What We Can Do to Promote College Readiness in Writing

Recommendations from the July 2008 and 2009 Open Institutes

  1. Promote more dialogue between high school teachers and college/university professors
    --support faculty development like the July Open Institute
    --perhaps create a teacher exchange program where faculty visited each other's classrooms for the day

  2. Create a large effort to communicate better information about the Accuplacer Test.

  3. Partnerships between families/communities and schools would help build a more supportive culture behind students.

  4. Incorporate more writing based on non-fiction texts that calls on students to analyze and sythesize readings inside their own writing; move beyond narrative writing and not focus so much on literature at the expense of rhetorical writing
    --writing in high school needs to align itself more with the kind of writing being asked for in college and on placement or aptitute tests; TAKS emphasis on narrative writing exclusively hurts college readiness

  5. The AVID program must be supported and helped to thrive
    --perhaps a better publicized and supported effort could be made to get students in these programs, support teachers in gaining faculty development, and support offered to college students to serve as tutors

  6. State efforts at addressing College Readiness and alignment between high school and college would be wise to follow the California Early Assessment Program. We saw the value of having a non-fiction based senior English class (as advocated in the Cal State method).

  7. Student readiness in the areas of study skills, the ability to learn, and homework habits are important and need to be promoted more. High school students need to learn to learn.

  8. We also need our regular students to read more non-fiction analytically and use those readings for inquiry-based writing.

  9. We also saw the need to have our students write more (and for us as teachers to find creative ways not to become overwhelmed with papers to grade). Lots of writing and experience in critical thinking and critical reading needed.

  10. It is import also for high school students to learn how to be flexible in adapting their skills and strategies to a new situation.

  11. We saw that in high school we are doing a good job of teaching narrative writing (in large part because of mandated testing), and that we can use narrative as a bridge toward more analytical writing.

  12. Greater efforts to communicate information about college and going to college would help students.

 Site created by L. Lennie Irvin, July 2008 | Page last updated on September 20, 2009 | Sponsored by the San Antonio Writing Project