OAKLAND, Calif. - November 15, 2017 - New historical analysis writing prompts for Turnitin Revision Assistant—a digital teaching tool giving students immediate, actionable feedback while they write—support writing instruction in content areas beyond English/Language Arts. Students, educators say, need direct writing instruction in all curriculum areas in order to write effectively and analyze domain-specific texts. Revision Assistant is one way to give students more meaningful practice across disciplines without adding stacks of essays to a teacher’s grading pile. Click to Tweet.
By the middle school years, writing assignments in subject areas outside of English/Language Arts tend to be only a paragraph in length says Arizona State University professor and researcher Steve Graham. He adds that writing is more important now than ever before due to digital communications. Students need to learn how to write clearly and purposefully in either short or long formats because our society spends so much time expressing themselves electronically. Dr. Graham expands on this topic in a podcast The Written Word, sponsored by Turnitin.
Social studies teachers who are tasked with teaching history and civics rarely have time to give direct writing instruction. This may be a reason why their writing assignments tend to be shorter. However, Revision Assistant is one tool teachers can use to give meaningful writing instruction and relevant feedback without adding to their workload. With Revision Assistant, students write to a prompt, such as an argumentative essay on the Modern Revolution. At any time while writing, students can request a Signal Check and Revision Assistant will immediately give four points of feedback specific to their essay.
“We know we need to be teaching writing but we can’t do that in a meaningful way when we need to teach social studies standards at the same time,” said Caren Ray, the social studies department chair at Santa Maria High School in California. “I used to do abbreviated writing exercises because of time challenges but with Revision Assistant, I was able to assign a poetry analysis to my students, and the program gave students feedback in a manner they could intuitively understand.”
A new historical analysis genre and new historical analysis prompts will be available in December 2017 and more will be released in 2018. Historical analysis prompts in Revision Assistant align with disciplinary literacy state standards including the Common Core, as well as the College, Career, and Civic Life Framework for Social Studies.
Turnitin is committed to building better writers, with integrity. Turnitin’s formative feedback and originality checking services promote critical thinking, ensure academic integrity, and help students improve their writing. Turnitin provides instructors with the tools to engage students in the writing process, provide personalized feedback, and assess student progress over time. Turnitin is used by more than 30 million students at 15,000 institutions in 140 countries. Backed by Insight Venture Partners, GIC, Norwest Venture Partners, Lead Edge Capital and Georgian Partners, Turnitin is headquartered in Oakland, Calif., with international offices in Newcastle, U.K., Utrecht, Netherlands, Melbourne, Australia, Seoul, Korea, Delhi, India, and throughout Latin America.@Turnitin