Below are some proposed activities and resources for using Writer Response Technologies in the composition classroom. Compiled by Mark Marino 2006. (See also, Christy’s list of Games and Pedagogy resources.)

See further discussion of computers in composition here.

Exercises: (See developed classroom activities)
Number 1:

  • GREP Editing
  • Grammar Chucker
  • SpellCheck-mate
  • Shift-F7 Vocab
  • Track Tricks
  • Version Verbage

Technologies and Tools:
First, there are tools. In addition to word processing software, other programs, both free and for-pay. If anyone has had success implementing the following, chime in: 

  1. Node Maps and Semantic Webs?(Prewriting)
  2. PowerPoint (prewriting)
  3. automated Thesis Builder (Sheridan-Baker-ish)
  4. Course Management Software (Blackboard, Chalk, Wire, Moodle, XOOPS, ATutor)?
  5. Wikis (Class collaborations)– Zulupad and Vodoopad allow students to use on wikis independently. Free wikis here.
  6. Realtime Collaborative Writing Ware (SubEthaEdit).
  7. Hypertext/Hypermedia Writing Systems (Sophie, Tinderbox, DEVONthink)
  8. Blogs (Online Discussions)
  9. Online Bibliography Service (EasyBib, NoodleBib) or pay Bibs, such as HyperFolio or Endnote.
  10. Other Social Software (Myspace, Friendster for research or Creative Nonfiction)
  11. Online Survey Software (SurveyMonkey)
  12. Web dictionaries. Online translaters. Online Encyclopedias


Uses of technology:
Or maybe students need help using the technology they have available to them to work on their process. Here are some brief suggestions:

  • GREP Grammar: Students search for repeated mistakes (such as they’re/there or for semicolons).
  • PowerPoint Prewriting: Students use PowerPoint to create visual brainstorming.
  • TrackbackFeedback: Commenting on manuscripts using “track changes”
  • Discussion Boards: Students hold workshops online
  • Searching Sherpas: Getting info fast.

Send links to other assignments online.

New skills for the Computer Comp student:
Most composition instructors teach some form of of the writing process (Prewriting, Outlining, Drafting, Revising, Proofreading) along with critical reading. But perhaps the composition classroom needs to also address new skills on computers, rather than assuming that students will learn these on their own.

  • How to use the grammar checker
  • How to cite online formats
  • How to write for the web
  • How to write a good post
  • How to collaborate on a Wiki
  • How to collaborate on versioned documents
  • How to write email (in business or academic settings)
  • How to compose for high search-engine ratings

Or could could the students teach us these lessons? Is it ridiculous to try to control these forms?

Particular WRT apps:
Most interesting to WRT contributors and readers would be questions of how to integrate particular WRT technologies into the composition classroom. We have already covered this in posts (noted below), but this may be a good time to develop the list with respect to essay-writing in particular. How could our particular objects of study help students with the process and problems of composition?

  • IF (Verbs and Objects; Description, 2nd Person)
  • Chatbots (characterization, discourse, voice, representation)
  • ARGs (ubiquitous composition?)
  • Facade: Language skills, dialogue development.
  • Eliterature at large (critical reading)

Grammar Resources:

22 Short Films about Grammar: Films created using Lionhead Studios ”Movies” 

Online Discussions:
(at the risk of reproducing our blogroll)
This conversation is happening all over the web, but particularly at the following locations. Let us know of others.
Alliance for Computers and Writing
Chorus: Composition in networked environments (journal)
Computers and Composition online journal (Bowling Green State U)
C&C bibliography
7Cs Computers and Composition conference (blogged by D.G. Jerz)
The Computers and Writing online conference (topics):

The Institute for the Future of the Book
Kairos: online journal exploring the intersections of rhetoric, technology, and pedagogy.
Voice of the Shuttle Technologies of Writing Page
Writing and the Digital Life

thesis writing service