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Nancy Sommers and Laura Saltz. The Novice as Expert: Writing the Freshman Year.

Sommers, Nancy, and Laura Saltz. "The Novice as Expert: Writing the Freshman Year." CCC 56.1 (2004): 124-149.


Why do some students prosper as college writers, moving forward with their writing, while others lose interest? In this essay we explore some of the paradoxes of writing development by focusing on the central role the freshman year plays in this development. We argue that students who make the greatest gains as writers throughout college (1) initially accept their status as novices and (2) see in writing a larger purpose than fulfilling an assignment. Based on the evidence of our longitudinal study, we conclude that the story of the freshman year is not one of dramatic changes on paper; it is the story of changes within the writers themselves.

Works Cited
Bartholomae, David. "Inventing the University." When a Writer Can't Write: Studies in Writer's Block and Other Composing Problems. Ed. Mike Rose. New York: Guilford, 1985.
Carroll, Lee Ann. Rehearsing New Roles: How College Students Develop as Writers. Carbondale: SIUP, 2002.
Herrington, Anne J., and Marcia Curtis. Persons in Process: Four Stories of Writing and Personal Development in College. Urbana: NCTE, 2000.
Light, Richard J. Making the Most of College: Students Speak Their Minds. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 2001.
Sternglass, Marilyn S. Time to Know Them: A Longitudinal Study of Writing and Learning at the College Level. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum, 1997.
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