Philippa and all -- I've been following this discussion from my hiding
place at a conference on instructional technology at Mount Allison.
(Your online discussion is a good competitor!) My concern about
commenting on student work electronically is that we are then dealing
with the paper, not the student--quite counter to our theories about
the nature of literacy and knowledge. As for software, I wish I
did know the kind of program Philippa mentions: idea-generating
systems? My 1995 report on Software for Writing Instruction (available
through the Faculty section of my web page, below) panned all the
drill programs but placed some faint hopes in programs like Daedalus. I
don't feel much more than a faint hope now, having seen and heard of
too many courses where the topics and interactions were shaped around
generic general-knowledge general-reader generalities (yes, that's 4
gens) that suits only the first-year composition model. Cute
occasionally, but not an activity of exploring or creating knowledge.
Are there other types of stories that I haven't heard?
(Dr.) Margaret Procter Room 216, 15 King's College Circle
Coordinator, Writing Support Toronto, Ontario M5S 3H7
University of Toronto (416) 978-8109; FAX (416) 971-2027
www.library.utoronto.ca/www/writing/ [log in to unmask]