In June, 2015, I attended the conference of the European Association of Teachers of Academic Writing (EATAW), which this year took place in Tallinn, Estonia. The conference, organized by the Tallinn University of Technology, was themed "Academic Writing in Multiple Scholarly, Socio-Cultural, Instructional and Disciplinary Contexts: Challenges and Perspectives.
I was part of a panel focusing on the potential and problems associated with the use of generic rubrics to evaluate writing. Here's a description of my presentation:
Chris Anson will orient the panel by asking an overarching question: can generic rubrics effectively serve the purpose of assessing writing across contexts? To answer this question, he will consider the application of criteria across contexts based on how bounded the contexts are, how closely aligned their learning goals are, and how synchronously their disparate instructors align their courses within the curriculum. Community rubrics may work most effectively within highly bounded, goal-based, synchronous curricula, while more particularized rubrics may be required across contexts that do not share these features, as documented in his and his colleagues’ work studying writing and speaking genres in different disciplines. The presentation will result in a theoretical framework for considering the development and use of common community rubrics.
It was great to explore the medieval old town of Tallinn, and to enjoy the conference dinner, which took place in a castle on the outskirts of town.