Academic Literacy and the Nature of Expertise

Academic Literacy and the Nature of Expertise

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The first full-length account integrating both the cognitive and sociological aspects of reading and writing in the academy, this unique volume covers educational research on reading and writing, rhetorical research on writing in the disciplines, cognitive research on expertise in ill-defined problems, and sociological and historical research on the professions. The author produced this volume as a result of a research program aimed at understanding the relationship between two concepts -- literacy and expertise -- which traditionally have been treated as quite separate phenomena. A burgeoning literature on reading and writing in the academy has begun to indicate fairly consistent patterns in how students acquire literacy practices. This literature shows, furthermore, that what students do is quite distinct from what experts do. While many have used these results as a starting point for teaching students qhow to be expert, q the author has chosen instead to ask about the interrelationship between expert and novice practice, seeing them both as two sides of the same project: a cultural-historical qprofessionalization projectq aimed at establishing and preserving the professional privilege. The consequences of this qprofessionalization projectq are examined using the discipline of academic philosophy as the qsiteq for the author's investigations. Methodologically unique, these investigations combine rhetorical analysis, protocol analysis, and the analysis of classroom discourse. The result is a complex portrait of how the participants in this humanistic discipline use their academic literacy practices to construct and reconstruct a great divide between expert and lay knowledge. This monograph thus extends our current understanding of the rhetoric of the professions and examines its implications for education.After reading passages selected from high school social studies texts, 208 students, half from 9th-grade English classes in ... the 1 1th grade, engaged in one of four study conditions: normal studying, note taking, answering study questions, and analytic writing. Four weeks later, students took a 20-item multiple -choice comprehension test as well as a recall test similar to that used earlier by Newell (1984).

Title:Academic Literacy and the Nature of Expertise
Author: Cheryl Geisler
Publisher:Routledge - 2013-11-05

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