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Writing as discovery

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Background: although writing is commonly characterized as a process of discovery, there are contrasting conceptions of what this implies about the writing process. Classical models of the cognitive processes in writing treat discovery as a side-effect of the processes required for effective communication, and associate it with the adaptation of thought to rhetorical goals.

Aims: in this paper, I argue that these models overemphasize the role of explicit thinking processes in writing at the expense of more implicit text production processes.

Arguments: following a review of research investigating the conditions under which writers discover new ideas through writing, which I argue contradicts important features of the classical account of discovery, I outline an alternative dual-process model of writing which I claim provides a better account of the empirical data.

Conclusions: the model identifies two conflicting processes in writing: an explicit planning process, incorporating many of the features assumed by classical models of writing, and an implicit text production process, which operates according to connectionist processing principles. The basic features of these processes are described, and the complementary role they play in writing is discussed

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Citation

Galbraith, David (2009) Writing as discovery In, Connelly, Vincent, Barnett, Anna L., Dockrell, Julie E. and Tolmie, Andrew (eds.) Teaching and Learning Writing. Leicester, GB, British Psychological Society pp. 5-26. (British Journal of Educational Psychology Monograph Series II, 6). (doi:10.1348/978185409X421129).

More information

Published date: 2009
Additional Information: notValidatingIssn:20448279 notValidatingIssn:00070998
Organisations: Southampton Education School

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 337490
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/337490
ISBN: 1854334905
PURE UUID: 17d156f7-176e-4e8c-b213-fe70d1a1a3c5

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 26 Apr 2012 12:54
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 06:02

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Contributors

Author: David Galbraith
Editor: Vincent Connelly
Editor: Anna L. Barnett
Editor: Julie E. Dockrell
Editor: Andrew Tolmie

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