t a i l s were l o s t i n ten of the s i x t e e n best performances r e t e l l i n g s . In fourteen of the s i x t e e n academic r e t e l l i n g performances, o p i n i o n s , arguments and knowledge base remained constant but i t was presented i n a fragmented form that l a c k e d a cohesive o r g a n i z a t i o n . Whereas the n a r r a t i v e r e t e l l i n g s f o l l o w e d the order of the n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g s q u i t e c l o s e l y , the academic r e t e l l i n g s l o s t the o v e r a l l conceptual development of the w r i t i n g , d e s p i t e reading through the w r i t i n g before the r e t e l l i n g and d e s p i t e e f f o r t s to r e c a l l the inf o r m a t i o n by r e l y i n g on paragraphing and other o r g a n i z a t i o n a l f e a t u r e s . That's in the first paragraph . . Well ... I try to talk about it from the way I've written it. I know what I got in my paragraphs . . That's all I put for that one . . this paragraph. I got a bad memory . . i t ' s moldy up inside. This is hard for even Trudeau there. Two of the students r e s o r t e d to r e t e l l i n g the l a s t h a l f of t h e i r w r i t i n g ; they were not able to remember or i n t e g r a t e t h e i r f i r s t statements. Others became confused when the inf o r m a t i o n was generated i n a d i s o r g a n i z e d way and i t d i d n ' t make sense to them. Subjects r e q u i r e d the prodding of the researc h e r more o f t e n i n the academic genre: s i x t e e n prods i n comparison to ten prods ( f i v e of which o c c u r r e d d u r i n g one r e t e l l i n g by the youngest g i r l , S h ireen, who was the only s u b j e c t t o ref u s e to r e t e l l a piec e of 142 w r i t i n g (her f i r s t academic p i e c e ) . Prods ranged from ge n e r a l prods such as " T e l l me more about ..." or "What e l s e d i d you w r i t e about ...?" I t was hoped that a general prod would e l i c i t e l a b o r a t i o n but i f necessary a c l u e was in c l u d e d i n the prod. The f o l l o w i n g samples of o r a l and w r i t t e n products i l l u s t r a t e the d i f f i c u l t i e s experienced by the s u b j e c t s d u r i n g the r e t e l l i n g s of t h e i r academic w r i t i n g s i n comparison to the r e l a t i v e ease of t h e i r n a r r a t i v e r e t e l l i n g s . ******** F r e d / Session 3 B : N a r r a t i v e I l l u s t r a t i o n s W r i t t e n In the summer I played f o o t b a l l f o r the Renfrew Trojoan. I t was ok. When I played I played pass r e c e i v e r . A r e c e i v e r i s a person whow ca t c h the b a l l f a r a touch down. When the r e c e i v e r makes a touch down. The f i e l d goal team comes out to kick the ex t r a p o i n t . The best game I plaed was a Saterday a f t e r n o o n . We had a game a g a i n s t the Salans. The l a s t 10 - minutes of the whole game the quarter back passed the b a l l to me so I s t a r t e d f o r the g o a l . When I got there I was Ju s t about t a c k l e d and I made the winning touch down. When I got a c r o s s the goal l i n e I was a l l e x c i t e d about i t . I t was the beast game we played because we won. Then I went home and t o l d my mom. Or a l In the summer, I played football for the Renfrew Trojans. I' ve . . no . . When I played, I played pass receiver. A receiver is a person who catches the ball for a touchdown. After the receiver makes the touch down, the field goal team, the field goal team comes out an' kicks the . . kicks t h' . . kicks for an extra point . . umm . . poi nt . . The . . The last ten minutes of the whole game, the quarterback passed t he ball to me . . so I started for t he goal line an' before I got to the goal line, I was just about tackled an' . . and made the winning touchdown. Then I went home to tell my Mom. T o t a l words = 132 T o t a l words = 96 143 F r e d / Session 4 B : Academic I l l u s t r a t i o n s W r i t t e n I say the Native people s o u l d get there land clames back, because the land i s r i g h t f u l l y t h e r e s . I t would be b e t t e r because the Na t i v e people c o u l d do a l o t more on there l a n d . Whitout the Government b r e a t i n g doun there necks f o r doing somthing wrong on the land L i k e f i s i n g i f you were t o go f i s h i n g and i f you got a l o t you wanted to s e l l some You would get charged because the Gvernment b'a'n'd'/ made a law that i f you got a l o t of f i s h you had to eat i t . You wernt aloud to s e l l i t . Well I saw the la n d i s r i g h l f u l l y the Native people. But mothere Nature c o u l d Ka'd' have c r e a t e d the world, mabe i t c r e a t e d i t s e l f . O r a l s the n a t i v e people were here f i r s t , people say the Chinese and European people were the f i r s t . But i t i s hard to say. maybe Nature c r e a t e d people on c e r t a i n p a r t ' s of the world. I t i s hard to say because no one knows how was here f i r s t . I t i s important f o r the N a t i v e people to get there land claims back, b'e'szfa'yis'e' ar e l e s e i t w i l l be to l a t e . and the Government w i l l s t i l l run there l a n d . T o t a l words = 191 O r a l First I wrote about, about the Native people should get their land claims back, get their land claims back an' the fishing, an' sold before if they sold fish, they got charged. Mmm . . And I wrote about mmm . . which people were here first. Like Native, Europeans, or the Chinese people. An' that was it (15 seconds) . . An' about , an' t he t hi ng about the claims is just the Native people s hould get thei r I and claims back or else the government will s t i l l run t hei r I and. T o t a l words = 74 ******** 144 Whereas the c h r o n o l o g i c a l sequencing of events from Fred's p e r s o n a l experience are r e l a t i v e l y easy f o r him to r e c a l l , he s t r u g g l e s to remember h i s w r i t t e n argument by attempting to r e c a l l the sequencing of h i s argument r a t h e r than c o n c e n t r a t i n g on p r e s e n t i n g a c o n v i n c i n g argument to a l i s t e n e r . Other s u b j e c t s had s i m i l a r d i f f i c u l t i e s with the r e t e l l i n g of t h e i r academic w r i t i n g s . Those who had l e s s d i f f i c u l t y had thought about t h e i r arguments w i t h i n frameworks such as: advantages and disadvantages; then and now; i n t r o d u c t i o n , body and c o n c l u s i o n . Timed Word Counts. Another measure used to e l i c i t i n f o r m a t i o n about the r e l a t i v e ease of o r a l and w r i t t e n p r o d u c t i o n i n n a r r a t i v e and academic genres was the timing of word p r o d u c t i o n (See Table 4.7). Again, as with other measures, i t was evident that s u b j e c t s had more d i f f i c u l t y g e n e r a t i n g academic d i s c o u r s e than n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e , whether i n the w r i t t e n or o r a l mode. Although there i s v a r i a t i o n of numbers of words produced per minute on l i k e t asks performed by i n d i v i d u a l students, comparisons between l i k e n a r r a t i v e and academic tasks i n d i c a t e that only 7 out of 32 comparisons (4 o r a l and 3 w r i t t e n ) show more words produced i n the academic genre. These f i n d i n g s r e s u l t from comparing s e s s i o n s one ( n a r r a t i v e ) and two (academic); three ( n a r r a t i v e ) and four (academic). Thus the f i r s t n a r r a t i v e tasks are compared with the f i r s t academic tasks and the second n a r r a t i v e tasks are compared with the second academic t a s k s . T a b l e 4.7: Words P r o d u c e d P e r M i n u t e ' N a r r a t i v e Academic S e s s i o n One S e s s i o n T h r e e S e s s i o n Two S e s s i o n F o u r S u b j e c t s O r a l W r i t t e n O r a l W r i t t e n O r a l W r i t t e n O r a l W r i t t e n Ma 1 e s Ed 104 . 37 7 . , 17 47 .67 12 .55 6 0 .73 6 .78 *82. .90 9 . 13 Rob 162 .54 10. , 72 175 . 15 13, .55 1 18 .80 6 .06 104, .30 8 .97 F r e d 143 . 33 7 , .43 108 .67 5 .69 118 .50 5 .84 *1 16 . 84 *5 .93 G r e g 105 .05 13. . 1 1 113 .02 8 .75 93 . 33 8 .00 64 .61 *10 . 5 0 Fema1es C a r o l e 57 . .49 12. 46 106. .50 13 .63 49. .54 *13 .69 73, . 1 1 13 . 50 Sh i r e e n 159. .90 12. ,58 139. .90 1 1 .04 * *0 .00 6 .40 * 151 , .90 5 . , 22 Nan 146, .35 16. .40 103. .88 9. .97 71 , .54 5 .06 * 1 0 5 , .36 7 . 80 D e n i s e 132, .88 12 . 13 91 . .49 15 . 47 106 . .90 6 .70 87 . .96 1 1 . , 73 W r i t t e n c a l c u l a t i o n s a r e t o t h e n e a r e s t 30 s e c o n d s . O r a l c a l c u l a t i o n s a r e t o t h e n e a r e s t 1.5 s e c o n d s . * M o r e w o r d s p r o d u c e d i n a c a d e m i c t a s k ** T a s k n o t d o n e . NO > AO W+ = 21 p = .0162 NW > AW W+ = 12 p = .0041 146 These f i n d i n g s were c a l c u l a t e d to the nearest h a l f minute i n the w r i t t e n mode and more a c c u r a t e l y , to the nearest 1.5 seconds i n the o r a l mode. T h i s d i s c r e p a n c y was unavoidable as both c a l c u l a t i o n s i n c l u d e pause times which were e v i d e n t l y used f o r ge n e r a t i n g d i s c o u r s e content. A l s o , the taperecorded o r a l p r o d u c t i o n s are more c l e a r l y s i g n a l e d as completed than the hand-recorded w r i t t e n p r o d u c t i o n s . T h i s d i s c r e p a n c y may account f o r a small i n c r e a s e of p r o p o r t i o n i n the o r a l mode but these f i n d i n g s r e f l e c t the gener a l f i n d i n g s i n the re s e a r c h l i t e r a t u r e (Chafe 1982). I t i s important to note that f a l s e s t a r t s and r e p e t i t i o n s i n the o r a l mode were not counted f o r the purposes of t h i s measure as they were not evident i n the w r i t t e n mode. I t i s a l s o of i n t e r e s t to note that d e s p i t e the apparent ease with which the o r a l d i s c o u r s e was generated r e l a t i v e to the w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , most of the s u b j e c t s were able to produce more words i n the w r i t t e n mode (See Table 4.5). Pause Times. Pause times evident throughout both the w r i t i n g process and the r e t e l l i n g process were another u n i t of a n a l y s i s used to examine the r e l a t i v e ease of pr o d u c t i o n of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , both n a r r a t i v e and academic (See Table 4.8). Pauses occu r r e d more f r e q u e n t l y d u r i n g the process of generating o r a l d i s c o u r s e than w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , even though the d i s c o u r s e was not spontaneous ( i . e . , i t i s a r e t e l l i n g of a p r e v i o u s l y w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e ) . On average, 147 Table 4.8: R a t i o s of T o t a l Pause Times and T o t a l Words N a r r a t i v e Academic W r i t t e n O r a l W r i t t e n O r a l 1:40.29 1:15.53 1:27.24 1:10.76 su b j e c t s paused a f t e r every 10+ words d u r i n g t h e i r academic r e t e l l i n g s and they paused a f t e r every 27+ words d u r i n g t h e i r academic w r i t i n g . On average, s u b j e c t s paused a f t e r every 15+ words d u r i n g t h e i r n a r r a t i v e r e t e l l i n g s and they paused a f t e r every 40+ words d u r i n g t h e i r n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g . Pause times occurred more f r e q u e n t l y when students were gene r a t i n g academic d i s c o u r s e , whether i n the o r a l or w r i t t e n mode. Duration of Pause Times. The lengths of the pause times vary; however, a higher p r o p o r t i o n are of longer d u r a t i o n i n the w r i t t e n mode and i n the academic genre, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . Pauses evident w i t h i n the p r o d u c t i o n of o r a l n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e are c o n s i s t e n t l y s h o r t e r i n d u r a t i o n than the pauses in any other combination of mode and genre. While Table 4.9 i n d i c a t e s that 99.53% of these pauses were 10 seconds or l e s s i n d u r a t i o n , a f u r t h e r breakdown r e v e a l s that 89.6% of the pauses i n t h i s category were 1 - 3 seconds in d u r a t i o n . The h i g h e s t p r o p o r t i o n of pauses evident i n the p r o d u c t i o n of o r a l academic d i s c o u r s e i s a l s o w i t h i n the 148 1 - 3 second range at 72.98% but t h i s p r o p o r t i o n i s 16.62 percentage p o i n t s l e s s than the n a r r a t i v e . Table 4. 9: D u r a t i o n of Pause Times O r a l and W r i t t e n Comparisons Narrat ive Academic Time Wr i t t e n O r a l W r i t t e n O r a l (seconds) (T=142) (T=462) (T=124) (T=211) 0 - 1 0 20.42% 99.53% 3.22% 98. 10% 1 1 - 20 59.85% .42% 71.77% .94% 21 - 30 14.08% .50% 17.74% .94% 31 + 5.62% 0.00% 7.24% 0.00% The pauses of longest d u r a t i o n o c c u r r e d d u r i n g C a r o l e ' s academic r e t e l l i n g ; she paused once f o r 18 seconds and another time f o r 27 seconds. C a r o l e a l s o e x h i b i t e d three other long pauses, one of 8 - 11 seconds d u r i n g the same academic r e t e l l i n g , and two d u r i n g her f i r s t n a r r a t i v e r e t e l l i n g (7 - 10 and 12 - 14 seconds). Only two other students e x h i b i t e d three other pause times longer than 6 seconds i n d u r a t i o n d u r i n g t h e i r r e t e l l i n g s . Nan, the 15 year o l d female with r e l a t i v e l y good s k i l l s , paused f o r 11 seconds d u r i n g her f i r s t acdemic r e t e l l i n g ; Greg, the 16 year o l d male student, paused f o r 7 - 1 0 seconds and 8 - 11 seconds d u r i n g n a r r a t i v e r e t e l l i n g s that were of c o n s i d e r a b l e l e n g t h . 149 A number of f a c t o r s p l a y upon determining the l e n g t h of a pause time while g e n e r a t i n g o r a l d i s c o u r s e . These s u b j e c t s were not only pausing to remember the content of what they had w r i t t e n and how i t had been organized but i n some cases they wanted to e l a b o r a t e on what they had w r i t t e n and they paused to compose new t e x t . C u l t u r a l f a c t o r s a l s o i n f l u e n c e the l e n g t h of pause times. Research with Athapaskan Native peoples suggests that one of the sources of c o n f l i c t i n the communications between these Native peoples and non-Native peoples i s a d i f f e r i n g tempo of speech and a d i f f e r i n g allowance f o r thought between v e r b a l exchanges. Speakers of European o r i g i n s are observed to g i v e one another l i t t l e time f o r s i l e n c e w i t h i n a communication; i f a speaker pauses f o r more than a few seconds, the l i s t e n e r i s cued to become the speaker. Athapaskan peoples allow f o r longer p e r i o d s of s i l e n c e and thought time than i s comfortable to speakers of European o r i g i n s ( S c o l l o n and S c o l l o n 1981). C a r o l e , age 18, who e x h i b i t e d the longest pause times, had l i v e d most of her l i f e i n northern B r i t i s h Columbia among her Haida people. Pause times that o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the composing s e s s i o n s were not n e c e s s a r i l y times of c o n c e n t r a t i o n on the task at hand but when they were, the s u b j e c t s focused t h e i r a t t e n t i o n on s e n t e n c e - l e v e l c o n s t r u c t i o n s of 'what to write next' much as Pianko's u n s k i l l e d w r i t e r s were i n c l i n e d to do (Pianko 1977). More mature ( s k i l l e d ) w r i t e r s appear to have more awareness of the needs of a reading audience and are 150 l i k e l y to be as concerned with the shaping of t h e i r d i s c o u r s e as i t s content. These w r i t e r s are a l s o more l i k e l y to have longer pause times i n order to c o n s i d e r r h e t o r i c a l i s s u e s w i t h i n a broader conceptual u n i t of whole d i s c o u r s e (Flower and Hayes 1981). Although the Outreach s u b j e c t s d i d not have the r h e t o r i c a l or conceptual s k i l l s of mature w r i t e r s , the p a t t e r n s and the d u r a t i o n of t h e i r pause times suggest that t h e i r c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g s k i l l s were c h a l l e n g e d d u r i n g the academic t a s k s , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . These s u b j e c t s were able to produce fewer words in the academic genre, they paused more f r e q u e n t l y ( i . e . , a f t e r fewer words were w r i t t e n ) and t h e i r pauses were of longer d u r a t i o n d u r i n g the academic t a s k s . T h i s f i n d i n g r e f l e c t s the f i n d i n g of Matsuhashi (1981) whose secondary school s u b j e c t s , who were s k i l l e d w r i t e r s , paused 5 seconds longer per T - u n i t when w r i t i n g persuasion or g e n e r a l i z a t i o n than when r e p o r t i n g or n a r r a t i n g . At the same time, while these f i n d i n g s suggest that the s u b j e c t s had more d i f f i c u l t y g e n e r a t i n g academic d i s c o u r s e than n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e , the o v e r a l l f i n d i n g s a l s o i n d i c a t e t h a t the s u b j e c t s had more d i f f i c u l t y g e n e r a t i n g o r a l d i s c o u r s e than w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , whether n a r r a t i v e or academic. I t appeared that w r i t i n g p r o v i d e d them with the thought time that was more s u i t e d to t h e i r own t h i n k i n g processes than o r a l composing, even when r e t e l l i n g what they had w r i t t e n to a f a m i l i a r audience of one. T h i s was p a r t i c u l a r l y e v i d e n t d u r i n g the academic r e t e l l i n g s . 151 Comparisons of Oral and Wr i t t e n Products S t r u c t u r a l comparisons of the o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e of the s u b j e c t s i n d i c a t e that t h e i r w r i t t e n products share many f e a t u r e s that are s i m i l a r to t h e i r o r a l performances when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r c o n t e x t , audience and genre. R h e t o r i c a l o r g a n i z a t i o n , l e x i c a l items, and syntax appear to be more i n d i c a t i v e of genre than o r a l or w r i t t e n mode. R h e t o r i c a l O r g a n i z a t i o n : N a r r a t i v e . The s u b j e c t s had l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y with the o v e r a l l o r g a n i z a t i o n of t h e i r p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e s . They had the sense of ' t e l l i n g the whole s t o r y ' from beginning to end and the c h r o n o l o g i c a l sequencing of events p r o v i d e d a n a t u r a l s t r u c t u r e f o r t h e i r n a r r a t i v e s . The words and phrases which were used to frame the events of t h e i r n a r r a t i v e s were t i m e - o r i e n t e d . The f i r s t day .. Then . . We used to go and hunt every end of the l e a s t three months of the year . . An' that was i t ... When I f i r s t went back ... Before . . . I had a good time ... When ... then .. I remember the day . . As the day passed .. My h o l i d a y was over ... Before I moved .. In the middle of September .. I might go back t h i s summer .. In the summer .. When .. Saturday afternoon .. Last ten minutes .. Then . . One n i g h t .. So we went . . Then .. When . . One n i g h t while .. So next morning .. A f t e r that .. Then a l l of a sudden .. Th i s was the time when .. Now .. so .. while .. When .. I would stay .. About two weeks before Christmas I went . . My dad had . . My mom only used .. When I went . . When . . For the f i r s t time .. Afterward .. About a week l a t e r . . It was i n June .. Through the whole summer .. I t ' s now October .. Every F r i d a y .. A f t e r . . Then .. When . . A l l my l i f e When .. So one day .. Before t h i s time .. The age I was when .. While I was out there .. When I went .. Then when a few hours had passed So on the second day .. During the middle of the week .. 153 T h i s framework of time-sequenced events p r o v i d e d a means of shaping the content of the w r i t i n g i n a cohesive way that 'makes sense.' T h i s framework was e q u a l l y u s e f u l i n h e l p i n g the s u b j e c t s to r e t e l l t h e i r n a r r a t i v e o r a l l y : It was in winter time . . Then . . . In grade one . . That' s about i t . . When I first went up there . . And after grade seven . . We were helping them for a while . . I remember the day . . As the day passed and my holiday was over . . The first time we moved here . . In t he summer . . When . . After The last ten minutes . . So . . Before . . Then . . An' t hen . . So t hen . , That's the first thing we did . . Then after a while . . Then . . t hat was it . . So t hen . . 50 when . . When . . Then . . A l i t t l e whiIe I at er . . Through the whole summer . . 51 nee June . . Now . . An' t hat ' s it . . Everyday . . or every Friday . . When . . And t hen . . After we finish . . While . . look forward . . One day . . I was thirteen . . So t hey s e nt me . . 154 So I went . . And the first day we got there . . Second day . . Lunch time . . Night t i me . . Then on our last night . . During the o r a l r e t e l l i n g of the n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g , s u b j e c t s had a f u r t h e r advantage of being a b l e to frame in f o r m a t i o n with d i r e c t address to the audience, the res e a r c h e r . The s u b j e c t s would engage the r e s e a r c h e r ' s i n t e r e s t i n the r e t e l l i n g through steady eye co n t a c t as w e l l as the o c c a s i o n a l d i r e c t address. You see . . Well, like I said yesterday . . . Carole used t h i s method of engaging the involvement of her reader as w e l l . In w r i t i n g of an experience she had with Native people a c r o s s the pr o v i n c e at a week long carnp, she wrote: I t hi nk you woul d I i ke i t a I ot . R h e t o r i c a l O r g a n i z a t i o n : Academic. The s u b j e c t s had much more d i f f i c u l t y framing t h e i r academic arguments. However, once they had a ba s i c understanding of what was expected of them i n g e n e r a t i n g an academic argument, and they become con c e n t r a t e d on the task, the frameworks that emerged r e f l e c t e d the mental a c t i v i t y r e q u i r e d to formulate t h e i r p o s i t i o n s and arguments. 155 My essays going to be about the l i f e i n d i a n s would have i f whiteman never a r r i v e d .. I .. But .. I a l s o b e l i e v e .. I know f o r a f a c t .. I t h i n k .. because .. but .. Maybe (Not a l l ) .. In some p l a c e s .. but then again .. Sometimes .. when .. but .. I t h i n k .. I t h i n k .. because .. but .. So .. I think .. In some ways i t was b e t t e r .. If .. a l s o .. or .. then again .. Maybe .. If .. Besides .. on e i t h e r s i d e ... I t h i n k ... Now the disadvantages .. My c o n c l u s i o n .. I say i t was b e t t e r .. I say the Native people should get t h e i r .. I t h i n k . . I f . . . My o p i n i o n s .. .. depends .. I t h i n k .. If .. So .. . T h i s essay i s about .. I t h i n k .. If So s i n c e .. Because .. So t h i s i s how .. The reason why .. I don't understand ... Three of the s u b j e c t s i n c o r p o r a t e d n a r r a t i v e frameworks i n t o t h e i r f i r s t p i e c e s of academic w r i t i n g . So nowadays ... Long time ago .. Back i n the o l d days .. 156 The t o p i c l e n t i t s e l f to t h i s borrowing of f a m i l i a r n a r r a t i v e frameworks as the s u b j e c t s were expected to c o n s i d e r whether they thought the l i f e was b e t t e r f o r N a t i v e people before the whiteman a r r i v e d i n Canada. Time-r e f e r e n c e d frameworks are necessary f o r h i s t o r i c a l arguments even i f the phraseology of these students was more s u i t e d to s t o r y t e l l i n g . Although these s u b j e c t s used n a r r a t i v e f e a t u r e s i n t h e i r academic w r i t i n g , each of them understood the e x p e c t a t i o n of the assignment. T h i s i s r e f l e c t e d i n the other phrases used throughout t h e i r p i e c e s of academic w r i t i n g . I think .. For some reason . . I guess The reason why I t h i n k .. Because .. Some .. I t h i n k i t i s important .. Because .. The important reason .. In other words .. What I mean .. If As long as .. I think While most of the s u b j e c t s had d i f f i c u l t y r e t e l l i n g t h e i r n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g s , each of them had more d i f f i c u l t y r e t e l l i n g t h e i r academic w r i t i n g . Most of them attempted to remember the order i n which they had w r i t t e n t h e i r arguments and made repeated r e f e r e n c e to t h e i r w r i t i n g . T h i s d i d not occur d u r i n g the r e t e l l i n g of t h e i r n a r r a t i v e s . They a l s o more f r e q u e n t l y framed t h e i r academic r e t e l l i n g s i n n a r r a t i v e frameworks than they had i n t h e i r w r i t i n g . 157 / wrote that 'In the past . . If . . becaus e . . 'In the future . . because . . I just wish we s t i l l lived that way. The begi nni ng I put . . I di dn't t hi nk . . If . . ' caus e . . That's all I can remember . . Let's pretend . . we're way back . . Once in a whi I e . . You'd probably see . . But now . . I just wrote what they could do . . I wrote what I mean by . . That' s alI I wr ot e I just wr ot e about . . . This morning when I went down to the store . . Why it is good . . If . . An' that's it . . . Well, first I wrote about back then . . Now . . An' that's it I for got t he end . . It goes I i ke t hi s You see Okay . . I guess it was okay . . because If it weren't for . . How far down? The whole thing? If . . then . . probably . . 'Cause . . That's all I put for that one . . This paragraph here . . If . . That ' s alI t hat' s about . . Period . . end of it . . I wrote if I thought it was good and I t hought . . . For the advantages I put . . So . That's a disadvantage . . But then . . So either way . . You know . . 158 It's about . . I mean . . if . . We coul d . . if That means . . That' s al I I wrote My essay's about how life would be if the whiteman never arrived in Canada. Becaus e . . I know t hat . . I think life would be better now . . because . . But . . Okay . . I think it' a a good idea . . I think it would . . cause some problems . . That's all I wrote for the advantages . . I wr ot e on how . . An' I wrote down . . I said . . Well, I was talking about the aboriginal rights . . If . . t hen . . an' t hat ' s it . . . Nonstandard L e x i c a l F e a t u r e s . Although t h i s study i s p r i m a r i l y concerned with students' attempts to c o n s t r u c t whole d i s c o u r s e u n i t s , i t may be of i n t e r e s t to i n c l u d e a b r i e f examination of the word and sentence l e v e l u n i t s w i t h i n the s u b j e c t s ' whole d i s c o u r s e u n i t s . For example, i t i s evident that the o r a l and w r i t t e n language of s i x of the su b j e c t s i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a number of nonstandard f e a t u r e s , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n c o n s i s t e n c y of verb tense and noun-verb agreement. O r a l Samples In the future . . the Native people's children would have been taken away. And we seen these four guys from Port Alberni. 159 There was too much people. You'd see a deer went by. We will get our land claims back if we had a Native government . . If I don't do it, I go out and see my s i s t e r . W r i t t e n Samples If we l i v e i n the past .. the food we eat l i k e seafoods e t c . would be a l l i n our blood .. There were only about twenty student ... We d i d n ' t t a l k i t out because J e s s i e s a i d to f o r g e t i t because one of us i s going to get h u r t . T h e i r i s h a r d l y any Indians doing t h i n g s b i g l i k lawers ... It depends what kinds of people there i s .. I phoned my s i s t e r Teresa i f I c o u l d go see her. T h i s p a r t i c u l a r nonstandard f e a t u r e was l i k e w i s e observed i n the o r a l and w r i t t e n language samples of school c h i l d r e n from two Native Indian communities i n New Mexico (Wolfram et al. 1979). While the concern of the authors of that study were that t e a c h e r s l e a r n to d i s c r i m i n a t e between ' e r r o r s ' and ' d i f f e r e n c e s ' r o o t e d i n d i a l e c t , the i n t e r e s t of t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n was r a t h e r to f i n d i n d i c a t i o n of whether those students who spoke with nonstandard f e a t u r e s might be i n h i b i t e d i n t h e i r w r i t i n g processes because of t h e i r fear of w r i t i n g e r r o r s (Epes, 1985). As w i l l be d i s c u s s e d i n Chapter F i v e , i t was evident that most of the su b j e c t s c o n c e n t r a t e d on s u r f a c e l e v e l appearances and sentence l e v e l c o n s t r u c t i o n s r a t h e r than 160 whole d i s c o u r s e c o n s t r u c t i o n s . However, out of a t o t a l of 508 independent e d i t i n g b e haviors, only f i f t e e n were concerned with verb c h o i c e (See Table 5.1). F u r t h e r , none of the s u b j e c t s ' q u e s t i o n s r e g a r d i n g s p e l l i n g s or word c h o i c e i n v o l v e d verbs. There was no evidence that the s u b j e c t s were concerned about the nonstandard d i a l e c t f e a t u r e s that appeared i n t h e i r w r i t i n g . These f e a t u r e s were an i n t e g r a l p a r t of t h e i r language, and the s u b j e c t s seemed unaware that they used unconventional verb forms. T h e i r w r i t i n g processes were more thwarted by t h e i r u n c e r t a i n t i e s about s p e l l i n g s , which they knew to be of concern to t e a c h e r s . S y n t a c t i c Complexity. Hunt's t - u n i t measure (an independent c l a u s e and i t s subordinate elements) was used as an index to analyze the s y n t a c t i c s t r u c t u r e s of the best performance samples of the s u b j e c t s ' n a r r a t i v e and academic d i s c o u r s e (31 o r a l samples/32 w r i t t e n samples). As the t - u n i t has been e s t a b l i s h e d as a r e l i a b l e developmental measure as w e l l as a d e s c r i p t i v e measure of genre f e a t u r e s , t - u n i t a n a l y s i s p r o v i d e d a means of both l o c a t i n g the s k i l l l e v e l s of the case study s u b j e c t s w i t h i n a broadened p o p u l a t i o n , and a means of determining whether the s u b j e c t s ' s y n t a c t i c a l p a t t e r n s were s i m i l a r l y d i f f e r e n t i a t e d a c r o s s genre (Crowhurst 1980; Crowhurst and Piche 1979; Hunt 1965). While the t - u n i t measure was o r i g i n a l l y developed by Hunt (1965) f o r the purpose of measuring s y n t a c t i c complexity i n 161 w r i t t e n sentence s t r u c t u r e , i t has been shown to be e f f e c t i v e as a measure of the s y n t a c t i c complexity of o r a l sentence s t r u c t u r e s as w e l l (Loban 1976; O'Donnell et al. 1967). Thus, the t - u n i t was c o n s i d e r e d to be a v a l u a b l e measure f o r examining genre d i f f e r e n c e s a c r o s s o r a l and w r i t t e n modes. A l l c a l c u l a t i o n s were checked by a second r a t e r and disagreements were d i s c u s s e d i n order to a r r i v e at agreement. F a l s e s t a r t s and r e p e t i t i o n s were e l i m i n a t e d from the t - u n i t a n a l y s i s as i n the O'Donnell study and t i t l e word counts were e l i m i n a t e d i n the w r i t t e n samples as they c o u l d not be i n d i c a t i v e of syntax s t r u c t u r e . Although the f i n d i n g s r e f l e c t concerns that have been r a i s e d regarding the s t a b i l i t y of the t - u n i t f o r i n d i v i d u a l assessments (Witte 1983), t h i s measure p r o v i d e s i n f o r m a t i o n about the s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n language competencies that would otherwise not be forthcoming. The a n a l y s i s i n d i c a t e s that the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e i s s y n t a c t i c a l l y d i f f e r e n t i a t e d a c r o s s genre ( n a r r a t i v e and academic) i n the w r i t t e n mode. F i f t e e n of s i x t e e n w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e samples were more s y n t a c t i c a l l y complex i n the academic genre. T h i s f i n d i n g r e f l e c t s o t h e r s ' more broad based f i n d i n g s that more complex s y n t a c t i c a l f e a t u r e s w i l l emerge from the the demands of w r i t i n g in academic genres (argument, i n p a r t i c u l a r ) than the demands of w r i t i n g i n n a r r a t i v e genres (Crowhurst and Piche 1979; Crowhurst 1980). Ten of f i f t e e n o r a l d i s c o u r s e samples were 162 l i k e w i s e more s y n t a c t i c a l l y complex i n the academic genre. However, these r e s u l t s are l e s s c l e a r . (See Table 4.10). The f i n d i n g s of t h i s study f u r t h e r suggest that genre may have a compounding e f f e c t when making comparative analyses of the s y n t a c t i c complexity of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e samples. While the same number of n a r r a t i v e samples were more s y n t a c t i c a l l y complex i n each of the o r a l and w r i t t e n modes (8/16), ten of f i f t e e n (10/15) of the academic samples were found to be more s y n t a c t i c a l l y complex in the w r i t t e n mode than the o r a l mode. The n a r r a t i v e r e s u l t s are i n l i n e with the f i n d i n g s of O'Donnell et al. (1965) who observed that the o r a l and w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e s of t h e i r grade 7 s u b j e c t s were not s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t i a t e d when measuring s y n t a c t i c complexity. The mean number of words per t - u n i t f o r the o r a l and w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e s of those s u b j e c t s was 9.8 and 9.9, r e s p e c t i v e l y , whereas the mean number of words per t - u n i t f o r the o r a l and w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e s of the Outreach s u b j e c t s was 10.60 and 11.69, r e s p e c t i v e l y (see Table 4.11). Loban's (1976) f i n d i n g s were s i m i l a r at the grades 7 - 9 l e v e l . At grade 8, f o r example, the mean number of words per t - u n i t i n h i s o r a l and w r i t t e n samples was 10.6 and 10.36, r e s p e c t i v e l y . In the upper secondary grades (10 - 12), the mean number of words per t - u n i t i n Loban's o r a l and w r i t t e n samples became more d i f f e r e n t i a t e d , however. By grade 12, the number of words per t - u n i t i n the w r i t t e n samples was T a b l e 4 .10 : Compar isons of S y n t a c t i c C o m p l e x i t y (words pe r t - u n i t ) ' Narrative Academic S e s s i o n One S e s s i o n Three S e s s i o n Two S e s s i o n Four S u b j e c t s Ora l W r i t t e n Ora l W r i t t e n Ora l W r i t t e n O r a l W r i t t e n Ma 1 es Ed 8 . 1S 12 .44 1 1 . 55 8 . 74 19 . 22 14 . ,00 18 , . 10 14 . 28 Rob 12 .47 10. . 17 10 .46 10. , 14 12 .66 13 . , 27 1 1 , . 33 10 .82 F r e d 14 . 30 9. .55 10 .66 10. 15 13.83 1 1 . . 50 14 . 80 14 .69 Greg 12 .74 14 , .80 9 .60 15. ,77 1 1 .20 14 , 86 20. . 33 24 .00 Females C a r o l e 9 .85 15. .04 12 .67 15. ,78 15.00 16 . 14 12 . ,75 14 .83 Shi r e e n 13 . 33 1 1 . . 33 6 , 40 9 . 41 ** 13 . ,71 12 . ,20 13, .41 Nan 8 . 18 9, .05 9 .87 8. ,79 9.87 10. .42 12. .80 13 .00 Den i se 13 .59 13 , 23 8 .67 10. 85 10.28 16. ,97 15. ,56 16, .57 * * Task not done. NO < AO W+ = 32 p = .0664 NW < AW W+ = 3 p = .0008 164 higher than the number of words per t - u n i t i n the o r a l samples, 12.86 and 11.52, r e s p e c t i v e l y . T h i s change i n r e l a t i v e numbers of words per t - u n i t i n o r a l and w r i t t e n samples may have r e f l e c t e d d i f f e r e n c e s i n the o r a l and w r i t t e n tasks performed at d i f f e r e n t grade l e v e l s as i t i s l i k e l y that more of the o r a l and w r i t t e n tasks i n Loban's upper grade samples were of an academic nature. Loban d i d not c o n t r o l f o r genre. It appeared that genre was an important f a c t o r i n i n f l u e n c i n g the r e l a t i v e number of t - u n i t s produced i n the o r a l and w r i t t e n samples of the Outreach s u b j e c t s . Whereas the n a r r a t i v e samples were very s i m i l a r , these s u b j e c t s produced more words per t - u n i t i n the w r i t t e n samples than the o r a l samples in the academic genre, 14.29 and 13.29, r e s p e c t i v e l y (see Table 4.11). Table 4.11: Mean Comparisons of S y n t a c t i c Complexity (Measured by number of words per t - u n i t ) N a r r a t i v e Academic Wr i t t e n O r a l W r i t t e n O r a l Mean 1 1 .39 10.60 14.29 1 3.29 The t - u n i t a n a l y s i s f u r t h e r i n d i c a t e s that the Outreach s u b j e c t s were i n p o s s e s s i o n of s y n t a c t i c a l o p t i o n s s i m i l a r to those of broader r e s e a r c h p o p u l a t i o n s of students i n 165 secondary grades 8 - 10. The mean number of words per t - u n i t e vident i n t h e i r n a r r a t i v e samples i s comparable to Loban's grade 10 samples (10.60 compared to 10.81 i n o r a l samples and 11.39 compared to 11.80 i n w r i t t e n samples). T h e i r academic samples d i s p l a y more words per t - u n i t than Loban's grade 10 samples (13.29 compared to 10.81 i n o r a l samples and 14.29 compared to 11.80 i n w r i t t e n samples) (Loban 1976, p. 35). The mean number of words per t - u n i t evident i n the Outreach w r i t i n g samples compare somewhat l e s s favourably with Crowhurst's g e n r e - c o n t r o l l e d grade 10 w r i t i n g samples (11.39 compared to 12.48 i n n a r r a t i v e samples and 14.29 compared to 15.17 i n argument (academic) samples) (Crowhurst 1980, p. 10). They produced almost i d e n t i c a l numbers of words per t - u n i t as the grade 8 p o p u l a t i o n of B r i t i s h Columbia students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n the 1978 B.C. W r i t i n g Assessment, but on l y i n the o p i n i o n (academic) samples (14.29 compared to 14.30). In the n a r r a t i v e samples, the Outreach s u b j e c t s produced c o n s i d e r a b l y more words per t - u n i t than t h i s p o p u l a t i o n (11.39 compared to 9.8) (Conry and Rodgers 1978, p. 55). While i t i s only p o s s i b l e to s p e c u l a t e that the Outreach s u b j e c t s , as a group, were performing at about a grade 9 l e v e l of s y n t a c t i c m a t u r i t y , i t i s evident that they were ab l e to produce d i v e r s e s y n t a c t i c a l s t r u c t u r e s i n response to the d i v e r s e language demands of two d i s t i n c t genres of d i s c o u r s e , whether i n the o r a l or w r i t t e n mode. 166 Although a l l of these students were u n f a m i l i a r with the purposes and conventions of academic d i s c o u r s e , l i k e other u n s k i l l e d w r i t e r s , most were a b l e to generate the more s y n t a c t i c a l l y complex o r a l and w r i t t e n language that was demanded by the nature of academic tasks (Cayer and Sacks 1979). However, i t was a l s o e v i d e n t that whereas these students were l i t t l e bothered by the s t r u c t u r a l elements of n a r r a t i v e , they were c h a l l e n g e d by t h e i r attempts to generate the s t r u c t u r a l elements of academic d i s c o u r s e . They put much more e f f o r t i n t o the c o n s t r u c t i o n of t h e i r academic w r i t i n g and through t h i s process they appeared to become much more aware of l i n g u i s t i c s t r u c t u r e s . I'm just trying to think of how to say it . . I was t r yi n' to think how I should put 'em . . I can think of something really quick 'cause my mind's on whatever . . it takes me a couple seconds and t hen I got everything or gani zed. I can't think what to write next . . evrything's screwed up in my head . . I can't explain it . . I just don't know how to put 'em (thoughts) in words . . I wanted it to make sense down there . . and I changed quite a bit of the words. I t was evident i n the comparative analyses of the s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e samples that they share many s i m i l a r f e a t u r e s , when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r genre. One of these f e a t u r e s i s s y n t a c t i c a l s t r u c t u r e . 167 Assessments of Cohesive Q u a l i t i e s . Each of the s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n samples was assessed f o r i t s cohesive q u a l i t i e s u sing the c r i t e r i a of c o r r e c t l y used syntax, a p p r o p r i a t e use of pronouns and c o n j u n c t i o n s , s e q u e n t i a l n a r r a t i v e or l o g i c a l p r e s e n t a t i o n of argument. Each sample was assessed to be r e l a t i v e l y cohesive (+) or not cohesive (-) by two independent a s s e s s o r s . The few disagreements were r e s o l v e d by d i s c u s s i o n . I t was determined that a l l but two of the s u b j e c t s were abl e to produce cohesive n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n (See Table 4.12). A l l w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e s and a l l but three o r a l n a r r a t i v e samples were determined to be c o h e s i v e . The o r a l n a r r a t i v e samples that were determined not to be cohesive were produced by C a r o l e and Shireen who expressed that they d i d not l i k e to t a l k . The samples of academic d i s c o u r s e were l e s s c o h e s i v e , although the w r i t t e n samples were r a t e d more p o s i t i v e l y than the o r a l samples. While e i g h t of the s i x t e e n w r i t t e n samples were con s i d e r e d to be c o h e s i v e , none of the s i x t e e n o r a l samples was c o n s i d e r e d to be c o h e s i v e . I t i s l i k e l y that the s u b j e c t s had d i f f i c u l t y g e n e r a t i n g cohesive o r a l academic d i s c o u r s e because they had not yet developed a f a m i l i a r conceptual framework w i t h i n which t h e i r o p i n i o n s and arguments c o u l d be c o h e s i v e l y presented. I t i s evident that t h e i r f a m i l i a r i t y with 168 Table 4.12: Assessments of Cohesive Q u a l i t i e s ( + ) (-) T = Narrat ive W r i t t e n O r a l Academic W r i t t e n O r a l 16 0 16 1 3 3 16 8 8 16 0 16 1 6 X 2 (3) = 37.61 p = .0001 n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e frameworks helped them to s u s t a i n t h e i r o r a l r e t e l l i n g s and helped to provide a cohesive wholeness to t h e i r n a r r a t i v e s , whether w r i t t e n or o r a l . The f i n d i n g that fewer of the o r a l d i s c o u r s e samples c o u l d be d e s c r i b e d as cohesive i s congruent with Chafe's (1979) i l l u s t r a t i o n of the more i n t e g r a t i v e q u a l i t y of w r i t t e n t e x t than o r a l performance. Students' P r e f e r e n c e s : O r a l and Writ t e n In what ways are these students' stated preferences vis-a-vis oral and written discourse related to their performances in these modes, whether narrative or academi c? Six of the e i g h t s u b j e c t s expressed a pr e f e r e n c e f o r w r i t i n g . Easier to just write it down than talk about it. It's easier writing than t e l l i n g . Telling i t ? . . . . That . . . I don't think I could expl ai n . . . 169 If you goof, you don't feel embarrassed . . . you sit there an' you write and if you goof, i t ' s okay . . . I don't feel like telling stories when you ask . . . It seems when I talk I don't think very fast an' when I write, I can think like I was a thinker or s ome l hi n' . . . These background assessments c l e a r l y i n d i c a t e that most of the case study s u b j e c t s have experienced d i f f i c u l t y with the language and l i t e r a c y e x p e c t a t i o n s of t h e i r p u b l i c school classrooms and that while most of the s u b j e c t s have p o s i t i v e a t t i t u d e s towards w r i t i n g and rea d i n g a c t i v i t i e s i n the n a r r a t i v e genre, they are l e s s p o s i t i v e towards o r a l language a c t i v i t i e s , whether n a r r a t i v e or academic. These s t a t e d p r e f e r e n c e s r e f l e c t the s u b j e c t s ' o v e r a l l p a t t e r n s of gre a t e r f a c i l i t y i n the w r i t t e n mode and n a r r a t i v e genre. Without a l o n g i t u d i n a l f i e l d r e s e a r c h study of the language and l i t e r a c y f u n c t i o n s w i t h i n the home communities of these s u b j e c t s , i t i s only p o s s i b l e to spec u l a t e about the l i n k s between t h e i r home and scho o l language and l i t e r a c y b e h a v i o r s . However, s u b j e c t s d i d r e v e a l i n f o r m a t i o n that i n d i c a t e s that t h e i r f a m i l i a r i t y with n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e was r e i n f o r c e d in t h e i r homes whereas there was no i n d i c a t i o n that the s u b j e c t s were exposed to academic d i s c o u r s e w i t h i n t h e i r home environments. F i v e of the e i g h t s u b j e c t s had memories of being read to by o l d e r s i b l i n g s or a parent or grandparent when they were young c h i l d r e n . I t i s not p o s s i b l e to know the frequency of shared reading times or the kinds of i n t e r a c t i o n s that o c c u r r e d between the s u b j e c t s and t h e i r 1 70 c h i l d h o o d readers; however, none of the s u b j e c t s r e c a l l s having reading m a t e r i a l s i n t h e i r homes that were not concerned with s t o r y : whether news, biography, or f i c t i o n . The s u b j e c t s r e p o r t e d that at l e a s t one parent i n each household read novels and magazines f o r r e c r e a t i o n a l purposes, as w e l l as o c c a s i o n a l l y reading the newspaper. Th i s p r e f e r e n c e f o r n a r r a t i v e forms of d i s c o u r s e was a l s o evident i n the s u b j e c t s ' r e p o r t s of the w r i t i n g a c t i v i t i e s of other members of t h e i r f a m i l i e s . The home w r i t i n g a c t i v i t i e s of these students and t h e i r f a m i l i e s are p r i m a r i l y of a p e r s o n a l nature c o n c e i v e d w i t h i n a n a r r a t i v e framework: w r i t i n g i n d i a r i e s , w r i t i n g p e r s o n a l l e t t e r s , w r i t i n g s t o r i e s of one's own l i f e f o r purposes of s e l f - r e f l e c t i o n . A l l but one of the s u b j e c t s s a i d t h a t t h e i r mothers wrote l e t t e r s . Three of the e i g h t s u b j e c t s had s i s t e r s who l i k e d to w r i t e i n d i a r i e s . I t i s e v i d e n t that while w r i t i n g (and reading) a c t i v i t i e s do not dominate the d a i l y experiences of these students' households, they are a c t i v i t i e s which are taken f o r granted f o r the purposes of r e c r e a t i o n and i n t e r p e r s o n a l f u n c t i o n s . The p r e f e r e n c e f o r n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e i s not s u r p r i s i n g given that none of the s u b j e c t s ' parents had completed a secondary school education and the B r i t i s h Columbia c u r r i c u l u m does not begin to emphasize academic w r i t i n g s k i l l s u n t i l the l a s t three years of secondary s c h o o l . And i t i s not u n t i l grade twelve t h a t students are expected to begin w r i t i n g formal academic essays that 171 i n c o r p o r a t e the s k i l l s of report w r i t i n g with the s k i l l s of argument and a n a l y s i s . F u r t h e r , many of the teachings of t r a d i t i o n a l N a t i v e peoples are s t r u c t u r e d w i t h i n s t o r y frameworks. Although none of the s u b j e c t s c o u l d speak t h e i r N ative language, s i x of the e i g h t s u b j e c t s had memories of t h e i r grandparents or other r e l a t i v e s t e l l i n g them of t h e i r c u l t u r a l myths and legends. Summary of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s Key f i n d i n g s r e p o r t e d i n t h i s chapter a r e : 1. W r i t i n g assessments i n d i c a t e d that the ( n a r r a t i v e and opi n i o n ) w r i t i n g of the e i g h t Native Indian secondary students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study was not c o n s i d e r e d to be at 'an a c c e p t a b l e ' l e v e l f o r grade e i g h t students, although a l l of the s u b j e c t s were o l d enough to be beyond grade e i g h t . Reading assessments l i k e w i s e i n d i c a t e d that these s u b j e c t s ' s k i l l l e v e l s i n reading were not at l e v e l s c o n s i d e r e d to be w i t h i n a normative range f o r t h e i r age/grade l e v e l s . The mean reading l e v e l of the s u b j e c t s was grade 6.4 with a range of 4.2 - 8.9. T h i s range represented a delay of .1 7.8 years with a mean delay of 4.28 ye a r s . Although most (6/8) s u b j e c t s enjoyed reading novels and magazines, none of the students enjoyed academic reading of any kin d . 2. D e s p i t e d i f f i c u l t i e s with w r i t i n g , these students were more at ease with w r i t t e n performance than o r a l 172 performance, whether n a r r a t i v e or academic. They expressed a p r e f e r e n c e f o r w r i t i n g and were ab l e to perform b e t t e r i n w r i t i n g on word count measures, whether n a r r a t i v e or academic. These student s u b j e c t s were more at ease with the w r i t t e n composition and o r a l r e t e l l i n g s of n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e than academic ( e x p o s i t o r y and argument) d i s c o u r s e . T h e i r l a c k of f a m i l i a r i t y with academic d i s c o u r s e was apparent on a l l comparative measures: cohesion, word counts, words produced per minute, pauses, lengths of pauses. Comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n samples i n d i c a t e d that o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e share many l e x i c a l and s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e s when samples are c o n t r o l l e d f o r context, t o p i c , audience and genre. The d i s c o u r s e samples of these s u b j e c t s were d i f f e r e n t i a t e d by the q u a l i t y of cohesiveness (with w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i b e d as 'most cohesiv e ' and o r a l academic as ' l e a s t cohesive') but there was c o n s i d e r a b l e o v e r l a p of l e x i c a l , r h e t o r i c a l and s y n t a c t i c a l f e a t u r e s when making comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e a c r o s s n a r r a t i v e and academic genres. The s y n t a c t i c a l p a t t e r n s of these s u b j e c t s were s i m i l a r to those observed i n the n a r r a t i v e and academic (argument) w r i t i n g of broader p o p u l a t i o n s of students. T h e i r sentence s t r u c t u r e s were composed of more words per t - u n i t in the academic genre than the n a r r a t i v e genre, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . And 1 73 t h e i r s y n t a c t i c a l m a t u r i t y was comparable to that of broader rese a r c h p o p u l a t i o n s i n a grade 8 - 10 l e v e l range. 5. The f i n d i n g s f u r t h e r i n d i c a t e a r e l a t i o n s h i p between the processes and products of the s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . I t was evident that the processes of g e n e r a t i n g academic and n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e were d i f f e r e n t : s u b j e c t s produced fewer words per minute, paused more o f t e n , and paused longer d u r i n g the o r a l and w r i t t e n academic t a s k s . I m p l i c a t i o n s of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s The f i n d i n g s r e p o r t e d i n t h i s chapter i n d i c a t e that whereas classroom language theory promotes p r e - w r i t i n g o r a l language a c t i v i t i e s , i t i s e v i d e n t that some students, such as the Outreach students who p a r t i c i p a t e d as s u b j e c t s i n t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n , are not at ease with o r a l language performance, whether n a r r a t i v e or academic, and p r e f e r w r i t i n g as a means of g e n e r a t i n g and p r e s e n t i n g t h e i r i deas. The f i n d i n g s a l s o i n d i c a t e that these s u b j e c t s ' d i s c o u r s e s t r e n g t h was w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e and that t h i s mode and genre would provide the b a s i s from which o r a l n a r r a t i v e and o r a l and w r i t t e n academic language res o u r c e s would be developed. The f i n d i n g s f u r t h e r suggest that those students whose o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e p r e f e r e n c e s and s t r e n g t h s do not match the e x p e c t a t i o n s of a classroom are i n h i b i t e d i n t h e i r l e a r n i n g i f t e a c h e r s do not make i n s t r u c t i o n a l 174 a d a p t a t i o n s that w i l l enable them to a c q u i r e new language resources as extensions of t h e i r d i s c o u r s e s t r e n g t h s . The s t r u c t u r a l f i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e the importance of c o n t r o l l i n g f o r genre when making comparative statements about o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . These f i n d i n g s have i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r classroom teachers who might be more s e l e c t i v e of o r a l and w r i t t e n tasks a s s i g n e d to students i f there i s i n c r e a s e d awareness of the o v e r l a p s between modes. For example, i f a teacher's purpose i s to c h a l l e n g e students to extend t h e i r s y n t a c t i c a l o p t i o n s , she may d e f i n e complementary o r a l and w r i t t e n tasks f o r t h i s purpose. A f u r t h e r classroom i m p l i c a t i o n of the importance of d i s c r i m i n a t i n g between genres, whether o r a l or w r i t t e n , i s the importance of c o n s i d e r i n g time f a c t o r s when a s s i g n i n g n a r r a t i v e or academic t a s k s . I t i s evident that students who are u n f a m i l i a r with academic genre r e q u i r e c o n s i d e r a b l y more time to work on academic tasks than n a r r a t i v e t a s k s , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . 175 CHAPTER FIVE THE ACQUISITION OF ACADEMIC DISCOURSE: AN INTERACTIVE TALK-WRITE LEARNING PROCESS Int r o d u c t i o n There has been c o n s i d e r a b l e r e s e a r c h i n t e r e s t i n the academic w r i t i n g of students from m i n o r i t y c u l t u r e s s i n c e Mina Shaughnessy's (1977) p u b l i c a t i o n Errors and Expectations. While much of Shaughnessy's a n a l y s i s i s concerned with the d i f f i c u l t i e s e x h i b i t e d by "Basic W r i t e r s ' in t h e i r attempts to a c q u i r e the c o n v e n t i o n a l s u r f a c e f e a t u r e s of w r i t t e n academic d i s c o u r s e , i t i s a l s o concerned with the d i f f i c u l t i e s e x h i b i t e d i n t h e i r w r i t t e n attempts to a c q u i r e the p a t t e r n s of c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n which are v a l i d a t e d w i t h i n mainstream academic i n s t i t u t i o n s . We do not ... understand how people l e a r n to think or be l o g i c a l ... "thought" i s narrowly equated with those s t y l e s of t h i n k i n g and o r d e r i n g that dominate academic d i s c o u r s e ... the a b i l i t y to c o n c e p t u a l i z e must be d e f i n e d broadly enough to take i n t o account the d i f f e r e n t forms that c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n takes i n d i f f e r e n t c u l t u r e s and c l a s s e s . While i t i s obvious that the BW [Basic W r i t e r ' s ] essays we have beeen c o n s i d e r i n g are f a r from a c c e p t a b l e examples of academic essays, even the poorest of them can be seen to c o n t a i n p r o p o s i t i o n s that c o u l d lend themselves to development i n the academic s t y l e . (Shaughnessy 1977, p. 237) 176 W r i t i n g process r e s e a r c h which f o l l o w e d t h i s p u b l i c a t i o n has r e v e a l e d much about the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the processes and products of Basic W r i t e r s and other beginning c o l l e g e students (Pianko 1977; P e r l 1978; Sommers 1979). The f i n d i n g s of t h i s r e s e a r c h are i n agreement that students who are i n e x p e r i e n c e d with academic w r i t i n g have a great d e a l of d i f f i c u l t y c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g c o n v e n t i o n a l academic arguments. They p e r s o n a l i z e t h e i r arguments and have d i f f i c u l t y with g e n e r a l i z a t i o n and r e f e r e n c e to broader bases of knowledge. T h e i r concern f o r s u r f a c e l e v e l e r r o r s ' t r u n c a t e s ' t h e i r composing processes as t h e i r a t t e n t i o n i s focused on s e n t e n c e - l e v e l c o n s t r u c t i o n s r a t h e r than whole d i s c o u r s e c o n s t r u c t i o n . A recent study of the encoding ( d i s t i n c t from composing) processes of remedial c o l l e g e students i n d i c a t e s that nonstandard speakers are even more l i k e l y than standard speakers to be anxious about e r r o r s (Epes 1985). Other r e s e a r c h e r s i n t e r e s t e d i n the r e l a t i o n s h i p between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of language are concerned with c h i l d r e n ' s attempts to a c q u i r e the s k i l l s r e q u i r e d to generate s u s t a i n e d d i s c o u r s e and the e x p l i c i t language s t r u c t u r e s r e q u i r e d of autonomous t e x t (Olson 1977; B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia 1982). I t i s argued that w r i t i n g i s more d i f f i c u l t f o r students than speaking because they must make a t r a n s i t i o n from the c o n t e x t u a l i z e d language of di a l o g u e where much meaning i s i m p l i e d to the l i n g u i s t i c a l l y more demanding d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d language of w r i t i n g which 177 r e q u i r e s e x p l i c i t statement of meaning. Donald Graves (1983) maintains that the process of developing the language s k i l l s r e q u i r e d f o r e f f e c t i v e w r i t i n g i s comparable t o the process of de v e l o p i n g the language s k i l l s r e q u i r e d f o r e f f e c t i v e speaking. In a recent work, Graves i l l u s t r a t e s how the l e a r n i n g of beginning w r i t e r s i s f a c i l i t a t e d by a kind of ' s c a f f o l d i n g ' s i m i l a r to t h a t p r o v i d e d t o beginning speakers. I t was evident from p r e l i m i n a r y classroom o b s e r v a t i o n s that the case study s u b j e c t s would have d i f f i c u l t y with o r a l and w r i t t e n academic tasks that would be presented to them during the formal o b s e r v a t i o n a l s e s s i o n s and that a s c a f f o l d i n g process would be r e q u i r e d to a s s i s t these beginning speakers and w r i t e r s of academic d i s c o u r s e . Thus, i t was expected that t h e r e would be i n t e r a c t i o n between the s u b j e c t s and the researcher and that these i n t e r a c t i o n s would r e v e a l i n f o r m a t i o n r e g a r d i n g the r e l a t i o n s h i p between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e and the d i f f e r i n g demands of n a r r a t i v e and academic d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . T h i s i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e design was suggested by Sondra P e r l (1978) who had observed that her case study s u b j e c t s were not content to compose aloud to themselves but asked f o r her i n t e r v e n t i o n . While many i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between o r a l and w r i t t e n language are p r i m a r i l y concerned with s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e s , the primary concern of t h i s r e s e a r c h i n v e s t i g a t i o n has been to a c q u i r e i n s i g h t s that might h e l p 178 te a c h e r s to support the attempts of t h e i r nonacademic students to acq u i r e an understanding of the whole d i s c o u r s e demands of academic d i s c o u r s e . Thus, the a n a l y s i s presented i n t h i s chapter i s concerned with d e f i n i n g the o v e r l a p s between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e , whether n a r r a t i v e or academic, and the ways i n which students' language resources might be extended by b u i l d i n g from t h e i r s t r e n g t h s i n each of these modes and genres. Rather than p e r s i s t i n g i n comparing speech and w r i t i n g as they support i n t e l l e c t u a l development, we should h e l p students understand complementary r e l a t i o n s h i p s between the two modes that can help them as communicators throughout t h e i r l i f e t i m e s . We should t e l l students that our e f f o r t s to express both concrete and a b s t r a c t i d e a s , a n a l o g i c and a n a l y t i c arguments, e x p l i c a t i v e and e x p l o r a t o r y t h i n k i n g can be r e a l i z e d i n both speech and w r i t i n g . (Couture 1983, p. 141 ) Case Study Sessions In what ways are the writing processses and written products of these students influenced by the talk that occurred throughout the interactive talk-write sessions? Independent W r i t i n g Behaviors Although the f i n d i n g s i n t h i s chapter are p r i m a r i l y concerned with the i n f l u e n c e s of the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e p r o c e s s , these f i n d i n g s are more meaningful when examined i n l i g h t of the independent t a l k - w r i t e behaviors which were e x h i b i t e d by the s u b j e c t s d u r i n g the case study s e s s i o n s (see Table 5.1). The independent w r i t i n g behaviors e x h i b i t e d by the case study s u b j e c t s d u r i n g the t a l k - w r i t e 179 Table 5.1: Independent W r i t i n g B e h a v i o r s 1 N a r r a t i v e Composing R e v i s i o n Composing Academic R e v i s i o n T o t a l s P l a n n i n g PL 4 1 3 1 9 PLL 6 5 10 1 2 33 PLG 0 0 1 1 2 T o t a l s 10 6 1 4 14 (44) Pauses 1 04 42 79 60 (285) Reading Ra 10 1 1 1 1 6 38 Ra-b 22 37 22 34 1 15 RW 0 0 9 9 18 ROa 0 2 1 1 4 ROa-b 0 3 8 4 15 ROW 0 0 0 0 0 T o t a l s 32 53 51 54 (190) E d i t i n g ( a d d i n g / d e l e t i n g / s u b s t i t u t i n g ) E l 9 2 2 3 16 Ew 35 36 22 51 1 44 Eph 1 9 2 17 29 Es 1 10 1 14 26 E e l 0 3 0 0 3 Epunc 25 23 14 17 79 Eve 2 6 2 5 15 Epar 0 4 0 7 1 1 Ehand 1 1 10 8 15 44 Esp 38 36 26 41 141 T o t a l s 1 22 139 77 170 (508) These numbers were recorded d u r i n g s i x t y - f o u r o b s e r v a t i o n a l s e s s i o n s . See Appendix D f o r o b s e r v a t i o n a l code. s e s s i o n s were very much l i k e the w r i t i n g behaviors e x h i b i t e d by the c o l l e g e l e v e l b a s i c w r i t e r s observed by Pianko (1977) and P e r l (1978). As with other b a s i c w r i t e r s , the w r i t i n g p r ocesses of the Outreach s u b j e c t s were t r u n c a t e d by concern 180 fo r s p e l l i n g s , p unctuation and other s u r f a c e f e a t u r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n s such as handwriting, whether n a r r a t i v e or academic. The s u b j e c t s p a i d l i t t l e a t t e n t i o n to the o v e r a l l p l a n n i n g of t h e i r w r i t i n g . However, more a t t e n t i o n was given to the plann i n g of t h e i r academic w r i t i n g than t h e i r n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g . They e x h i b i t e d twenty-eight independent p l a n n i n g behaviors while w r i t i n g academic d i s c o u r s e ; s i x t e e n independent pla n n i n g behaviors while w r i t i n g n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e . Although s i x of the e i g h t students were able to compose t h e i r p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g independently, none of them thought about the t o t a l composition but r a t h e r l e t the s t o r y t e l l i t s e l f "as i t happened." Only two s u b j e c t s were ab l e to compose academic w r i t i n g independently; one of these s u b j e c t s , Denise, aged 17, a l s o attempted to c o n c e p t u a l i z e her academic w r i t i n g as an i n t e g r a t e d argument throughout the w r i t i n g process. She was the only s u b j e c t who made t h i s attempt — d u r i n g the second academic w r i t i n g task. The s u b j e c t s paused f r e q u e n t l y d u r i n g t h e i r w r i t i n g . As d i s c u s s e d i n Chapter Four, they paused a f t e r fewer words were composed i n the academic genre, and the pauses were of longer d u r a t i o n i n the academic genre (see Tables 4.8 and 4.9). Although the raw number of pauses was g r e a t e r d u r i n g the n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g , t h i s r e f l e c t s the s u b j e c t s ' r e l a t i v e independence with w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e . There was l e s s i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k d u r i n g the n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g and more words 181 were composed (see Table 4.5). These pauses o f t e n o c c u r r e d because t h e i r hands were t i r e d , but more o f t e n the s u b j e c t had "run out of t h i n g s to say." New content was f r e q u e n t l y independently generated d u r i n g these s i l e n t pause times when the s u b j e c t s were composing n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e . When composing academic d i s c o u r s e , i t was more l i k e l y that the s u b j e c t s would i n i t i a t e i n t e r a c t i o n with the r e s e a r c h e r f o r a s s i s t a n c e i n g e n e r a t i n g content. The s u b j e c t s would a l s o read over the phrases or sentences j u s t completed to a i d t h e i r attempts to generate content. O c c a s i o n a l l y these reading spurts were o r a l but most o f t e n they were s i l e n t . S u b j e c t - i n i t i a t e d readings of whole t e x t s were undertaken i n p r e p a r a t i o n f o r t h e i r r e t e l l i n g r a t h e r than f o r purposes of r e t h i n k i n g the o r g a n i z a t i o n or content of t h e i r w r i t i n g . I t i s s i g n i f i c a n t to note that while eighteen (18) s i l e n t readings of whole te x t o c c u r r e d f o r t h i s purpose i n the academic genre, no (0) such readings o c c u r r e d i n the n a r r a t i v e genre. Only one of the s u b j e c t s , Denise, had a concept of r e v i s i n g beyond adding more content, changing or adding i n d i v i d u a l words, phrases or sentences, checking s p e l l i n g and punctuation and r e w r i t i n g to improve t h e i r handwriting for a 'good copy,' whether n a r r a t i v e or academic.. A l l but three of the s u b j e c t s , Ed, 18, C a r o l e , 18, and Nan, 15, were uncl e a r about paragraph o r g a n i z a t i o n . One f a c t o r which i n h i b i t e d the s u b j e c t s ' i n t e r e s t i n making change was that they feared they would have to r e w r i t e "the whole t h i n g " i f they d i d want to make any changes. 182 R e f l e c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Behaviors. While most of the o r a l language evident throughout the taperecorded s e s s i o n s r e s u l t e d from i n t e r a c t i o n s between the su b j e c t and the res e a r c h e r , there were a number of ut t e r a n c e s that were s u b j e c t - i n i t i a t e d f o r r e f l e c t i v e purposes r a t h e r than f o r i n t e r a c t i v e purposes (see Table 5.2). On ra r e o c c a s i o n s s u b j e c t s would t a l k aloud as they wrote but most o f t e n they would pause and make contemplative comments reg a r d i n g the content, form or process of t h e i r w r i t i n g . The s u b j e c t s ' comments o f t e n i n d i c a t e d t h e i r involvement with t h e i r w r i t i n g and were sometimes r e v e a l i n g of t h e i r independent p r o b l e m - s o l v i n g t a c t i c s . That's pretty neat . . . It was real neat when my Dad gave me that gun. Bet you if I put everything in detail, in just a couple nights, i t ' d be just like a whole book . . . Yeah, I'd just have to detail like normal writers do. It was between here an' then right between here . . . about a week I at er. Just gonna write down a few questions f i r s t , of what I'm gonna wr i t e . . . This is my trip t_o_ Edmonton, not my trip at_ Edmont on. There's just two sections . . . he came over to my place . . . The ball could bounce on either side of the fence I'm going to write something else in here . . . like why we broke up. 183 Table 5.2: R e f l e c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Behaviors N a r r a t i v e Academic T o t a l s Composing R e v i s i o n Composing R e v i s i o n Comments SCcontent 5 1 0 1 2 18 SCform 1 1 2 4 8 SCprocess 0 3 5 1 9 T o t a l s 6 14 8 7 (35) E v a l u a t i n g SE+ 4 6 5 4 19 SE- 2 3 3 4 12 T o t a l s 6 9 8 8 (31) Holy. I've got something wrong here . . . How could I do this? I made a bunch of mistakes . . . This last paragraph doesn't make any sense . . . It looks perfect . . . because i t ' s . . . exactly what happened. While some of the s u b j e c t s ' comments were c l e a r l y concerned with e i t h e r content, form, or process, the comments o f t e n r e v e a l e d the i n t e g r a l r e l a t i o n s h i p of these concerns. However, the s u b j e c t s were more l i k e l y to make comments t h a t r e f l e c t e d t h e i r r e a c t i o n s to the remembered experiences that they were r e c o r d i n g i n t h e i r n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g s . Comments about form were more o f t e n made d u r i n g t h e i r academic w r i t i n g as they attempted to invent a form to s u i t t h e i r argument. Comments made about n a r r a t i v e process were ev i d e n t d u r i n g the r e s e a r c h e r - i n i t i a t e d r e v i s i o n s e s s i o n s . Information c o u l d not be simply added on to the end of the n a r r a t i v e but r e q u i r e d a p p r o p r i a t e placement 184 w i t h i n the c h r o n o l o g i c a l sequence of events. Process concerns were more p r e v a l e n t d u r i n g the composing of the academic w r i t i n g s . Because the academic w r i t i n g was c o n s i d e r a b l y more c h a l l e n g i n g f o r these students than the n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g , i t took c o n s i d e r a b l y longer to produce, and there was l e s s time f o r r e v i s i o n i n t h i s genre. I n t e r a c t i v e Talk-Write Learning Most of the t a l k recorded from the case study s e s s i o n s i s i n t e r a c t i v e (see Table 5.3). While the focus of the s e s s i o n s was to i n v e s t i g a t e the s u b j e c t s ' attempts to engage in academic w r i t i n g , i t was evident that i t would be necessary f o r the r e s e a r c h e r to t a l k with the s u b j e c t s about other matters as w e l l , p a r t i c u l a r l y as the researcher was a l s o a teacher and c o u n s e l l o r to these students. Taperecorded data from these s e s s i o n s i n c l u d e s c o n v e r s a t i o n s about experiences and d a i l y concerns as w e l l as c o u n s e l l i n g about s e r i o u s p e r s o n a l matters. In some cases these matters needed to be a i r e d before the s u b j e c t was able to focus h i s or her a t t e n t i o n on the task at hand. T h i s time was a l s o r e q u i r e d i f the s u b j e c t was going to be w i l l i n g to cooperate in the tasks that were being presented. However, most of the t a l k was focused on the w r i t i n g t a s k s . H a l f of the q u e s t i o n s (86/171) posed to the r e s e a r c h e r were e d i t i n g q u e s t i o n s which r e f l e c t e d s u b j e c t s ' concerns f o r s u r f a c e l e v e l w r i t i n g conventions. A l l but four of the e d i t i n g q u e s t i o n s (82/86) were concerned with s p e l l i n g , two 185 Table 5.3: I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Questions N a r r a t i v e Academic T o t a l s Composing R e v i s i o n Composing R e v i s i o n Process Subject 1 8 3 2 1 4 Researcher 1 1 0 0 2 T o t a l s 2 9 3 2 (16) Content Subject 9 4 10 6 29 Researcher 6 6 5 1 18 T o t a l s 15 10 15 7 (47) Form Subject 1 1 12 1 4 5 42 Researcher 2 4 4 3 1 3 T o t a l s 13 16 18 8 (55) E d i t i n g Subject 18 25 17 26 86 Researcher 0 0 0 0 0 T o t a l s 18 25 17 26 (86) T o t a l Subject Questions: 171 T o t a l Researcher Questions: 33 (2/86) were concerned with p u n c t u a t i o n , one (1/86) with grammar and one (1/86) with word c h o i c e . Other q u e s t i o n s posed to the researcher r e v e a l e d much i n f o r m a t i o n about the s k i l l s that are r e q u i r e d to compose n a r r a t i v e and academic d i s c o u r s e . These q u e s t i o n s were q u i t e r e v e a l i n g of the i n t e g r a l r e l a t i o n s h i p between process, content and form concerns, p a r t i c u l a r l y when s u b j e c t s r e q u i r e d h e l p with u n t a n g l i n g t h e i r d i f f i c u l t i e s d u r i n g the academic w r i t i n g t a s k s . The ques t i o n s are a l s o r e v e a l i n g of students' e f f o r t s to w r i t e to s a t i s f y a teacher's requirements. 186 How long does it have to be? One paragraph? One page? How should I start this? How am I gonna do this? I can't think of anything. I don't know how t o do i t . . . Why don't you give me an example? Can I say my opinion in one word? Maybe. My opinion is both ways . . . so what's the argument? It'd be my opinion, right? It wouldn't be if it was ri ght or wrong. Can I start with 'I think' ...? Read t h i s , okay? I don't know if I'm missing anything or not . Can I write it different? I wanted it to make sense down there. I got what I'm gonna put down there . . . Should I just wr i t e it out ? I was right ? I got a 'A' for t hat , eh? Which one sounds better? Questions posed to the s u b j e c t s by the researcher were framed f o r a v a r i e t y of purposes: to he l p the s u b j e c t s i d e n t i f y t h e i r w r i t i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s ; to h e l p the s u b j e c t s extend the content of t h e i r n a r r a t i v e s ( p a r t i c u l a r l y to add d e t a i l s ) ; to h e l p the s u b j e c t s generate knowledge that would h e l p them t o develop t h e i r academic arguments; to h e l p the su b j e c t s c l a r i f y t h e i r t h i n k i n g by c h a l l e n g i n g the l o g i c of t h e i r arguments; to h e l p the s u b j e c t s become more aware of paragraphing s t r u c t u r e s that would h e l p them to be more e f f e c t i v e i n the o r g a n i z a t i o n of t h e i r n a r r a t i v e s and 187 arguments. These q u e s t i o n s were intended to guide the s u b j e c t s ' t h i n k i n g and s t r u c t u r i n g r a t h e r than to assess t h e i r knowledge and s k i l l s . These q u e s t i o n s a l s o p r o v i d e d models to the s u b j e c t s who i n turn posed such q u e s t i o n s to the r e s e a r c h e r . E x p l o r a t o r y T a l k . One of the v a l u a b l e f i n d i n g s of t h i s study was that many of the qu e s t i o n s posed by both the research e r and the s u b j e c t s d u r i n g the academic s e s s i o n s r e s u l t e d i n e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k that helped to generate knowledge, viewpoints and arguments and helped the s u b j e c t s to t h i n k about how they might most e f f e c t i v e l y present t h e i r viewpoints and arguments i n w r i t i n g (see Table 5.4). Table 5.4: E x p l o r a t o r y Talk (during w r i t i n g ) N a r r a t i v e Academic Composing R e v i s i o n Composing R e v i s i o n S u b j e c t -i n i t i a t e d 1 2 15 7 Researcher-i n i t i a t e d 2 1 25 16 T o t a l N a r r a t i v e = 6 T o t a l Academic = 63 While e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k occurred d u r i n g the n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g of two s u b j e c t s who were attempting to "make sense" of t h e i r present l i v e s through an examination of t h e i r p e r s o n a l h i s t o r i e s , a l l of the s u b j e c t s became engaged i n 188 e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k d u r i n g t h e i r academic w r i t i n g i n order to "make sense" i n t h e i r arguments. The same s u b j e c t s who i n d i c a t e d that they never p a r t i c i p a t e d i n classroom d i s c u s s i o n s were i n i t i a t i n g academic d i s c u s s i o n i n t h i s one-on-one con t e x t . A l l of the s u b j e c t s were engaged i n e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k d u r i n g the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s . Each expressed that the o p p o r t u n i t y f o r t h i s kind of one-on-one i n t e r a c t i o n was h e l p f u l f o r many reasons. When the teacher talks to the whole class, you got students goi n' blah, blah . . . (one-on-one) can ask the teacher to explain everything a l i t t l e more clearly . . . can concentrate. (In a secondary school classroom) . . . They give you an assignment an' they s t i c k it in front of ya and say 'Do that' , never said not hi n' . . . they were cruel . . . get information from talking . . . makes you think what you're gonna put down . . . helps you in writing . . . Know what you're writing about because you tell us what to write about . . . wasn't allowed to stay after school (to talk to teachers one-on-one). Learn how to think talking one-to-one . . . if you have a question, a book won't tell you . . . good to talk with someone to get ideas rather than try to come up with them alone . . . Would rather get information from talking than reading . . . mind wanders (when reading) . . . talking, you remember, ask/answer questions . . . you're figuring it out . . . like you know what you wanna know an' you ask what you wanna know an' the person t e l l s you what you wanna know . . . Writing/talking the same . . . Say you say something that I didn't like, I think about what you said and I should argue back with you . . . Things come back real quick to me . . . Sometimes I get caught with words an' I just s i t down an' it takes me a l i t t l e whi I e an' t he n . . . /'// never quit argui ng unt iI I get my point across. 189 Helps to talk before writing 'cause the person explains what you have to write down, explaining everything like detail, what you have to do, how to put it down . . . Get the brain functioning. Just hand him a piece of paper an' tell him t o do i t , he don't know what's on it then he's not gonna do it . . . i t ' s just a matter of figuring out what to write down first for the topic . . . once I do it, the r e s t ' s no pr obi em. The d i a l o g u e that o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s was most r e v e a l i n g of the s u b j e c t s ' sense of what kinds of in f o r m a t i o n c o n s t i t u t e d school knowledge. Although each of the s u b j e c t s was abl e to generate i n f o r m a t i o n that was d e s c r i p t i v e of community experiences when r e c a l l i n g l i f e experiences d u r i n g the w r i t i n g of t h e i r p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e s , only two of the su b j e c t s ( C a r o l e , aged 18, and Denise, aged 17) were c o n f i d e n t that t h e i r p e r s o n a l knowledge of community was v a l i d knowledge f o r essay w r i t i n g . These two g i r l s were the only s u b j e c t s who attempted to w r i t e t h e i r academic arguments without r e l y i n g on the researc h e r to generate i n f o r m a t i o n . As d i s c u s s e d i n Chapter Four, book knowledge was assumed to be the only a c c e p t a b l e form of academic knowledge i n a school environment. I t was through the i n t e r a c t i v e process of ge n e r a t i n g and v a l i d a t i n g s u b j e c t s ' p e r s o n a l knowledge of community that the s u b j e c t s were reassured of the value of t h i s knowledge for the development of t h e i r arguments. / just don't know about the old days . . . They (the elders at potlatches) talk Kwakuitl . . . I don't understand a word of Kwakuitl. You have to understand something to write about it and do good at it. 190 // you know lots . . . then i t ' s easier. I don't know too much about it . . . never lived like that . If i t ' s a topic that I don't understand then I have tr ouble. I don't know too much about the past. I just know how t he y lived in t he village. I don't know not hi n' about it . . . It's easier to write about what I know . . . This is hard . . . I can't think of anything to say How am I gonna do this? I s t i l l don't know . . . I can't think of anything man . . . I'm t hi nki n' . . . Ed, aged 18, had never attempted to w r i t e an academic essay before he p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study. He had been p l e a s e d with h i s progress i n n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g throughout the school year but was s t i l l very anxious about academic w r i t i n g at the time of t h i s second academic tas k . As most of the other s u b j e c t s , he was convinced i n i t i a l l y that he knew nothing about the t o p i c . ******** Session 4 A : Ed: I dunno. I dunno no t h i n ' about lan d c l a i m s . I don't know anything about t h a t . R: W e l l , l e t ' s t a l k about i t a b i t more then, you're gonna be l e a r n i n g about ... Ed: You mean .. you mean uhh .. b u i l d i n g s t u f f on i t or what? R: Okay. F i r s t of a l l ... Ed: G e t t i n g i t back or ... 191 R: G e t t i n g i t back. Why do you f e e l t h a t N a t i v e people have a r i g h t to c e r t a i n lands? Ed: I dunno. R: Come on, sure you do. Ed: I don't know. R: Who were the f i r s t people to l i v e i n t h i s country? Ed: Indians. R: That's r i g h t . Ed: Yeah. R: Have you ever heard of a b o r i g i n a l r i g h t s ? Ed: Oh, t h a t ' s what you're t a l k i n g about. R: What does that mean, a b o r i g i n a l r i g h t s ? Ed: O r i g i n a l r i g h t s . O r i g i n a l . R: Yeah, the r i g h t s of the o r i g i n a l people. Ed: Umm hmm. R: Okay. Umm .. so there were a l o t of Native people who never signed t r e a t i e s , never signed over t h e i r l a n d , but the land was j u s t taken away from them. And now they're s a y i n g ' I t ' s our l a n d . I f you're not gonna give us our land back, we want you to pay us f o r i t ... Ed: I'd r a t h e r have the la n d than the money. R: Why would you r a t h e r have the land? Ed: Got a l o t of f i s h . R: Okay. What .. why do you think i t would be more important to have the f i s h than the money? Ed: 'Cause you .. you can open a cannery or something. R: That's r i g h t . That's r i g h t . So i f you can open a cannery ... Ed: You can make money. R: So what you're saying i s .. you think i t ' s good f o r N a t i v e people to get t h e i r land c l a i m s s e t t l e d . 192 Ed: And t h a t ' s a b o r i g i n a l r i g h t s ? R: That's a b o r i g i n a l r i g h t s ... And what you're saying i s i t ' s good to get that s e t t l e d 'cause then, Native people c o u l d open up .. do th i n g s l i k e open up ca n n e r i e s to make money. Ed: Experience. You g o t t a have umm .. mechanics or .. What's that other one? 'Cause you know, l i k e c a r s go on f o r long t r i p s 'cause that road goes f o r a long way .. you got a welding t h i n g over there, you know .. you go t t a make s t u f f . You know — s t e e l bars to h o l d s t u f f ... R: Oh yeah, t h a t ' s c a l l e d m a c h i nist ... Ed: Welding, machinist .. yeah. R: Yeah, you make machine p a r t s . Ed: An' nets .. you gotta f i x nets. And there's umm r e s t a u r a n t s up there too, .. school h o s p i t a l and umm R: So there's a l o t of d i f f e r e n t jobs ... Ed: They c o u l d b u i l d .. they c o u l d b u i l d a s t o r e there too .. with a l l the Na t i v e people's h e l p .. and the money would go to the Na t i v e s .. Meet a l o t of g i r l s . . . (Laughs) ******** From t h i s i n i t i a l e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k , Ed was able to c l a r i f y meaning of key concepts, formulate a t h e s i s statement and develop a s u p p o r t i v e argument i n h i s w r i t i n g : I t h i n k the A B o r i g i n a l r i g h t are f o r Indian people who's Ancestors had there l a n d taken away from them Ad now are t r y i n g to get i t back, i f the government wasn't going t o give us Na t i v e people our land Back we Expect some Money, i f they give us our land Back we can B u i l d a canary or a r e s o r t etc ... The Indian people c o u l d have a l o t of Job opening, i f they get there land, they c o u l d get A Re c r e a t i o n c e n t r e or i f the government won't give the l a n d back Because t h e r e ' s some kind of i n d u s t r y or a p r o j e c t of some s o r t they'd have t o g i v e the NAtive People Money, i t c o u l d go e i t h e r way, But i t ' s up to the government. 193 When Ed had w r i t t e n a l l that he c o u l d t h i n k of on the t o p i c , the e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k began aga i n . T h i s i l l u s t r a t i o n r e v e a l s that the t o p i c has become meaningful to the s u b j e c t . Ed r e c a l l s i n f o r m a t i o n about a neighbouring community and t h i s helps him to understand that the problem he i s t h i n k i n g about has r e a l i m p l i c a t i o n s . He a l s o demonstrates that he has more knowledge about the t o p i c than he had b e l i e v e d he had. ******** R: What's that gonna g i v e to Native people? Ed: Umm. Courage... (Laughs) R: Yeah, w e l l . P r i d e , courage. That's r i g h t . Ed: And money. R: And jobs .. Ed: Yeah .. and a l o t of money. A l o t of money i s i n v o l v e d . Up i n uhh Port Simpson they got that .. they, they can't get t h e i r land back 'cause they got some i n d u s t r y on i t .. umm .. the government's g i v i n ' them money f o r i t .. ******** S c a f f o l d i n g . Although there was r e s i s t a n c e to the academic assignments, p a r t i c u l a r l y the f i r s t w r i t i n g task, each of the s u b j e c t s became engaged in academic d i s c o u r s e through the i n f o r m a l c o n v e r s a t i o n a l exchanges which occu r r e d while 1 94 the r e s e a r c h e r was h e l p i n g the s u b j e c t s to become c o n f i d e n t of the value of t h e i r knowledge. The i l l u s t r a t i o n t h a t f o l l o w s o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the f o u r t h composing s e s s i o n , the second academic s e s s i o n . T h i s was Shireen's (age 14) f i r s t attempt to compose an academic essay as d u r i n g her f i r s t academic s e s s i o n , the t o p i c had been p e r s o n a l i z e d . ******** R: Okay now .. t h i s i s going to be a l i t t l e b i t tougher today but I ' l l h e l p you with i t .. as much as .. as much he l p as you need .. Okay? Now, i n N a t i v e S t u d i e s , you've been l e a r n i n g about land c l a i m s and Indian Government. Can you remember what the .. the main t h i n g i s about Indian government? Why do N a t i v e l e a d e r s want to have t h e i r own government? Can you remember? Sh: Do you mean 'Why do Native want .. ? Why do N a t i v e l e a d .. uhh .. you mean l i k e , umm .. Native wants t h e i r own Native government? or ... R: That's r i g h t . Sh: I don't know .. R: Why do they want tha t ? Sh: To have what they had before .. t h e i r land and t h e i r food and t h e i r language and t h e i r dances, e v e r y t h i n g R: That's r i g h t , t h e i r c u l t u r e . To be able to develop t h e i r own way of l i f e .. Do you t h i n k t h a t ' s a good th i n g ? Sh: Umm hmm. R: Yeah? Sh: My mom says i t ' s good t a .. to l i v e the o l d way 'cause my, my grandmother, my mom's mom, she used to l i v e l i k e t h a t , she .. umm, she .. I mean, she l i v e d i n the war days and my grandmother she s a i d .. with a pack of c i g a r e t t e s you're only allowed to smoke 195 one a day and you have to take a p u f f and blow i t i n t o the next mouth and then blow i t to the next mouth .. between ten people, one c i g a r e t t e .. They weren' .. they weren't allowed to have any c i g a r e t t e s on account i t was i n the war .. R: Oooh. Sh: But she s a i d when she was younger, she used to l i v e N a t i v e way because .. they used to l i v e i n a small v i l l a g e with umm .. those umm wooden houses, those lo n g , t h i c k l o g houses .. R: Umm hmm. Sh: And they never used to have f u r n i t u r e , my mom used to t a l k l i k e ( i n a u d i b l e ) .. she never had f u r n i t u r e . She used to l i v e up with my .. umm the o l d ways. Her parents caught f i s h , and she smoked them ( i n a u d i b l e ) . She s a i d her mom had r e a l l y l o t s of fun and that she wouldn't .. my mom wouldn't mind l i v i n g i n the o l d ways. R: How do you f e e l about t h a t ? Would you l i k e to do t h a t ? Sh: Umm hmm. With a l l the s t o r i e s my grandmother's t o l d me .. and my mom t o l d me .. I thought maybe i t would be kinda fun R: Okay .. so what you .. you're t e l l i n g me i s that you t h i n k i t ' s good f o r Indian people to have t h e i r own government so that they can have t h e i r own way of l i f e .. and then you can t a l k about that way of l i f e . A l r i g h t , t h a t ' s what I want you to w r i t e about. Sh: Write about what? ... (Laughs) R: Do you want me to w r i t e that down as a question? Sh: Umm hmm. ******** (Researcher w r i t e s the q u e s t i o n at the top of the w r i t i n g page: 'Do you think that Indian Government i s a good idea? Why?) 196 ******** Okay. That's what you're gonna w r i t e about .. S h i r e e n s t a r t s w r i t i n g . Erases word 4 and w r i t e s i t a g a i n . (I think the Native) S t a r l a , 'because' i s s p e l l e d with an 'a' or.an 'o', an 'o', r i g h t ? b-e-c-a-u-s-e Oh. Continues w r i t i n g . S t i l l w r i t i n g . S t a r t i n g l i n e 4. Pause a f t e r 'dances'. Looks around the room. (Government i s a good idea because the Native would have t h e i r N a t i v e c u l t u r e back l i k e t h e i r language dances) S t a r t s w r i t i n g a g a i n . Erases word 4. (land c l a i m s back) ******** I t was evident throughout each of the case study s e s s i o n s t h a t as the s u b j e c t s began to understand the v a l i d i t y of the knowledge that they had gained through p e r s o n a l l i f e experience as w e l l as through the s t o r i e s they had heard from f a m i l y and other community members, they began to generate the i n f o r m a t i o n needed to complete the t a s k . F u r t h e r , s u b j e c t s l i k e Shireen who had d i f f i c u l t y with o r a l d i s c o u r s e became focused on the communication of t h e i r knowledge and communicated lengthy chunks of cohesive d i s c o u r s e that had not been evident d u r i n g t e a c h e r s ' attempts to i n v o l v e the students i n classroom d i s c u s s i o n . The e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k helped to generate the content of the w r i t i n g t a s k . For most of the s u b j e c t s i t was a l s o R: 9:39 9:41.5 Sh: R: Sh: 9:44 9:44.5 1 97 necessary to he l p invent a framework. The qu e s t i o n s w r i t t e n at the top of the w r i t i n g page served t h i s purpose. L e a r n i n g to G e n e r a l i z e . Although p e r s o n a l l i f e experience became the b a s i s f o r gen e r a t i n g knowledge, i t was evident that the s u b j e c t s had d i f f i c u l t y r e f e r r i n g to t h i s knowledge to s p e c u l a t e about broader p o p u l a t i o n s of people who share s i m i l a r l i f e e x periences, or to g e n e r a l i z e i n any way. T h i s d i f f i c u l t y i s w e l l documented as one of the c h a l l e n g e s faced by many remedial c o l l e g e students who are attempting to ac q u i r e academic w r i t i n g s k i l l s which r e q u i r e a detached, d e p e r s o n a l i z e d p e r s p e c t i v e (Lunsford 1980; P e r l 1978; Shaughnessy 1977). / can't imagine what it would be like on a reserve with no government, no white people around . . I've never lived like that . . / don't know much about it. I don't think about them things . . I don't understand why we have to learn it . . I'm not into p o l i t i c s . . I live around it, yeah but I'm not into it . . About my life, I like that 'cause i t ' s about me . . p o l i t i c s ain't my bag. I don't know about them Indians that lived them old days . . I'm not that old . . I could do that easy because I've done it . . this thing that I'm writing, we haven't even started that yet . I don' t know how it would be . . . However, once the s u b j e c t s had come to make the connect i o n s between t h e i r own l i f e s i t u a t i o n s and the sources of i m p o s i t i o n or support f o r t h e i r l i f e s i t u a t i o n s , they d i d begin to make g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s about how t h e i r l i v e s 198 and the l i v e s of others i n t h e i r communities might be e f f e c t e d i f c e r t a i n s t r u c t u r e s or c o n d i t i o n s were a l t e r e d . By c o n n e c t i n g the i n f l u e n c e s of o u t s i d e agencies with t h e i r own l i v e s i n a p e r s o n a l l y meaningful way, each of the s u b j e c t s e v e n t u a l l y experienced the s a t i s f a c t i o n of l e a r n i n g to move between "concrete and a b s t r a c t " statements. The i l l u s t r a t i o n t h a t f o l l o w s begins with the r e s e a r c h e r ' s e f f o r t s to h e l p the s u b j e c t (Carole) t h i n k i n a general way about 'her people'. ******** R: Now, why would land be so important? ... Okay. What about to the Haida people up i n the Queen C h a r l o t t e s ? Why would i t be so important to them? C: 'Cause they love t h e i r l a n d . R: Okay .. they love t h e i r l a n d . What does t h e i r l a n d do f o r them? C: I t ' s q u i e t . R: Yes .. i t ' s q u i e t .. i t ' s t h e i r home. Does t h e i r l a n d provide anything f o r them? C: Food .. R: Umm hmm .. what kind of food? C: Sea food. R: What about the f o r e s t .. Does the f o r e s t p rovide anything f o r them? C: The bears. R: Umm hmm .. C: Deer .. deer meat .. R: Umm hmm. 199 C: Umm .. R: W e l l , the wood would a l s o provide money f o r t h e i r homes, for canoes or to s e l l to get money .. so the la n d i s very important. Okay. Now, how are these two t h i n g s connected .. the D.I.A. and the land c l a i m s ? C: I'm not gonna be w r i t i n g about t h i s , am I? R: W e i l , a f t e r we get i t s o r t e d out, yeah. F i r s t of a l l , I'm gonna help you .. s o r t i t out. Okay, how about w r i t i n g a few q u e s t i o n s down .. I'm gonna give you a few q u e s t i o n s that w i l l h e lp you, okay? R: Does the D.I.A. j u s t g i v e out money and say 'Do what you want with i t ' ? No, i t doesn't. I f they give out the money, th e r e ' s some s t r i n g s a t t a c h e d , r i g h t ? C: Umm hmm. R: What does that mean, ' s t r i n g s attached'? C: Umm .. one t h i n g I heard i s that you can't get a house on a reserve unless you're married with a f a m i l y .. R: Okay. So that would be a ' s t r i n g a t t a c h e d . ' C: W e l l , i t ' s been going on f o r years that .. our e l d e r s of the Native people are t r y i n ' t a f i g h t back f o r t h e i r land but they c o u l d never get i t back .. R: What are t h ' .. some of the problems? C: They'd go see the .. the f e d e r a l or the p r o v i n c i a l and they'd go f i g h t i n court about t h e i r lands .. t h e i r land c l a i m s ... R: Do you think i t would be worth i t f o r Native people not to have the D.I.A. around? To have t h e i r own resources to make t h e i r own money? C: Uh mm .. R: How i s that d i f f e r e n t , do you think? C: I t h i n k the Native people should look f o r jobs more o f t e n . They j u s t s i t around at home .. and .. they don't think of nothing of t h e i r k i d s ' f u t u r e .. an' most f a m i l i e s d r i n k .. and most f a m i l i e s l i v e on w e l f a r e .. and .. and they'd be b e t t e r o f f to have a job .. 200 R: So you think i t ' d be b e t t e r not to have the D.I.A. any more? C: Umm hmm .. R: Get r i d of i t ? C: Once you have your own .. once you have a good job. ******** Again, the researcher helped the s u b j e c t to c r e a t e a s t r u c t u r e f o r her argument by having her w r i t e q u e s t i o n s and e x p l a i n i n g that her p o i n t of view must be supported by reasons. C a r o l e ' s ' s t a r t i n g p l a c e ' then was: 'Is i t a good idea to c l o s e down the D.I.A.?' I think i t ' s important to s e t t l e l a n d c l a i m s because most people that want to l i v e on the r e s e r v e , has to be married with a f a m i l y . When C a r o l e begins to w r i t e , she i s focused on the D.I.A. r u l e that i s having the most e f f e c t on her own p e r s o n a l l i f e . She wants to have her own home and r a i s e her daughter o u t s i d e of her parents' home but she b e l i e v e s that she has to be married to q u a l i f y . Her disagreement with t h i s r u l e begins her c r i t i q u e of the a u t h o r i t y of the D.I.A. and her support f o r Land Claims. At the same time, she i s c a u t i o u s as she understands that there c o u l d be a worse s i t u a t i o n i f the D.I.A. simply disbanded without Native people f i r s t having t h e i r own income sources secured. T h i s opening argument was extended to focus on the problem of jobs and t h a t the white people have a l l the jobs — t a k i n g wood from t h e i r f o r e s t s and f i s h from t h e i r waters. These p o i n t s had been t a l k e d about e a r l i e r i n the d i s c u s s i o n . 201 Throughout the remainder of the essay, C a r o l t h i n k s about the land c l a i m s i s s u e as i t a f f e c t s group l i f e , not j u s t her own. Assuming a Voi c e of A u t h o r i t y . I t was not only d i f f i c u l t f o r these s u b j e c t s to l e a r n to g e n e r a l i z e from t h e i r p e r s o n a l knowledge to gai n understanding of the ways i n which ot h e r s ' l i v e s are s i m i l a r l y a f f e c t e d . They a l s o had d i f f i c u l t y assuming a g e n e r a l i z e d v o i c e of a u t h o r i t y . I t was important to them to be assured that others would not n e c e s s a r i l y t h i n k that they were t r y i n g speak f o r others because they had assumed a g e n e r a l i z e d frame of r e f e r e n c e . Conversations with a number of Native a d u l t s , i n c l u d i n g those who worked i n the r e s e a r c h s e t t i n g , i n d i c a t e d that many Native c u l t u r e s look down on those who assume a u t h o r i t y without the s a n c t i o n of the community. You gotta ask them . . I dunno . . I won't write about Native people . . I might accidentally say something wrong. Well, that explains everything I guess. This is just what I_ think about everything. The s c a f f o l d i n g f u n c t i o n s performed by the researcher were aimed at h e l p i n g the s u b j e c t s to become more aware of the value of t h e i r p e r s o n a l knowledge i n more general frameworks that i n c l u d e d i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r themselves and others i n t h e i r s i t u a t i o n s . At the same time, i t was necessary to he l p students understand that they were not n e c e s s a r i l y speaking f o r others when they wrote i n general 202 terms. They were t o l d t h a t the arguments they were p r e s e n t i n g were t h e i r own o p i n i o n s and they were e n t i t l e d to t h e i r own o p i n i o n , p a r t i c u l a r l y i f they had good s u p p o r t i n g evidence f o r t h e i r o p i n i o n s . Generating Conceptual Frameworks as H e u r i s t i c s . While the academic w r i t i n g tasks f i r s t r e q u i r e d that the s u b j e c t s be aware of a body of knowledge from which they would develop t h e i r arguments, the shaping of that knowledge was o f t e n i n t e g r a l to the s u b j e c t s ' p e r s p e c t i v e s on the i s s u e . These frameworks a l s o helped the s u b j e c t s d i s t a n c e themselves i n a r r i v i n g at t h e i r p o s i t i o n s . For example, Rob, aged 14, always i n s i s t e d on viewing the task from two p e r s p e c t i v e s : pros and cons, advantages and disadvantages. T h i s method of framing helped him to generate what he knew and thought about the i s s u e presented to him and the argument would then be developed w i t h i n t h i s framework. * * * * * * * * * Rob/ Session 4A: Is i t a good idea f o r n a t i v e people to s e t t l e there own land c l a i m s and manage t h i e r own a f f a i r s without the D.I.A. i n t e r f e r r i n g 203 AdvANtAgE Di s They would have own money to do what they want when they want They would have money f o r c u l t u r a l events. B u i l d h a l l s . They would have money to make money But the MONEy c o u l d BE USED E i t h E r Way F o o l i s h l y or SMArtly. Now i f thEy gave the MoNEy to to soME goNADE who would driNK or soMEtHiNg F o o l i s h ByE ByE MONEY AND lANd. Or thERE BusiNESS Might Not work out. ******** Ed, age 18, and Greg, age 16, developed t h e i r academic arguments w i t h i n f a m i l i a r n a r r a t i v e frameworks such as 'Long time ago' and 'Back i n the o l d days'. The t o p i c s l e n t themselves to h i s t o r i c a l (Then/Now) d i s c u s s i o n and t h i s allowed these boys to think about the i s s u e s w i t h i n n a r r a t i v e terms. Others began t h e i r academic w r i t i n g with .'I think' as they p e r c e i v e d that t h i s was the purpose of the task. Nan, aged 15, used the t r a d i t i o n a l essay w r i t i n g framework that she had learn e d to wr i t e r e p o r t s f o r her S o c i a l S t u d i e s c l a s s e s at Outreach (Introduction/Body/ Summary and C o n c l u s i o n ) . The s u b j e c t s a l s o began to w r i t e t h e i r own qu e s t i o n s to guide t h e i r t h i n k i n g and composing. Just gonna write down a few questions f i r s t , of what I'm gonna write so I know . . I ' l l make an i nt r oduct i on . . you gotta talk about what you're writing about . . My topic is so and so I had ideas, right? Then I just putted them . . I dunno . . / wrote it . . the disadvantages, advantage . . I i ke t hat . . My opinion is both ways . . so what's the argument? I could put down the advantages and disadvantages . . I l hi nk . . 204 Back in the old days, I guess before the white people came to our land I think the i ndi ans had a pretty good life . . . Long time ago before whi t eman came evert hing was okay, unt i I . . . While each s u b j e c t was i n d i v i d u a l l y c r e a t i v e i n the in v e n t i o n s of t h e i r academic frameworks, only Denise, aged 18, was c o n f i d e n t enough about her way of shaping her d i s c o u r s e that she developed her framework without the feedback and encouragement of the r e s e a r c h e r . She not only generated her own content but was determined to shape i t i n her own way. (Thi s may have been an age f a c t o r as Denise was s t r u g g l i n g to complete grade 9 requirements d u r i n g the time of t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n . Denise had never a d j u s t e d to secondary school e x p e c t a t i o n s , even at Outreach and had l e f t s c h o o l mid-year f o r three years running.) Okay. I'm put t i n' up an argument to say we want that land back . . I have it all in my mind f i r s t , what I'm gonna say . . . Throughout the w r i t i n g process, each of the su b j e c t s became engaged i n t h e i r own t h i n k i n g about t h e i r p e r s p e c t i v e s on the i s s u e s and o c c a s i o n a l l y they would stop w r i t i n g to ask f o r r e a c t i o n s from the r e s e a r c h e r . The su b j e c t s were not so much asking f o r responses as wanting an audience while t e s t i n g t h e i r t h i n k i n g aloud to a r r i v e at t h e i r own c o n c l u s i o n s . 205 ******** Rob/ Session 4B: Rb: .Okay. Okay. I ' l l put .. I think .. i t ' s a good i d e a . Yeah. A l r i g h t .. 9:44.5 S t a r t s w r i t i n g the f i r s t sentence. 9:47 Stops w r i t i n g . (FEB 15, 1984 I t h i n k i t i s a good idea f o r n a t i v e people to s e t t l e t h i e r own land c l a i m s and manage t h i e r own money) Rb: You know, with the money they get from the D.I.A., r i g h t ? I t c o u l d s t i l l do the same t h i n g and s t i l l be having more money. R: What's the d i f f e r e n c e ? Rb: W e l l , l i k e they c o u l d , once they get the money f o r something to b u i l d .. R: Umm hmm .. Rb: .. They b u i l d i t , they make money out of i t , they get money back p l u s they're s t i l l g e t t i n g money from the D.I.A. * * * * * * * * Nan/ Session 4A: 11:08 Pauses, beginning of l i n e 17, goes back and w r i t e s (,) a f t e r 'and N a t i v e s ' . (Now that t h i n g s are s e t t l i n g down between Whites and Nat i v e s , ) Continues w r i t i n g . 11:09 B r i e f pause a f t e r 1 1/2 l i n e s , w r i t e s (.). (they j u s t might s t a r t up again when we get our clai m s . ) N: Do you thin k that when we do, l i k e , umm .. when we get our land c l a i m s that .. l i k e t h i n g s might s t a r t up, you know, and .. you thin k there'd be be more umm .. p r e j u d i c e people? R: What's making you ask that question? N: We l l , l i k e , l i k e j e a l o u s , the whites might get j e a l o u s l i k e some of them .. that we get our land c l a i m s back .. R: Could be a problem .. What do you t h i n k ? 206 N: I th i n k so .. when we do .. does umm .. l i k e we can .. oh, f o r g e t i t .. I can't e x p l a i n i t .. R: Well, j u s t t r y .. N: No, i t ' s not p o s s i b l e , because I j u s t know i t now .. never mind. R: Now you've got me c u r i o u s . N: (Laughs) ... I was gonna say l i k e , we can, can, l i k e we're allowed anywhere, r i g h t ? But then again, I j u s t remembered Canada, a f r e e country and we're allowed anywhere, r i g h t ? Okay. That's a l l . R: You a l r e a d y are, you mean? N: Yeah. R: Right . . 11:11.5 Begins w r i t i n g a g a i n . 11:13 Stops w r i t i n g . Reads over what she's w r i t t e n , c r o s s e s out a word. (I don't mean between the government I mean people of the white s o c i e t y . ) ******** Denise/ Session 2A: De: We would have d i s c o v e r e d t h i n g s .. you know, i n s t e a d of .. R: Okay .. De: .. l i k e , whoever i t was that w-went to the r e s - r e s e r v e or whatever. Somebody would have found l a t e r on, would have found, found white people or .. somebody e l s e would have found the Indians .. R: So the Indians might have been the ones to d i s c o v e r the white people? De: Could have been who-whoever .. I don't thi n k w e l l , somebody was at .. had to f i n d out what's, what's going on R: Okay. 207 De: I mean, th e r e ' s not o n l y one c u r i o u s person i n t h i s world, you know. ******** R e v i s i o n as Part of a C o n c e p t u a l i z i n g P r o c e s s . Although only one su b j e c t , Denise, attempted to independently c o n c e p t u a l i z e and r e v i s e a whole d i s c o u r s e t e x t , a l l of the other s u b j e c t s were concerned that t h e i r w r i t i n g , p a r t i c u l a r l y t h e i r academic w r i t i n g , should "make sense." Much of the e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k that o c c u r r e d during the academic w r i t i n g tasks was concerned with r e v i s i o n as a means of c l a r i f y i n g meaning. Subjects wanted h e l p both with g e n e r a t i n g more i n f o r m a t i o n that would enhance meaning and r e s t a t i n g t h e i r i n f o r m a t i o n so that i t s s t r u c t u r a l components would enhance meaning. Well, I ' l l just put 'em, put all my ideas in here ~~ first . . . then I ' l l rewrite it . . . Can I write it different? Nothing makes sense to me. I read it over, both of the first two I wrote out an' then . . I put it all together and put it in different places . . . The last paragraph doesn't make any sense . . I don't know. It just seems so, it justs seems like I just threw it together and wrote s ome t hi ng . . . Okay. I put this in better words and . . I took some of this information . . / got here and I used it in a better way. I'm gonna have to start this all over again Starla . . because it doesn't make any sense. 208 I t was evident throughout the t r a n s c r i p t s t h at while on l y two of the s u b j e c t s ( C a r o l e and Denise) were able to attempt independent c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n of the content and form of t h e i r academic w r i t i n g s , the other s u b j e c t s a c q u i r e d an understanding of c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n through the process of e v a l u a t i n g the knowledge and s t r u c t u r e s they had used a f t e r i t was i n w r i t i n g . C l e a r l y , i t was important to each of the su b j e c t s that t h e i r thoughts be shaped i n such a way that they were meaningful to others as w e l l as themselves. However, without the s u p p o r t i v e guidance and feedback of a teacher, the e x e r c i s e would have ended i n f r u s t r a t i o n and as f r e q u e n t l y o c c u r r e d before Outreach students l e a r n e d the value of ' r e v i s i o n ' , most d i s a p p o i n t i n g w r i t i n g experiences ended as crumpled paper i n the wastebasket. I t was evident that the e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k was r i c h with e x p r e s s i o n of the s u b j e c t s ' own deeply f e l t need to share t h e i r knowledge and c l a r i f y t h e i r own t h i n k i n g . * * * * * * * * Ed, Session 2B: Ed: You know what I d i d n ' t mention here? Land. You d i d n ' t need to buy i t . How you buy i t now .. Long time ago you d i d n ' t have to buy land, j u s t t r a v e l wherever you wanted t o . One t r i b e l i v e s here, and another t r i b e s l i v e s t h e r e . Nobody's t e l l i n ' you who l i v e d where .. an' you c l a i m t e r r i t o r i e s on l a n d . Then white man came. R: So i s . t h e r e some p l a c e you c o u l d put something i n there about that? Ed: Umm .. r i g h t here? .. r i g h t there? R: Umm. Yeah, put a l i t t l e 'one' there l i k e t h a t , then down here make a 'one' and wr i t e i t out and then when you get to t h i s p a r t you can j u s t add i t i n . See what I mean? 209 Ed: Umm hmm. (Continues w r i t i n g . ) ******** , Session 2 B : Gr: I t ' s only because of the white people, t h a t ' s why, t h a t ' s why we're, I mean, a l l of us Indians uhh some of .. W e l l , not a l l but some, turn i n t o l a z y people because a l l the white peoples get a l l the j o b s . Every time .. they get .. every time .. every time .. e v e r y t h i n g .. See .. and, uhh, they j u s t don't know what i t ' s l i k e to be a Native Indian .. and they don't know what .. a l o t of people j u s t don't know what we've going through .. Ju s t don't know .. R: What you're saying so f a r i s that .. you f e e l that white people keep g e t t i n ' i n your way .. Gr: An' they shouldn't .. R: An' makin' i t hard f o r ya. And yet there's guys l i k e Joan an' A r n i e .. Gr: mumbles R: Yeah, but what about people l i k e Joan and A r n i e ? I mean, they're r e a l good to ya .. Gr: Oh, w e l l , t h a t ' s d i f f e r e n t .. See .. umm .. uhh umm .. I th .. umm .. I think they're i n the same p o s i t i o n t h at i s me .. Right? I, uhh .. as what we're i n , r i g h t ? Because ... they're j u s t the same. See, they don't .. uhh .. w e l l , Joan's got a job and s t u f f l i k e t h a t but you see .. uhh .. w e l l .. R: They're not r i c h ? Gr: R i g h t . They're not .. they're not l i k e umm .. you go over to somebody's p l a c e and see t h i s great n i c e b i g s t e r e o set and s t u f f l i k e t h i s . Nice .. uhh .. anything n i c e .. uhh .. we're not l i k e t h a t . R: Okay. W e l l , now you're s a y i n ' something d i f f e r e n t 'cause now what you're saying i s .. Gr: Oh no, I know what you're, what you're g e t t i n g at now, no but the t h i n g i s .. uhh .. uhh .. w e l l , I got l o s t . . . (Laughs) 210 R: Okay. What am I t r y i n g to say? Gr: I f o r g o t .. I j u s t .. R: I t ' s not a l l white people .. There's poor .. Gr: Yeah. R: There's poor white people too ... Gr: Yeah .. but s t i l l , a l o t of .. yeah but you see more, there's more uhh .. poor Indians than there are poor white people, r i g h t ? And you see so many, so many .. uhh Indians walkin' these s t r e e t s and uhh .. you see a few, w e l l , q u i t e a few white people but you always see .. uhh .. a g r e a t e r amount of Indians than you do white people .. over there .. R: I don't know i f t h a t ' s t r u e , Greg. Gr: I t i s . I know i t ' s t r u e because I've been t h e r e . R: When you go down over to ..[a nearby r e s t a u r a n t ] I t ' s mostly white people i n th e r e . Gr: W e l l , yeah. Yeah, but s t i l l they got money to, to buy t h e i r food. The Indians, they have to e i t h e r t r y an' uhh scrape up t h e i r food, l i k e out of garbage cans .. uhh .. s t u f f l i k e t h a t .. I've seen i t . I've seen i t and done i t before .. when I was younger. I've been through a l l them stages, uhh w e l l , you know. ******** W r i t i n g : (The reason why I thin k the white peoples ways of l i f e s t i n k s i s because the Indians don't have much going f o r them white people have money and show i t o f f and most of the in d i a n people are poor with no money or p l a c e s to l i v e . The i n d i a n and some white people have to eat garbage and .. l i k e t h a t . ) * * * * * * * * At the end of t h i s lengthy academic d i s c o u r s e , Greg had maintained h i s p e r s p e c t i v e from h i s own p e r s o n a l experience but he had decided to make q u a l i f i c a t i o n . Thus, as with the other Outreach students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study, Greg 21 1 had ventured i n t o the "uncharted" t e r r i t o r i e s of formal academic d i s c o u r s e , as he s t r e t c h e d h i s a b i l i t i e s to think about p e r s o n a l matters i n more detached, a b s t r a c t , and a n a l y t i c a l ways. Sub j e c t s ' Views of the I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Process While a l l of the s u b j e c t s were i n i t i a l l y u n f a m i l i a r with e i t h e r the r h e t o r i c a l concerns or f u n c t i o n a l purposes of academic d i s c o u r s e , a l l of the s u b j e c t s became engaged i n t h i s w r i t i n g f o r t h e i r own purposes — to r e f l e c t upon matters that had p r e v i o u s l y seemed to have l i t t l e to do with them. And although none of t h e i r w r i t t e n products would have been w e l l r e c e i v e d by a S o c i a l S t u d i e s teacher i n a mainstream secondary s c h o o l , the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e experience was very s a t i s f y i n g to these students. I want to know about my land an' what's goi n' on with our land . . to find out what's goi n' on in the world . . If I start gettin' i nt o t hat ri ght now, I'm gonna get pretty upset. I thought about it a bit last night . . trying to figure out to myself. Gettin' more brains . . I'm surprised at what I did. I got a 'A' for that, eh? I got good opinions opinions, you know . . I use every l i t t l e detail in It's not good, its excel Ient cent on t hat . 1 got a hundred per 212 D e s p i t e the many c h a l l e n g e s which these student s u b j e c t s were given i n the p r e s e n t a t i o n of the academic w r i t i n g t a s k s , each of them expressed that i f they c o u l d f e e l f r e e to c a l l upon a te a c h e r ' s help i n the w r i t i n g of academic essays, they valued t h i s method of l e a r n i n g . I t was p a r t i c u l a r l y meaningful to them to be abl e t o draw from t h e i r own knowledge sources and l e a r n to t h i n k about t h i s knowledge w i t h i n broadened frameworks. Shireen: You think when you write an essay . . can think without talking. Essay (wri t i ng) . . gi vi ng my opi ni on makes your brain work . . I just don't know how to put the paragraphs . . where to stop . . You have to think of your own ideas . . Once I wrote it down, then I started t hi nki n' more and more about it . . . (Learn best) . . writing a research essay. I hate it but it would probably be the best way to sink something into my head. (Essay) writing is good . . getting all the information together and how I should put it down . . learn because I have to think about it for a long time an' how I should say it an' write it down . . Once I find the answer then i t ' s no probi em. It makes you think hard . . Some parts were pretty hard but i t ' s more interesting (than writing stories) . . you have to think about it and then write it down . . Ed: Nan: Rob: De ni s e. Greg: Fr ed: Carole: I don't think I'd be able to talk about it first . . would have to think about it first . . read about it or write about it. 213 These students were proud of t h e i r w r i t t e n products as these academic essays were the f i r s t that they had w r i t t e n . I t was rewarding to them to d i s c o v e r that they knew much more than they had p r e v i o u s l y b e l i e v e d that they knew. And i t was a s a t i s f y i n g l e a r n i n g experience to have been able to ask f o r and r e c e i v e h e l p f o r whatever pur-pose i t was needed but at the end of the task know that the t h i n k i n g that was evident i n t h e i r w r i t i n g was t h e i r own. Each of the s u b j e c t s expressed that the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e process helped them to " t h i n k . " They a l s o expressed that they would f e e l more comfortable s h a r i n g t h e i r knowledge and ideas d u r i n g classroom d i s c u s s i o n s i f they c o u l d f i r s t go through such a process as a means of p r e p a r a t i o n f o r the d i s c u s s i o n . It was e v i d e n t that the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s had a p o s i t i v e e f f e c t on these students' w r i t i n g e f f o r t s and t h e i r o r a l performance, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the academic genre. Through an e x p l o r a t o r y process, the s u b j e c t s were able to r e c e i v e h e l p with t h e i r d i f f i c u l t i e s and they both generated knowledge and invented frameworks that helped them to c o n c e p t u a l i z e w i t h i n broader d i s c o u r s e u n i t s . These frameworks then helped them to s u s t a i n t h e i r o r a l d i s c o u r s e performance. While few of the s u b j e c t s were ab l e to generate more o r a l d i s c o u r s e than w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e , even a f t e r the t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s , there i s evidence that the s u b j e c t s were b e t t e r able to express themselves o r a l l y a f t e r having 214 had time to generate t h e i r memories and views through independent w r i t i n g as w e l l as the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e p r o c e s s . For each of the s u b j e c t s except two, Shireen and Ed, the longest s u s t a i n e d d i s c o u r s e that o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the spontaneous d i a l o g u e was l e s s than the longest s u s t a i n e d d i s c o u r s e that o c c u r r e d d u r i n g each of t h e i r r e t e l l i n g performances. Table 5.5: Comparisons of Longest Sustained Chunks of O r a l D i s c o u r s e : Dialogue vs. Performance N a r r a t i v e Academic Dialogue Performance Dialogue Performance Ed 64 147 178 1 52 Rob 1 15 1522 68 1 1 3 Fred 1 7 96 72 79 Greg 1 18 859 75 224 C a r o l e 20 545 62 209 Shi reen 48 40 104 57 Nan 28 464 27 1 58 Denise 85 598 134 302 D < P W+ = 10 p = .0029 Summary of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s The key f i n d i n g s of t h i s chapter a r e : 1. The independent composing processes of these students are much l i k e the composing processes of remedial c o l l e g e students i d e n t i f i e d i n the l i t e r a t u r e as Basic W r i t e r s . Most of the s u b j e c t s had d i f f i c u l t y 215 c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g beyond the sentence or paragraph u n i t and t h e i r c o n c e n t r a t i o n was o f t e n d i s t r a c t e d by s u r f a c e l e v e l concerns, p a r t i c u l a r l y s p e l l i n g , whether w r i t i n g i n the n a r r a t i v e or academic genre. These " t r u n c a t e d " w r i t i n g processes were r e f l e c t e d i n the l a c k of cohesion that i s evident i n the w r i t t e n products of these students, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the academic genre. 2. I t was evident throughout the i n t e r a c t i v e case study s e s s i o n s that the s u b j e c t s r e q u i r e d c o n s i d e r a b l y more a s s i s t a n c e i n the p r o d u c t i o n of academic d i s c o u r s e than n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . However, the nature of t h e i r f i r s t academic task, an h i s t o r i c a l argument, allowed them to draw on t h e i r f a m i l i a r i t y with n a r r a t i v e as a s t r u c t u r a l a i d f o r g e n e r a l i z i n g the content to support t h e i r argument. The s u b j e c t s l a c k e d c o n f i d e n c e i n the academic value of t h e i r p e r s o n a l knowledge and had l i t t l e or no idea of how to go about c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g an academic argument. Through s u b j e c t and r e s e a r c h e r - i n i t i a t e d e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k , the s u b j e c t s gained an understanding of the purpose of academic d i s c o u r s e as w e l l as l e a r n i n g to invent o p t i o n a l frameworks f o r developing g e n e r a l i z e d t h e o r e t i c a l arguments. While there was evidence of n a r r a t i v e frameworks in the s u b j e c t s ' f i r s t academic w r i t i n g , these frameworks were not i n evidence d u r i n g the second academic w r i t i n g task. The s u b j e c t s a l s o l e a r n e d the value of i n v e n t i n g t h e i r own s t r u c t u r a l a i d s as means fo r g e n e r a t i n g and shaping t h e i r knowledge and thoughts. 216 3. The s u b j e c t s ' p a t t e r n s of d i f f i c u l t y with academic d i s c o u r s e were c l e a r l y r e v e a l e d d u r i n g the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s . Each of the s u b j e c t s had d i f f i c u l t y g e n e r a t i n g g e n e r a l i z e d i n f o r m a t i o n and s p e c u l a t i v e i d e a s , d e p e r s o n a l i z i n g and c l a r i f y i n g t h e i r v i e w p o i n t s , and o r g a n i z i n g t h e i r arguments f o r the purposes of c l e a r communication to an audience. They a l s o had d i f f i c u l t y assuming a v o i c e of a u t h o r i t y . I m p l i c a t i o n s of Key Chapter F i n d i n g s The f i n d i n g s d i s c u s s e d i n t h i s chapter suggest that w r i t i n g students who are taught to focus on s u r f a c e l e v e l c o r r e c t i o n s may be thwarted i n t h e i r attempts to develop con c e p t u a l frameworks. W r i t i n g then becomes an e x e r c i s e i n a c q u i r i n g encoding s t r a t e g i e s and l o s e s i t s p o t e n t i a l as a powerful instrument f o r r e f l e c t i v e thought for p e r s o n a l problem s o l v i n g as w e l l as p u b l i c debate. At the same time, whatever o r a l language b e n e f i t s might p o t e n t i a l l y be d e r i v e d from the process of w r i t i n g may a l s o be l o s t . I t appears that the i n t e r a c t i v e talk-write'' s e s s i o n s helped the s u b j e c t s to extend t h e i r ideas and i n t e g r a t e t h e i r knowledge and thoughts to be a b l e to express themselves in more extended statements. T h i s l e a r n i n g i s r e f l e c t e d i n t h e i r remarks that they would f e e l b e t t e r about p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n classroom d i s c u s s i o n s i f they c o u l d f i r s t have the o p p o r t u n i t y to work through t h e i r t h i n k i n g i n 217 w r i t i n g with the support of the teacher. I t i s expected that many students would b e n e f i t from t h i s i n s t r u c t i o n a l model. However, t h i s s p e c u l a t i o n i s i n need of i n v e s t i g a t i o n . 218 CHAPTER SIX CONCLUDING DISCUSSION The Purpose and Nature of the Study The purpose of t h i s study was to i n v e s t i g a t e the o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e performance of a small sample of underachieving urban Native Indian secondary students. The study was concerned with i n v e s t i g a t i n g w r i t i n g performance i n r e l a t i o n to o r a l d i s c o u r s e performance and the ways i n which (student/teacher) i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k s t r a t e g i e s i n f l u e n c e d students' w r i t i n g processes and w r i t t e n products, when comparing f o r n a r r a t i v e and academic genres. I t was intended that these i n v e s t i g a t i o n s would pr o v i d e i n s i g h t r e g a r d i n g the nature of w r i t i n g f o r s c h o o l i n g purposes and the demands of academic d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n . Performance Assessments and Home-School Background Language and l i t e r a c y assessments i n d i c a t e d that the s u b j e c t s who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study had not a c q u i r e d the language and l i t e r a c y s k i l l s necessary f o r s u c c e s s f u l secondary school l e a r n i n g . Although the average age/grade l e v e l assignment f o r these s u b j e c t s was i n the mid-secondary 219 school range (9 - 11), only one student was ab l e to read and w r i t e at grade l e v e l . A l l others wrote at l e v e l s 'unacceptable' f o r grade e i g h t and t h e i r average reading l e v e l was grade 6.4. Desp i t e low reading and w r i t i n g assessments, these students i n d i c a t e d t h at they enjoyed reading and w r i t i n g p e r s o n a l and imaginary n a r r a t i v e s . They a l s o i n d i c a t e d that t h i s genre was f a m i l i a r to them from t h e i r p r e v i o u s s c h o o l i n g experiences as w e l l as i n t h e i r home c o n v e r s a t i o n s , l e t t e r w r i t i n g , and reading (novels, magazines, newspapers). However, although these students had b a s i c l i t e r a c y s k i l l s i n the readi n g and w r i t i n g of n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e , they had l i t t l e f a m i l i a r i t y with academic d i s c o u r s e and were unable to read, w r i t e or p a r t i c i p a t e i n academic d i s c u s s i o n s without t e a c h e r / r e s e a r c h e r i n t e r v e n t i o n and support. S p e c i f i c d i f f i c u l t i e s appeared to be r e l a t e d to the g e n e r a l i z e d nature of academic d i s c o u r s e and i t s a u t h o r i a t i v e v o i c e . They a l s o had d i f f i c u l t y d e v eloping c a t e g o r i e s of knowledge and o v e r a l l c onceptual frameworks f o r p r e s e n t i n g t h i s knowledge. The s u b j e c t s who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study p r e f e r r e d w r i t i n g assignments r a t h e r than t a l k a c t i v i t i e s , even when asked to share p e r s o n a l knowledge shaped w i t h i n a n a r r a t i v e framework, and d e s p i t e t h e i r d i f f i c u l t i e s with w r i t i n g . They expressed that they had experienced much an x i e t y i n school because of t e a c h e r s ' i n s i s t e n c e that they speak out i n f r o n t of t h e i r c l a s s m a t e s . 220 The i n t e r a c t i o n a l p a t t e r n s of t e a c h e r - c e n t e r e d classrooms appeared to have had adverse a f f e c t s on the l e a r n i n g of these students as with other p o p u l a t i o n s of Native Indian students (DuMont 1972; Nakonechny 1986; P h i l l i p s 1972; T o o t o o s i s 1983). They r e v e a l e d that much of t h e i r a t t e n t i o n i n elementary school was given to developing s t r a t e g i e s to a v o i d having t h e i r teachers c a l l upon them f o r answers to t e s t i n g - t y p e q u e s t i o n s , or f o r p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n c l a s s d i s c u s s i o n s without f i r s t having the o p p o r t u n i t y to th i n k about t h e i r v i e w p o i n t s . T h i s a t t i t u d e may r e f l e c t a c u l t u r a l value that i s h e l d by many Na t i v e Indian peoples — a p r i d e of performance where the performer determines h i s or her own r e a d i n e s s (Murdoch 1981; P h i l l i p s 1972). T r a d i t i o n a l l y , Native c h i l d r e n l e a r n e d through o b s e r v a t i o n , p r a c t i c e of segmented t a s k s , p r a c t i c e of whole t a s k s , and f i n a l l y performance. T h i s value i s apparent i n the s u b j e c t s ' remarks that i f they c o u l d t h i n k through t h e i r ideas and organize them i n w r i t i n g before they were asked to present them to o t h e r s , they would f e e l more comfortable making a c o n t r i b u t i o n to classroom d i s c u s s i o n s . These students d i d not want to d i s p l a y t h e i r knowledge before they f e l t ready. While other p o p u l a t i o n s of students might c o n s i d e r a classroom d i s c u s s i o n to be a source of ideas to provoke t h e i r thoughts ( B r i t t o n et al. 1975), these students f e l t t hat they wanted to have t h e i r thoughts worked out before they were shared. They d i d not want t h e i r thoughts to be 221 i n t e r r u p t e d by others - something that i s l i k e l y to happen in a l i v e l y classroom d i s c u s s i o n — and they d i d not want t h e i r thoughts to be c o r r e c t e d . They a l s o f e l t that they would have more confidence to present t h e i r ideas i f they had thought them through beforehand. Each of the student s u b j e c t s who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study had a h i s t o r y of s c h o o l i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s and f a i l u r e . I t i s apparent i n t h e i r somewhat sketchy Permanent Record f i l e s that these d i f f i c u l t i e s were only p a r t l y r e l a t e d to t h e i r unease with the language and l i t e r a c y demands of mainstream classrooms. The support systems r e q u i r e d f o r s u c c e s s f u l academic l e a r n i n g had never been i n p l a c e f o r these students — whether i n t h e i r home or t h e i r s c h o o l i n g environments. (Ed) i s a Native Indian. H i s home s i t u a t i o n i s such that he eats when he f e e l s l i k e i t - s l e e p s when he's t i r e d - has a poor d i e t - very l i t t l e to no p a r e n t a l guidance - misses a great d e a l of s c h o o l . Ed has very l i t t l e chance of success. (Ed, grade 6, age 10 years 7 months) (Fred) i s a very pleasant boy . . Great d i f f i c u l t y i n a p p l y i n g h i m s e l f to r o u t i n e school work. Attendance i s very poor . . Lacks d r i v e , content to get by. No i n t e r e s t i n t r a d i t i o n a l school s u b j e c t s . F r e d has been w e l l behaved and q u i e t , but has l i t t l e i n t e r e s t i n being i n a r e g u l a r classroom s i t u a t i o n . . Achievement was w e l l below grade l e v e l e x p e c t a t i o n s . . Background i n f o r m a t i o n was at the l e v e l expected f o r a 10-1/2 year o l d . He has r e t a i n e d c o n s i d e r a b l e information. about h i s environment, but nothing about knowledge he would have gained through s o c i a l s t u d i e s , i . e . no i n f o r m a t i o n that i s beyond the here and now. (Fred, grade 7, age 13 years 8 months) (Rob) i s p r e s e n t l y f u n c t i o n i n g w i t h i n the mid-average range of i n t e l l e c t u a l a b i l i t y . Rob's p o t e n t i a l i s h i g h e r , but due to some d i f f i c u l t y with 222 a r i t h m e t i c , l o s s of i n t e r e s t i n academics, a p r e - d e l i n q u e n t l i f e s t y l e and stormy past f a m i l i y h i s t o r y , he has been unable to achieve as w e l l as he might. (Rob, grade 6, 12 years 7 months) (Shireen) . . i s Native I n d i a n . Rather c a s u a l about attendance at s c h o o l . Takes p a r t i n some Native Indian f u n c t i o n s . . Hard.worker. Very independent. L i k e s s c h o o l . Very shy to express h e r s e l f v e r b a l l y . Q u i et. S l i g h t tendency to withdraw r a t h e r than make an e f f o r t to f i t i n t o a group . . Is able to compose independently s e v e r a l simple sentences on a given t o p i c . Sentences o f t e n show problems with word order, punctuation, s p e l l i n g , e t c . ( S h i r e e n , grade 4 completion, age 11) Teachers' and c o u n s e l l o r s ' statements suggest that they d i d not b e l i e v e that they c o u l d e f f e c t changes w i t h i n the s c h o o l i n g environment that would h e l p these students to improve t h e i r academic achievements. The r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r these students' p a t t e r n s of underachievement has been a t t r i b u t e d to f a c t o r s beyond the c o n t r o l of the s c h o o l . At the same time, these statements suggest that most of these students' parents were not i n a p o s i t i o n to give the kinds of support that teachers b e l i e v e d to be necessary. Each of the students was r e f e r r e d to Learning A s s i s t a n c e Centres and e v e n t u a l l y e n r o l l e d i n a l t e r n a t i v e programs such as Outreach where they would r e c e i v e more i n d i v i d u a l i z e d a t t e n t i o n than was p o s s i b l e i n mainstream classrooms. I t i s evident that these students are among the p o p u l a t i o n of students from low socio-economic circumstances who have many odds a g a i n s t them i n t h e i r attempts to succeed i n school (Breton 1972; Coleman 1966; Grubb and Lazerson 1982; P o r t e r 1965). I t i s a l s o e vident that these students f e l t that teachers' negative a t t i t u d e s towards them weighed i n with these odds. 223 / was glad I quit school . . I gave the principal a hard time 'cause he was as jerk . . he tried to whip me . . he didn't like Indians, I just had that feeling. In grade 7, I had a French teacher who was prejudice . . let's say the Native boy tried to answer his question in French and couldn't answer it . . then he got mad at the French teacher because the French teacher kept bugging him to say it when he couldn't say it because he wasn't French . . right? Most of the people in the class were French but the Natives . . So that guy . . just grabbed him and yanked him out of the school room. He got fired . . he did that to two Native boys . . Most Indians think or feel really self-conscious about being Indian . . I i ke i n my past I was called a I ot of names in elementary school . . And I had a friend went to college for about a year and a half to become a chef or something and he was called a lot of names and I think that people do think that that's what's goi n' to happen. At Port Hardy the teacher wasn't very nice . . Every time I tried to do an assignment . . she just wouldn't pass me the book . . She didn't like Natives . . She got fired a long time ago because I . . me and the other friend went to go tell . . on her . In grade one, I always had a teacher that would listen to me, tell me what was right and wrong . . in secondary, it started get tin' very bad . . Most of the students were prejudice and the teachers were too . . couldn't understand why though. When they assigned you something . . they only told you once and then you had to do it . . just like everybody else did . . They got their own school there now . . a high school on the reserve . . the school was too hard for them . . the teachers assigned too much work . . they assign you one thing and they gotta do it all in a couple days time . . The Native Indian students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study have q u i t e d i f f e r e n t c u l t u r a l and g e o g r a p h i c a l r o o t s but they have shared the experience of growing up i n one-parent or f o s t e r f a m i l i e s supported by government 224 maintenance. T h e i r l i v e s have a l l been a f f e c t e d by drug and a l c o h o l abuse and they had f i r s t - h a n d knowledge about the C r i m i n a l J u s t i c e System by the time they reached secondary s c h o o l . L i k e t h e i r p arents, most of these students had c h i l d r e n at a young age — at the time of t h i s w r i t i n g , three of the g i r l s and two of the boys have c h i l d r e n they are r a i s i n g with the help of t h e i r own par e n t s . L i k e students from any c u l t u r a l or r a c i a l background who have grown up with l i t t l e home s t a b i l i t y and who view education as a way to improve t h e i r s o c i a l and economic circumstances, these students e n r o l l e d at Outreach with the hope that they might complete grade ten and go on to job t r a i n i n g at one of the r e g i o n a l V o c a t i o n a l I n s t i t u t e s . Although they had been promoted through the elementary grades without the academic language and l i t e r a c y s k i l l s they needed f o r s u c c e s s f u l secondary school l e a r n i n g , they were s t i l l motivated to a c q u i r e these s k i l l s in order to have the chance f o r a b e t t e r l i f e f o r themselves and t h e i r c h i l d r e n . It was evident from the f i n d i n g s that there were common communication p a t t e r n s among the Native Indian students who p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h i s study. Although they have d i f f e r e n t c u l t u r a l o r i g i n s , most of t h e i r parents moved t h e i r f a m i l i e s i n t o Vancouver from r u r a l r e s e r v e s and towns. They remained c l o s e to t h e i r f a m i l i e s as many of t h e i r r e l a t i v e s had a l s o moved i n t o Vancouver and they made p e r i o d i c v i s i t s to t h e i r p a r e n t s' home communities. F u r t h e r , they i d e n t i f i e d 225 themselves w i t h i n the broad p o p u l a t i o n of low-income Native Indian peoples l i v i n g both i n Vancouver and on t h e i r home r e s e r v e s . Whether or not these students' communication p a t t e r n s o r i g i n a t e d i n t h e i r c u l t u r a l backgrounds, they d i d share a common dis c o m f o r t with t e a c h e r - d i r e c t e d classroom t a l k . They a l s o shared a common lack of f a m i l i a r i t y with academic d i s c o u r s e , whether o r a l or w r i t t e n , even a f t e r 8 - 1 1 years of formal e d u c a t i o n . I t appeared that few of t h e i r teachers had made ada p t a t i o n s i n t h e i r classroom p r a c t i c e s to a s s i s t t h e i r l e a r n i n g . And t h e i r parents had few resources to provide them with support. Although these students share many common background e x p e r i e n c e s , i t may be that t h e i r academic performance behaviors are more s i m i l a r to those of other non-Native students from low s o c i o -economic s t a t u s than other Native Indian students from more s t a b l e home backgrounds. F u r t h e r r e s e a r c h i s needed to i n v e s t i g a t e t h i s q u e s t i o n . O r a l and Wri t t e n R e l a t i o n s h i p s Comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e samples i n d i c a t e d that these two modes of d i s c o u r s e share many l e x i c a l and s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e s when samples are c o n t r o l l e d f o r context, t o p i c , audience and genre. The d i s c o u r s e samples were d i f f e r e n t i a t e d by the q u a l i t y of cohesiveness (with w r i t t e n n a r r a t i v e d e s c r i b e d as 'most cohesive' and o r a l academic as ' l e a s t cohesive') but there was c o n s i d e r a b l e o v e r l a p of l e x i c a l , s y n t a c t i c a l and r h e t o r i c a l 226 f e a t u r e s a c r o s s o r a l and w r i t t e n modes of d i s c o u r s e when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r n a r r a t i v e and academic genres. D i s t i n c t i o n s appeared t o have more to do with genre than mode. The f i n d i n g s f u r t h e r i n d i c a t e d a r e l a t i o n s h i p between the processes and products of the s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e . I t was evident that the processes of gen e r a t i n g academic and n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e were d i s t i n c t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t : s u b j e c t s produced fewer words per minute, paused more o f t e n , and paused longer d u r i n g the o r a l and w r i t t e n academic t a s k s . Students' comments suggested that academic d i s c o u r s e was not only more c o g n i t i v e l y demanding than n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e but that i t was a l s o more l i n g u i s t i c a l l y demanding. As with other students, more complex s y n t a c t i c a l s t r u c t u r e s were generated d u r i n g academic tasks and i t may be that these s t r u c t u r e s r e q u i r e d more time to formulate (Crowhurst and Piche 1979; Crowhurst 1980). These f i n d i n g s suggest the importance of accounting f o r genre, not only f o r the purposes of making s t r u c t u r a l comparisons of o r a l and w r i t t e n r e s e a r c h samples, but a l s o f o r d e s i g n i n g classroom a c t i v i t i e s . If students are given an academic assignment, i t may be that more time i s r e q u i r e d to complete the task than i f the assignment i s i n the n a r r a t i v e genre. F u r t h e r , i t i s apparent that d i f f e r e n t s y n t a c t i c a l s t r u c t u r e s w i l l emerge from academic and n a r r a t i v e t a s k s . If a w r i t i n g assignment i s being given to extend students' s y n t a c t i c a l o p t i o n s , i t appears that academic d i s c o u r s e w i l l f a c i l i t a t e t h i s aim. Although the 227 Outreach students had much d i f f i c u l t y with t h e i r academic t a s k s , a n a l y s i s of t h e i r s y n t a c t i c s t r u c t u r e s i n d i c a t e d that most of the s u b j e c t s were i n p o s s e s s i o n of s y n t a c t i c a l o p t i o n s that have been found to be a v a i l a b l e t o broader p o p u l a t i o n s of grade 8 - 10 students (Conry and Rodgers 1978; Crowhurst 1980; Hunt 1965; O'Donnell et a l 1967). Other language t h e o r i s t s have suggested that teachers need to be aware of the p o t e n t i a l developmental a f f e c t s of p a r t i c u l a r assignments (Mof f e t t 1968; Reeder 1982). Elementary and secondary students i n g e n e r a l have more d i f f i c u l t y with academic w r i t i n g ( o p i n i o n s and argument) than n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g (Crowhurst 1980; H i d i and H i l d y a r d 1983). I t may be that they have fewer assignments i n the academic genre and thus have l e s s f a m i l i a r i t y with the purpose and s t r u c t u r a l frameworks that shape academic d i s c o u r s e . Applebee (1981) found t h i s to be the case i n secondary schools i n the Uni-ted S t a t e s and as B r i t i s h Columbia's c u r r i c u l u m does not c a l l f o r c o n c e n t r a t e d w r i t i n g of formal r e s e a r c h essays u n t i l grade 12, t h i s was l i k e l y t r u e f o r the Outreach . students as w e l l . Much t h e o r e t i c a l debate has focused on the q u e s t i o n of f a c t o r s r e l a t e d to students' d i f f i c u l t y with composing s u s t a i n e d u n i t s of cohesive academic d i s c o u r s e . Some language t h e o r i s t s c o n s i d e r that students have d i f f i c u l t y with academic ( e s s a y i s t ) w r i t i n g because they r e l y too h e a v i l y on c o n v e r s a t i o n a l language s t r a t e g i e s (Olson and Torrance 1981). T h i s theory i s concerned with the 228 d i s t i n c t i o n s between the language demands of o r a l c o n v e r s a t i o n and w r i t t e n formal e x p o s i t o r y essays. I t i s argued t h a t the essay i s more c h a l l e n g i n g as i t r e q u i r e s an a b i l i t y to produce e x p l i c i t language that enables an unknown audience to a r r i v e at shared meanings with the w r i t e r about ( d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d ) i n f o r m a t i o n about matters that have not been mutually experienced. Others c o n s i d e r that students have d i f f i c u l t y composing o p i n i o n s and arguments (academic forms of w r i t i n g ) because they do not have e i t h e r c o n v e r s a t i o n a l or schematic a i d s to s u s t a i n t h e i r d i s c o u r s e ( B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia 1982; H i d i and H i l d y a r d 1983). B e r e i t e r and Scardamalia have conducted re s e a r c h with elementary aged c h i l d r e n (grades 4 - 8) that i n d i c a t e s that c h i l d r e n are a b l e to s u s t a i n longer u n i t s of w r i t i n g i f they are given sentence openers or c l o s i n g s to h e l p frame t h e i r thoughts. M o f f e t t ' s (1968) developmental model of language l e a r n i n g r e f l e c t s a b e l i e f that young l e a r n e r s have o f t e n not developed the c o g n i t i v e or l i n g u i s t i c resources f o r G e n e r a l i z i n g (the e x p o s i t i o n of what happens) or T h e o r i z i n g (the argumentation of what w i l l , may happen). These aspects of academic d i s c o u r s e are c o n s i d e r e d to be more c o g n i t i v e l y demanding than Reporting (the n a r r a t i v e of what happened) as w r i t e r s and speakers are r e q u i r e d to d i s t a n c e themselves e m o t i o n a l l y from t h e i r viewpoints and base t h e i r arguments on the s t r e n g t h of ' o b j e c t i v e ' (distanced) i n f o r m a t i o n or evidence. The d i s t a n c e between the w r i t e r / s p e a k e r and t o p i c 229 may be too c h a l l e n g i n g f o r young c h i l d r e n who have not yet a c q u i r e d an understanding of the nature of d e c o n t e x t u a l i z e d knowledge. F u r t h e r , academic d i s c o u r s e focuses on t o p i c , not on the r e l a t i o n s h i p between the s p e a k e r / w r i t e r — l i s t e n e r / r e a d e r . T h i s i s p a r t i c u l a r l y c h a l l e n g i n g f o r young c h i l d r e n f o r whom r e l a t i o n s h i p i s primary and message i s secondary. Although the students who were i n v o l v e d i n t h i s study were l e d i n t o o p e r a t i o n s of g e n e r a l i z i n g and t h e o r i z i n g , they were c l e a r l y much more at ease with r e p o r t i n g — w r i t i n g n a r r a t i v e s about what had happened i n t h e i r own l i v e s . I t was much more c h a l l e n g i n g f o r them to develop a b s t r a c t g e n e r a l i z e d arguments about knowledge and ideas that were out of t h e i r own p e r s o n a l experience than to recount remembered experiences. I t was a l s o c o n s i d e r a b l y more c h a l l e n g i n g f o r them to invent t h e i r own conceptual frameworks f o r t h e i r academic arguments than the time-sequenced frameworks f o r t h e i r p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e s . On a l l measures of performance, i t was evident that the s u b j e c t s had g r e a t e r f a c i l i t y with n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e than academic d i s c o u r s e . P r e l i m i n a r y i n v e s t i g a t i o n s suggested that n a r r a t i v e d i s c o u r s e might provide the b a s i s from which they would develop academic s t r a t e g i e s . As h i s t o r i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e s allow f o r the use of n a r r a t i v e , the f i r s t academic assignment requested the s u b j e c t s to c o n s i d e r an h i s t o r i c a l q u e s t i o n : Was l i f e b e t t e r f o r N a t i v e people before Europeans a r r i v e d ? T h i s assignment r e q u i r e d that the 230 s u b j e c t s develop general knowledge and t h i n k i n t h e o r e t i c a l ways w i t h i n time-sequenced frameworks. The next academic assignment r e q u i r e d the s u b j e c t s to formulate more open arguments: Would i t be good f o r N a t i v e people to s e t t l e t h e i r land c l a i m s ? While they were able to t h i n k temporally i n terms of Present and Future, they weren't able to simply make comparisons of what they knew about the Present and the Past. T h e i r arguments took on a number of v a r i e d frameworks depending upon t h e i r t h i n k i n g about the problem, and t h e i r r e l e v a n t knowledge base. T h i s f i n d i n g suggests that while teachers might h e l p students to s u s t a i n t h e i r t h i n k i n g by p r o v i d i n g them with schema a i d s , i t may be important to suggest o p t i o n a l schema i n order f o r students to understand that there are d i f f e r e n t ways that one might think about an academic problem. There i s evidence that some c o l l e g e l e v e l students concern themselves more with f u l f i l l i n g the requirements of a suggested format than with using the format as a means of a r r i v i n g at t h e i r own thoughts about an i s s u e ( F a r r and Janda 1985). I n t e r a c t i v e T a l k - W r i t e Composing While some r e s e a r c h e r s have been concerned with d e f i n i n g s t r u c t u r a l means of a i d i n g students i n t h e i r attempts to develop s u s t a i n e d arguments, o t h e r s have been more concerned with h e l p i n g c h i l d r e n to draw from t h e i r o r a l language resources as a means of extending these resources through w r i t i n g . O r a l and w r i t t e n language are not seen as 231 d i s t i n c t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t modes of communication but rather as two means of communication that draw from the same c o g n i t i v e , l i n g u i s t i c and knowledge resources of an i n d i v i d u a l . W r i t t e n language development draws on competence i n o r a l language s i n c e both share u n d e r l y i n g s t r u c t u r e s and s i n c e f o r most l e a r n e r s o r a l language competence reaches a high l e v e l e a r l i e r . As c h i l d r e n become l i t e r a t e the two systems become i n t e r a c t i v e and they use each to support the other when they need t o . (Goodman 1982, p. 264) B r i t t o n (1975) encourages tea c h e r s to have t h e i r students use e x p r e s s i v e w r i t i n g as a means of h e l p i n g them to a c q u i r e an understanding of the purpose of t r a n s a c t i o n a l (academic) w r i t i n g . With other language t h e o r i s t s , he argues that e x p r e s s i v e w r i t i n g a l l o w s c h i l d r e n to think i n a b s t r a c t and a n a l y t i c a l ways without f e e l i n g a l i e n a t e d from the language of t h e i r own thoughts and speech. Barnes (1976) extends t h i s p o s i t i o n by suggesting that c h i l d r e n a l s o b e n e f i t from engaging i n d i a l o g u e with one another d u r i n g the process of composing while they are d e v e l o p i n g t h e i r i d e a s , and during r e v i s i o n when they are c r a f t i n g t h e i r w r i t i n g f o r the b e n e f i t of a reader. Barnes d e f i n e d the term ' e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k ' , classroom t a l k intended to be open-ended and s p e c u l a t i v e . Graves (1983) l i k e w i s e observed the value of c h i l d r e n being encouraged to l i n k t h e i r t a l k with t h e i r w r i t i n g . He suggests that Conferencing s e s s i o n s between teacher and student ought to f o l l o w the p r i n c i p l e s of s c a f f o l d i n g , i d e n t i f i e d by Jerome Bruner as the manner i n which parents 232 support t h e i r t o d d l e r s ' a c q u i s i t i o n of o r a l language. Teachers, l i k e parents, are encouraged to p r o v i d e a s u p p o r t i v e context to encourage youngsters' e a r l y attempts at o r a l or w r i t t e n communication. Comments and q u e s t i o n s h e l p to c l a r i f y and extend the youngsters' o r a l or w r i t t e n content. While Z o e l l n e r (1969) had p r e v i o u s l y suggested that students might be aided i n t h e i r w r i t i n g by developing o r a l monologues p r i o r to t h e i r w r i t i n g , the f i n d i n g s of more recent i n v e s t i g a t i o n s suggest that d i r e c t i n t e r - p l a y between o r a l and w r i t t e n modes are more e f f e c t i v e . Sondra P e r l (1978) f u r t h e r suggested that i f s t u d e n t - s u b j e c t s were encouraged to i n t e r a c t with the r e s e a r c h e r d u r i n g case study o b s e r v a t i o n s , i t was l i k e l y that t h e i r q u e s t i o n s and comments would be r e v e a l i n g of t h e i r d i f f i c u l t i e s with w r i t i n g . P e r l ' s s p e c u l a t i o n helped to design t h i s study and i t proved to be f r u i t f u l . I t was evident throughout the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e s e s s i o n s t h a t the s u b j e c t s ' w r i t i n g processes were c o n s i d e r a b l y d i f f e r e n t when w r i t i n g n a r r a t i v e and when w r i t i n g an academic argument. Whereas most of the s u b j e c t s requested l i t t l e h e lp with t h e i r p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e s once they had s e t t l e d on a t o p i c , a l l of the s u b j e c t s were in need of h e l p during t h e i r academic w r i t i n g . They r e q u i r e d h e l p g e n e r a t i n g knowledge, t h i n k i n g about t h i s knowledge from d i f f e r e n t p e r s p e c t i v e s , d e c i d i n g upon a p o s i t i o n and o r g a n i z i n g t h e i r arguments f o r t h e i r p o s i t i o n s . E x p l o r a t o r y 233 t a l k was common throughout the academic w r i t i n g , but not the n a r r a t i v e w r i t i n g . The knowledge f a c t o r had many i m p l i c a t i o n s . Most of the s u b j e c t s d i d not b e l i e v e that they had enough knowledge to formulate a p o s i t i o n . However, dial o g u e helped them to become aware t h a t they d i d have knowledge to work with. I t was apparent throughout the a n a l y s i s of the t r a n s c r i p t s that these students were unused to having t h e i r p e r s o n a l knowledge r e c o g n i z e d as knowledge s u i t a b l e f o r s c h o o l i n g purposes. As t h i s knowledge was v a l i d a t e d , t h e i r i n t e r e s t i n t h e i r w r i t i n g tasks took on meaning and each of the s u b j e c t s became s t r o n g l y motivated to develop t h e i r own t h i n k i n g about t h i s knowledge. O r g a n i z i n g frameworks emerged from the t h i n k i n g s t r a t e g i e s that the s u b j e c t s used. I t was through e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k t h at knowledge was generated, arguments began to take shape and r h e t o r i c a l frameworks began to emerge. Thus, c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g processes o c c u r r e d throughout the t a l k - w r i t e p r o c e s s , not p r e l i m i n a r y to or upon completion of a f i r s t d r a f t . R e v i s i o n was a p a r t of the c o n c e p t u a l i z i n g p r o c e s s , not an adj u n c t . These students were u n f a m i l i a r with academic d i s c o u r s e , they d i d not have any schema to h e l p them to develop t h e i r arguments but ra t h e r the schema emerged from the process of t h e i r own t h i n k i n g . With the support of the r e s e a r c h e r ' s responses to t h e i r q u e s t i o n s , and comments, they developed w r i t i n g s t r a t e g i e s not u n l i k e those observed to be used by 234 accomplished w r i t e r s (Sommers 1979). Depending on the l i m i t s of t h e i r knowledge, some of the s u b j e c t s were able to develop q u a l i f i e d arguments, others assumed a p o s i t i o n and d i d not s t r a y from that p o s i t i o n . Thus, these f i n d i n g s suggest that while schema may be h e l p f u l , i t i s important f o r students to be presented with a range of o p t i o n a l schema fo r d e v e l o p i n g academic arguments. I t i s a l s o important f o r students to be encouraged to develop t h e i r own frameworks. The i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e process appeared to h e l p the s u b j e c t s develop a sense of d i s t a n c i n g . They began to t h i n k i n more g e n e r a l terms and became c r i t i c a l of t h e i r views i n terms of whether broader p o p u l a t i o n s of people might a l s o share these views, or how these views might a f f e c t broader p o p u l a t i o n s of people. While t h e i r w r i t i n g v o i c e remained p e r s o n a l i z e d , the t h i n k i n g expressed by t h i s v o i c e became more g e n e r a l i z e d . I t was a l s o important that the s u b j e c t s ' d e c e n t e r i n g process was a r e f l e c t i o n of the q u a n t i t y of knowledge that they were able to generate. Those who were able to make connections between the i s s u e s being c o n s i d e r e d and c o n c r e t e examples of s i t u a t i o n s that were a f f e c t e d by these i s s u e s were most able to a r r i v e at o b j e c t i v e c o n c l u s i o n s . I t i s important to i n t e r j e c t that while the s u b j e c t s ' independent w r i t i n g processes were i n h i b i t e d by concern f o r s p e l l i n g and other s u r f a c e e r r o r s , the e x p l o r a t o r y t a l k f r e e d the student to c o n c e n t r a t e on conceptual matters. I t i s a l s o important to recognize that while these s u b j e c t s 235 were uncomfortable with performance language, whether i n a one-to-one context or i n a classroom, the w r i t i n g t a s k s , p a r t i c u l a r l y the academic w r i t i n g , s t i m u l a t e d t h e i r t a l k . Once they understood that there were no r i g h t or wrong answers, they were w i l l i n g to brave s p e c u l a t i v e t h i n k i n g , both o r a l l y and i n w r i t i n g . The i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e process a l s o appeared to have a p o s i t i v e e f f e c t on the s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n performances i n the academic genre. T h i s process helped them to i n t e g r a t e and organize t h e i r knowledge and thoughts and they were a b l e to present s u s t a i n e d o r a l statements a f t e r completing t h e i r w r i t i n g . The s u b j e c t s expressed that they would be more w i l l i n g to p a r t i c i p a t e i n classroom d i s c u s s i o n s i f they c o u l d f i r s t formulate t h e i r thoughts through such a p r o c e s s . The value of w r i t i n g t o l e a r n r ather than w r i t i n g f o r assessment purposes was most evident d u r i n g the academic w r i t i n g s e s s i o n s . I t was a l s o evident that premature concern f o r form c o u l d i n h i b i t e x p l o r a t o r y thought and that more time may be r e q u i r e d f o r students to be able to develop t h e i r t h i n k i n g apart from communication c o n s i d e r a t i o n s . Zamel (1983) suggests that s k i l l e d w r i t e r s not only generate knowledge but the form best to express t h i s knowledge — through e x p l o r a t i o n . She suggests that students need to be encouraged to enter i n t o t h i s e x p l o r a t o r y process with t h e i r t e a c h e r s ' support. Others agree with t h i s p e r s p e c t i v e (Applebee 1981; Barr 1982; Doyle 1983; Emig 1983; Epes 1985; H a r t w e l l 1980; Healy 1984). 236 I t i s f u r t h e r evident that while the r h e t o r i c a l d evices common to formal academic w r i t i n g may not be apparent i n i n f o r m a l c o n v e r s a t i o n a l language, there i s c o n s i d e r a b l e s t r u c t u r a l o v e r l a p i n the o r a l and w r i t t e n language of d i v e r s e p o p u l a t i o n s of students and p r o f e s s i o n a l s (Cayer and Sacks 1979; Epes 1985; F a r r and Janda 1985; H i d i and H i l d y a r d 1983; Shaughnessy 1977; Tannen 1982; Wolfram et al. 1979). The issue seems to be weighed on the s i d e of those who are l e s s concerned with the c h a l l e n g e of developing e s s a y i s t w r i t i n g s k i l l s from o r a l c o n v e r s a t i o n a l s k i l l s and are more concerned with h e l p i n g students to a c q u i r e c o g n i t i v e and l i n g u i s t i c o p t i o n s from which t h e i r o r a l and w r i t t e n language might serve a v a r i e t y of purposes in a wide range of c o n t e x t s , whether i n c o n v e r s a t i o n or monologue. The s c a f f o l d i n g technique used throughout the i n t e r a c t i v e t a l k - w r i t e process appeared to have had a p o s i t i v e e f f e c t i n t h i s d i r e c t i o n . The s u b j e c t s ' o r a l and w r i t t e n d i s c o u r s e o p t i o n s were extended from p e r s o n a l n a r r a t i v e towards gen e r a l academic genre. 237 R E F E R E N C E S A d l e r , H.J. & Brusegard, D.A. (E d s . ) . (1980). Perspectives Canada III. 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Can you remember anyone reading to you at home when you were l i t t l e ? Who? What would s/he read to you? 8. How old were you when you learned to read? 9. Do you like to read now? Do you read at home? What do you read? Does anyone else in your family like to read? What? 10. Do you think i t i s important to know how to read? Explain. 11. What do you need to he able to read? 12. How old were you when you learned to write? 13- Do you write at home? What do you write? 1 .^ Does anyone i n your family like to write? What? 15. Do you think i t i s important to know how to write? (Probe) 16. What kind of writing does a person need to be able to do in our society? 17. Have you had problems with your writing i n school? What kinds of writing do you find the most d i f f i c u l t ? What kinds writing do you find the easiest? [on cards 1 friendly letters, school essays. f i l l i n g in forms, writing an imaginary story] Most D i f f i c u l t -Easiest-Why i s writing so d i f f i c u l t ? Why i s _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ writing easy? 18. When you went to high school at were there writing assignments that you could not do? What kinds of writing assignments were they? What was hard about the assignments? 19. Why did you leave assignments) ? (Probe re. writing 2 5 4 20. What was your attendance like at Why did you miss so much school? 2 1 . How i s Outreach different than 2 2 . Oo you find i t easier to do the reading and writing assign-ments at Outreach? What makes i t easier for you? 2 3 . When you went to » did you participate i n class discussions? (Probe.) 24. Would you ask questions during class? 2 5 . Would you talk privately with some of your teachers after class? Describe the kind of teacher you could talk to. 26. At Outreach, you do/don't participate i n class discussion. Is there anything about the way classes are at Outreach that makes i t easier/harder to talk during class discussions? 255 27' How do you learn best how to do things? [On cards i reading/listening to a teacher talk/participating i n class discussion/ writing a research essay/ talking one-to-one with a teacher, parent or friend/ watchingt.v. or a movie/ watching someone do what I want to learn how to do] What would your second best way of learning how to do something be? Can you t e l l me why these ways of learning are best for you? 28. How do you learn best how to think? [Show cards again.] What would be your second best way of learning how to think? Can you t e l l me why these ways of learning how to think are best for you? 2 9 . Do you think that talking with people i s a good way to learn how to do things? (Probe.) Is x£ a good way to learn how to think?(Probe.) 30. Do you think that writing i s a good way to learn how to think? (Probe) 31. Why do teachers do a lot of talking? 32. Why do teachers want students to talk and ask questions? 33- Why do teachers give students writing assignments? 34. What do you think you should be learning about at school? 35« What do you think you should be learning how to do at school? e 256 36. During summer holidays or school breaks l i k e Christmas and Easter do you travel? Where do you go? How do you usually travel? (Probe.) What i s the furthest you have travelled from your home? What did you do there? 37. What do you do for fun? Do you ever go to plays? movies? T e l l me about a play/movie you've seen. What are a couple more you really liked? Do you know why you liked them? 38. Do you have a library card? Do you go to the library very often? Why or why not? What kinds of books do you check out? 39» Do you ever v i s i t museums? If so, which ones? What did you find most interesting at the museum? If not, why? 40. Have you ever taken lessons to play an instrument? art lessons? dance or drama? 41. Do you have any hobbies? 257 42. Do you participate in Native cultural traditions? (pow-wow, potlatch, fishing, drying foods) 43. Have you had any part-time jobs? 44. What do you want to do when you f i n i s h school? 45. How much education do you want? 46. What do you see in your future? (A year from now? Five years from now?) 47. What would your parents like you to do when you've finished school? 48. How much education do your parents have? What kinds of jobs have they had? 49. Would you like to ask me any questions about this interview? APPENDIX B OVERVIEW OF CASE STUDY 259 CASE STUDY DESIGN TOPIC I Narrative Session 1 TOPIC II Academic Session 1 TOPIC III Narrative Session 1 Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write composing process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews Session 2 Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write revision process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write composing process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews Session 2 Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write revision process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write composing process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews Session 2 Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write revision process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews TOPIC IV Academic Session 1 Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write composing process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews Session 2 Pre-writing warm-up talk and directions Interactive talk-write revision process Writing Sample Oral Retelling Spontaneous Interviews OTHER DATA: (1) B.C. Ministry Writing Assessments (Narrative/Opinion) (2) Reading Scores as assessed by Gates-McGinite Form E (3) Observations of students' classroom writing behaviors (4) Assessments and Comments noted in permanent record f i l e s (5) Informal interviews with other teachers (6) Formal interviews with students following the completion of structured sessions. APPENDIX C WRITING ASSESSMENT ASSIGNMENTS AND RATING SCALES 261 GRADE B NARRATIVE EXERCISE WHATS THE STORY? Problems are a part of life. Everyone faces them almost every day. Sometimes problems are large but often they are small: something we need or would like to have, something we don't want to do. or something we forget to do. Sometimes it is another person who is making us sad or we are making them angry! Whatever the problem is. it makes a story. ASSIGNMENT: Look at the people in the photo-graphs on the next page. Each of them has a problem. Choose the one person you want to write about and decide what the problem is. Now wnte a story telling about this person, the problem, and the solution. You may add any other characters you need. Try to make your characters and story as realistic as possible. 262 NARRATIVE WRITING (OVERALL EFFECTIVENESS) EXERCISE 2: PEOPLE SCALE FOR NARRATIVE WRITING Prior to assigning these exercises, students require practice 1n attempting to address specific topics. Scale Point 1: Either Incomprehensible OR no attempt to address the topic. Scale Point 2: Minimal attempt to tell a story. Mechanical problems are excessive. Serious problems with coherence and unity. Comprehension difficult. Scale Point 3: Either attempts to tell a story, but style 1s Ineffective and mechanical problems excessive rendering comprehension difficult OR mechanically satisfactory but falls to tell a story. Scale Point 4: Attempts to tell a story. Reasonably clear, but no evidence of originality. Lapses In unity and coherence. Scale Point 5: Content 1s fairly thin although there 1s some attempt at origin-ality. A story Is told with evidence of coherence, unity and reasonable command of the language. Style tends to be conver-sational. Some problems with mechanics most often In spelling and sentence structure. Sentences lack control and variety. Often wordy and repetitious. Scale Point 6: Evidence of originality. Good use of detail. Some attempt at characterization. However, contain problems with unity, coherence and mechanics. Scale Point 7: Workmanlike. Written with clarity and organization but not a great deal of originality. No serious errors. Use of mechanics and writing style acceptable. Character(s) may be realistic, but problem and Its development and resolution pedestrian. Scale Point 8: Well developed narrative. Generally, the introduction is effective although the resolution may not be strong. Some attempt at characterization. Vocabulary, style and mechanics above average for grade level. Scale Point 9: Establishes a realistic character with an interesting problem. Evidence of originality. The conclusion is effective, and may have an interesting twist. The ending is 'honest' in terms of development. Good paragraph structure and organization. Precision in use of language. No serious mechanical flaws. Shows a great deal of promise as a writer. GRADE 8 EXPOSITORY EXERCISE WRITING AN OPINION Teenagers make up one of the largest groups who watch television. Some people think teen-agers, especially those between 12 to 14 years of age will watch anything. Do you believe this? Or are there special kinds of shows that you and your friends like to watch? If you were asked by a TV company to give your opinion on the type of show teenagers would like to see. what kinds of main characters would you suggest? What kinds of things should happen to them? Where might they live? ASSIGNMENT: Imagine that you have been asked to advise a TV company about a new show for teenage audiences. In your opinion, what kinds of characters, should be in the story? Where and when should it take place? Explain why you think your show would appeal to teenagers. GRADE 8 EXPOSITORY WRITING SUBSCALE FOR ORGANIZATION Basis of the scale: Presentation of an idea (thesis, topic or problem) which is systematically developed and resolved or concluded. Scale Point 1: No organization evident. Reference to thesis or topic typically vague or omitted. Lack of sequence. Relationship of elements obscure—conclusion may have no relation to topic or development. Little or no attempt at transition ("and... a n d . . . and then . . typical). Inappropriate or no paragraphing. Scale Point 2: Some organization apparent, although lapses in unity and coherence occur. Conclusion may fail to relate in introduction and development. Topic may not be clear. Often evidence of problems in paragraphing. Scale Point 3: Thesis, development and conclusion evident but relationship may be awkwardly handled. Lapses in unity. Paragraphing often inappropriate or lacking. Scale Point 4: Thesis, development and conclusion evident and systematically related. Paragraphing appropriate. Each paragraph displays unity and coherence. 264 EXPOSITORY WRITING (OVERALL EFFECTIVENESS) EXERCISE 2: TELEVISION SCALE FOR EXPOSITORY WRITING Scale Point 1 : Either no serious attempt to address the topic OR in-comprehensible. Scale Point 2: Attempts to address the topic but content 'thin* - few ideas presented - AND mechanical problems are excessive. Serious problems with coherence and unity. Comprehension difficult. Scale Point 3: Either attempts to make a statement, but style ineffective and mechanical problems excessive. OR Virtually no content, but style and mechanics are reasonable. Scale Point 4; Serious attempt to address the topic, but no evidence of originality or maturity. Often serious problems in organization and development. Lack fluency. Frequently wordy. Scale Point 5: Content fairly thin although there is some minimal evidence of originality. Generalizations are somewhat pedestrian, but are presented with some support. Awareness of style and fluency apparent. Acceptable command of language for grade level. Some problems with unity and coherence. Hay rely on 'conversational' style Inappropriately. Arguments tend to be somewhat flawed -unconvincing or illogical. Scale Point 6: Either shows maturity of thought or originality, but contains excessive problems relating to coherence, unity and mechanics. OR Little evidence of maturity or originality, but organization, vocabulary and mechanics satisfactory. Scale Point 7: Some maturity of thought but not a great deal of orginality. Good use of detail and specificity with vocabulary above average. Written with clarity and evidence of paragraphing and organization. Writing style and use of mechanics acceptable. Scale Point 8: Originality and maturity of thought evident. Opinions are sub-stantiaged. Fluent errors. May contai t. Style and usage satisfactory with infrequent in minor lapses in organization and development. Scale Point 9 : 'Shows a great deal of promise as a writer'. Thesis or central idea is effectively pre