You are on page 1of 6

Clancy

Ratliff Alignment of WPA Outcomes Statement and Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts (Grades 11-12, College and Career Readiness) WPA Outcomes Statement Common Core State for First-Year Writing Standards for 11th-12th grade English Language Arts Rhetorical Focus on a purpose Produce clear and coherent Knowledge writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. Respond to the needs of Develop claim(s) and different audiences counterclaims fairly and thoroughly, supplying the most relevant evidence for each while pointing out the strengths and limitations of both in a manner that anticipates the audiences knowledge level, concerns, values, and possible biases. Respond appropriately to different kinds of rhetorical situations Use conventions of format Establish and maintain a and structure appropriate to formal style and objective tone the rhetorical situation while attending to the norms Adopt appropriate voice, tone, and conventions of the discipline in which they are and level of formality writing. Understand how genres shape reading and writing Write in several genres Critical Use writing and reading for Conduct short as well as more Thinking, inquiry, learning, thinking, sustained research projects to Reading, and and communicating answer a question (including a Writing self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject

Understand a writing assignment as a series of tasks, including finding, evaluating, analyzing, and synthesizing appropriate primary and secondary sources Integrate their own ideas with those of others

Processes

Knowledge of Conventions

Understand the relationships among language, knowledge, and power Be aware that it usually takes multiple drafts to create and complete a successful text Develop flexible strategies for generating, revising, editing, and proof-reading Understand writing as an open process that permits writers to use later invention and re-thinking to revise their work Understand the collaborative and social aspects of writing processes Learn to critique their own and others' works Learn to balance the advantages of relying on others with the responsibility of doing their part Use a variety of technologies to address a range of audiences Learn common formats for different kinds of texts Develop knowledge of genre conventions ranging from

under investigation. Gather relevant information from multiple authoritative print and digital sources, using advanced searches effectively; assess the strengths and limitations of each source in terms of the task, purpose, and audience; integrate information into the text selectively to maintain the flow of ideas, avoiding plagiarism and overreliance on any one source and following a standard format for citation. Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on addressing what is most significant for a specific purpose and audience.

Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products in response to ongoing feedback, including new arguments or information.

Use precise language, domain- specific vocabulary, and

Composing in Electronic Environments

Common Core State Standards

structure and paragraphing to techniques such as metaphor, tone and mechanics simile, and analogy to manage the complexity of the topic. Use appropriate and varied transitions and syntax to link the major sections of the text, create cohesion, and clarify the relationships among complex ideas and concepts. Practice appropriate means of documenting their work Control such surface features Use words, phrases, and as syntax, grammar, clauses as well as varied syntax punctuation, and spelling. to link the major sections of the text, create cohesion, and clarify the relationships between claim(s) and reasons, between reasons and evidence, and between claim(s) and counterclaims. Use electronic environments Use technology, including the for drafting, reviewing, Internet, to produce, publish, revising, editing, and sharing and update individual or texts shared writing products in response to ongoing feedback, including new arguments or information. Locate, evaluate, organize, Write informative/explanatory and use research material texts to examine and convey collected from electronic complex ideas, concepts, and sources, including scholarly information clearly and library databases; other accurately through the official databases (e.g., federal effective selection, government databases); and organization, and analysis of informal electronic networks content. and internet sources Understand and exploit the differences in the rhetorical strategies and in the affordances available for both print and electronic composing processes and texts Introduce precise, knowledgeable claim(s), establish the significance of the claim(s), distinguish the claim(s) from

that have no clear counterpart in the WPA Outcomes

alternate or opposing claims, and create an organization that logically sequences claim(s), counterclaims, reasons, and evidence. Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented. Introduce a topic; organize complex ideas, concepts, and information so that each new element builds on that which precedes it to create a unified whole; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., figures, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension. Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the information or explanation presented (e.g., articulating implications or the significance of the topic). Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well- structured event sequences. Engage and orient the reader by setting out a problem, situation, or observation and its significance, establishing one or multiple point(s) of view, and introducing a narrator and/or characters; create a smooth progression of experiences or events. Use narrative techniques, such as dialogue, pacing, description, reflection, and multiple plot lines, to develop experiences, events, and/or characters. Use a variety of techniques to sequence events so that they build on one another to create a coherent whole and build toward a particular tone and outcome (e.g., a sense of mystery, suspense, growth, or resolution). Use precise words and phrases, telling details, and sensory language to convey a vivid picture of the experiences, events, setting, and/or characters. Provide a conclusion that follows from and reflects on what is experienced, observed, or resolved over the course of the narrative. Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.

Immediate impressions of the differences between the CCSS and the WPA OS: 1. Contexts are emphasized more in the WPA OS. School (academic writing) is assumed to be the major or only context in the CCSS. The WPA OS has the outcome Respond appropriately to different kinds of rhetorical situations, and there isnt anything in the CCSS that captures that outcome. Another bit of evidence is the critical pedagogy-informed outcome Understand the relationships among language, knowledge, and power from the WPA OS, which also has no counterpart in the CCSS. Same with the WPA OS outcome Understand and exploit the differences in the rhetorical strategies and in the affordances available for both print and electronic composing processes and texts. 2. Genres are treated differently in the two sets of outcomes. The CCSS makes no mention of the term genre, but rather seems to follow the outdated, discredited model of the modes, exposition, description, narration, and argument (EDNA). Outcomes are neatly divided into arguments, informative/explanatory texts, and narratives. The WPA OS doesnt define genre as theyre using it, but its safe to assume they mean different texts like proposals, letters to the editor, op-ed pieces, white papers, abstracts, recommendation letters, minutes of meetings, etc. 3. The CCSS devote much more attention to issues of organization: introductions, transitions, conclusions. They have specific outcomes devoted to these. Presumably the WPA OS understands organization as implicit in rhetorical strategies for particular audiences. 4. The CCSS has a section of outcomes devoted to narrative: literary techniques for fiction and nonfiction. 5. Going back for a moment to the power outcome in the WPA statement, in the CCSS introduction (not part of the standards themselves), this description is given for college- and career-ready students: Students appreciate that the twenty-first-century classroom and workplace are settings in which people from often widely divergent cultures and who represent diverse experiences and perspectives must learn and work together. Students actively seek to understand other perspectives and cultures through reading and listening, and they are able to communicate effectively with people of varied backgrounds. They evaluate other points of view critically and constructively. Through reading great classic and contemporary works of literature representative of a variety of periods, cultures, and worldviews, students can vicariously inhabit worlds and have experiences much different than their own. By eliding the issue of power, the CCSS suggests that everyone has equal status and is in an equally strong position from which to evaluate and critique. I think this is naive and a copout.

Comparison of Categories in WPA OS and CCSS The alignment I did was oriented toward the WPA OS it was for people who are familiar with the WPA OS and used its categories, which are in the far left column. The CCSS outcomes are also in categories, and I think its important to compare these: WPA Outcomes Statement Common Core State Standards Categories Categories Rhetorical Knowledge Text Types and Purposes Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing Production and Distribution of Writing Processes Research to Build and Present Knowledge Knowledge of Conventions Range of Writing Composing in Electronic Environments