Prewriting

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Hello again and welcome back to academic writing 101 today we will begin our lecture series with Section

1 entitled The writing process.

So I hate to break it to you but successful academic writing is a process.

So say goodbye to those days of waiting until the day before the deadline to write your papers hoping

that you’ll get a good grade.

Sure some students can still pull that off from time to time even in college.

I remember doing that once or twice as an undergraduate and receiving grades I didn’t really deserve.

The majority of students can never get away with it consistently.

Believe me I have seen many many who continue to try despite my warnings not to.

Besides by not pushing yourself through the writing process you rub yourself with a critical expiration

great academic writing invites and is supposed to encourage.

But OK I’ll climb down from my soapbox for just a second and give you the essential ideas of the writing

process.

So for a successful college writing the writing process includes four steps that is to pre write to

outline to draft and finally to revise.

Often when I introduce this process to my students they complain that they don’t have the time but I

promise you if you follow the simple four step process with each of your future writing assignments

no matter how short or long they may be your writing will improve and you’ll realize that it will begin

to take you less time to write and to write well as you work through this process than if you decide

not to.

So throughout the next few lectures We’ll talk about each and each part of the writing process in detail

with tips and strategies and all the essentials that you need to do each part.

Well first they will only focus on the first.

So let’s talk about pre-writing.

What do I mean when I say the word pre write.

Pre-writing is simply the process of exploring your immediate ideas in response to any given topic or

assignment.

It is an exercise to force yourself to begin exploring how your ideas connects to one another.

Pre-writing In other words is simply a fancy word for brainstorming.

Everyone has their own way or technique of brainstorming.

So I’d like to introduce you today to two effective brainstorming techniques.

When it comes to writing the first is simply to free write so free writing is a process where we write

down whatever comes to mind in response to the given assignment with no regard to form grammar punctuation

and so on just right.

I know it sounds ridiculous but it really is an effective way of forcing our mind to process the assignment

and to explore what are automatic automatic responses are.

The other is to to come up with an idea that some people are so called a mind map you’ve probably done

this all the way back through high school but an idea map or a mind map is more of a drawing rather

than writing.

So simply an illustration of your ideas showing how to group and connect your individual ideas.

Let me give you an example of each so you can see what I’m talking about.

So we have the assignment like the one here on the board right write a two to three page critical response

to the following statement.

A mandatory national curriculum is the best way to prepare students for college so to free write if

we were to free write.

Here’s an example.

These are my immediate My immediate thoughts are ideas and response to this assignment prompt.

No it’s not.

Not every student is the same.

Not every student has the same interests or goals or reasons for going to school.

A mandatory national curriculum stuns the potential growth of some while not addressing the learning

difficulties of others.

This is a terrible idea.

So again these are simply some of my immediate responses to the assignment.

So it’s nothing fancy it’s nothing overly profound.

It is simply to get my mind working through the process of responding to this question or to the statement

as we work through the steps of the writing process I’ll return to this free writing exercise to show

you where we move where we go from there.

So of course this might seem a little bit pointless to write down our immediate response thinking out

we have it all in our head already.

But again as we work through the next few mini lectures in this section I’ll return to this free writing

exercise to show you how this is an effective tool to begin to construct her writing assignments.

The next one of course is the idea map again in response to the same assignment and idea map.

Start with the topic which is the national curriculum.

We then make our drawings simply with arrows nothing fancy to the different things are different ideas

the different categories of ideas that come to mind automatically.

So one of the questions that comes to my mind in response to a national curriculum is what is taught

another one would be types of students.

So addressing the different types of students.

The final one would be arguments for.

It’s always great to have that as a category to show that you’ve processed or at least considered some

of the arguments that will go against your own argument and then beneath each category simply list a

couple of ideas or subtopics for example under what is taught.

Focus on math and science determined by the majority.

So again these are just my initial rough draft ideas of what how I respond to a national curriculum

and what is taught the next would be types of students.

So here I’ve simply listed a couple of different types of students I encounter these types of students

in the classroom every day.

We have hands on students students that are just disinterested or students that are really wanting to

excel and do everything they can to learn every possible thing they can about any given subject.

Finally we have arguments for number one.

Maybe it ensures that all students reach a certain standard level of academic achievement.

It provides every student with the same opportunity to learn and to go to school.

And it’s also easy to monitor.

So we can do our standardized testing and make sure that everyone can pass the standardized test.

Again this is this.

This is just an example of my own immediate response to the assignment that is given and I’m forcing

myself to put these ideas onto paper.

Forcing myself to think through how I would respond and what my responses might be and then to put them

on paper just like the free writing as we work through the writing process the different steps of the

writing process will return to this idea map to show how it is useful to craft the rest of your paper.

So let’s review really quickly to conclude for today.

Pre-write is simply brainstorming on paper.

So getting those ideas out of your head and onto paper.

We have the two techniques we have free writing and making and making an idea map and that’s it.

That’s the first step of the writing process.

Next time we’ll talk about outlining the second step of the writing process and will relate well we’ll

carry on ideas from free writing an idea mapping onto the outline to show how this is a ongoing process

how each step relates to the next.

So thank you for today and we’ll see you again soon.

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