Reframing Writing Assessment to Improve Teaching and Learning

By Linda Adler-Kassner; Peggy O’Neill | Go to book overview

2
FRAMING (AND) AMERICAN
EDUCATION

In chapter one, we suggested that postsecondary writing instruction and writing assessment orbits are at the center of a very large galaxy that includes questions about the purpose of a college education, expectations of “productive” citizens, and, ultimately, the nation’s successful progress.

From documents like Ready or Not, an influential report published by the American Diploma Project (Achieve 2004), memos published by or in association with the Voluntary System of Accountability (e.g., McPherson and Shulenberger 2006), and other policy reports, it’s possible to piece together a dominant narrative about the exigency surrounding these discussions about education. The problem, this story says, is that students aren’t learning what they need to in order to be successful twenty-first- century citizens in postsecondary (or secondary) education. This story is so consistently repeated, in fact, that its components are interchangeable. “Three hundred and seventy years after the first college in our fledgling nation was established,” begins A Test of Leadership, the report from the Spellings Commission, “higher education in the United States has become one of our greatest success stories” (Miller 2006, ix). “But even as we bask in the afterglow of past achievements,” says Accountability for Better Results, a study published by the National Commission on Accountability in Higher Education (affiliated with the State Higher Education Executive Officers), “a starker reality is emerging on the horizon” (State Higher Education 2005, 6). “Where the United States was once the international leader in granting college degrees,” notes Ready to Assemble: Grading State Higher Education Accountability Systems, “we’ve now

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Reframing Writing Assessment to Improve Teaching and Learning
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Acknowledgments vii
  • 1 - Higher Education, Framing, and Writing Assessment 1
  • 2 - Framing (and) American Education 13
  • 3 - The Framing of Composition and Writing Assessment 40
  • 4 - Reframing Strategies and Techniques 81
  • 5 - Reframing in Action 110
  • 6 - Reframing Assessment 145
  • 7 - Reimagining Writing Assessment 179
  • References 192
  • Index 205
  • About the Authors 208
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