Abstrack writing and Report writing

Abstrack writing and Report writing

The Process of Writing

The writing process is the series of actions required to produce a coherent written text. It is a key term in the teaching of writing.

Approaches to the process

Cognitive process theory of writing (Flower–Hayes model) See also: Cognitive and linguistic theories of composition Overview of cognitive model

Flower and Hayes extend Bitzer’s rhetorical situation to become a series of rhetorical problems, i.e., when a writer must represent the situation as a problem to be solved, such as the invocation of a particular audience to an oversimplified approach such as finding a theme and completing the writing in two pages by Monday’s class.[3]

In “The Cognition of Discovery” Flower and Hayes set out to discover the differences between good and bad writers. They came to three results from their study, which suggests that good writers envelop the three following characteristics when solving their rhetorical problems:

Good writers respond to all of the rhetorical problems

Good writers build their problem representation by creating a particularly rich network of goals for affecting a reader; and

Good writers represent the problem not only in more breadth, but in depth.[4] Flower and Hayes suggest that composition instructors need to consider showing students how “to explore and define their own problems, even within the constraints of an assignment”.[4] They believe that “Writers discover what they want to do by insistently, energetically exploring the entire problem before them and building for themselves a unique image of the problem they want to solve.”

Criticism of cognitive model

Patricia Bizzell argues that even though educators may have an understanding of “how” the writing process occurs, educators shouldn’t assume that this knowledge can answer the question “about ‘why’ the writer makes certain choices in certain situations”, since writing is always situated within a discourse community (484[full citation needed]). She discusses how the Flower and Hayes model relies on what is called the process of “translating ideas into visible language” (486[full citation needed]). This process occurs when students “treat written English as a set of containers into which we pour meaning” (486[full citation needed]). Bizzell contends that this process “remains the emptiest box” in the cognitive process model, since it de-contextualizes the original context of the written text, negating the original. She argues that “Writing does not so much contribute to thinking as provide an occasion for thinking…”

Social model of writing process

“The aim of collaborative learning helps students to find more control in their learning situation. [5]

Even grammar has a social turn in writing: “It may be that to fully account for the contempt that some errors of usage arouse, we will have to understand better than we do the relationship between language, order, and those deep psychic forces that perceived linguistic violations seem to arouse in otherwise amiable people”.[6] So one can’t simply say a thing is right or wrong. There is a difference of degrees attributed by social forces.

Expressivist process theory of writing

According to the expressivist theory, the process of writing is centered on the writer’s transformation. This involves the writer changing in the sense that voice and identity are established and the writer has a sense of his or her self. This theory became popular in the late 1960s and early 1970s. According to Richard Fulkerson’s article “Four Philosophies of Composition”, the focus of expressivism is for writers to have “… an

interesting, credible, honest, and personal voice”. Moreover, proponents of the expressivist process view this theory as a way for students to become fulfilled and healthy both emotionally and mentally. Those who teach this process often focus on journaling and other classroom activities to focus on student self-discovery and at times, low-stakes writing. Prominent figures in the field include John Dixon, Ken Macrorie, Lou Kelly, Donald C. Stewart and Peter Elbow.

Historical approaches to composition and process

An historical response to process is concerned primarily with the manner in which writing has been shaped and governed by historical and social forces. These   forces are dynamic and contextual, and therefore render any static iteration of process unlikely.

Notable scholars that have conducted this type of inquiry include media theorists such as Marshall McLuhan, Walter Ong, Gregory Ulmer, and Cynthia Selfe. Much of McLuhan’s work, for example, centered around the impact of written language on oral cultures, degrees to which various media are accessible and interactive, and the ways in which electronic media determine communication patterns. His evaluation of technology as a shaper of human societies and psyches indicates a strong connection between historical forces and literacy practices.

Autistic autobiographies

As appealing as document sharing may be for students with autism in particular,[8] being able to contextualize one’s life story in the context of their disability may prove the most powerful expression of the writing process overall. Rose illustrates [8] that creating narrative identity in a conventional sense is quite difficult for autistic students because of their challenges with interpersonal communication. The narratives of autistic students can sometimes be troubling to neurotypical peers with whom they share their work, as Rose notes in quoting autistic autobiographer Dawn Price-Hughes, “Sometimes reaching out and communicating isn‘t easy–it can bring sadness and regret. Some of my family and friends, after reading the manuscript for this book, were deeply saddened to learn how I experienced my world.”

Rose points to the well-known work of Temple Grandin and Donna Williams as examples of autistic autobiographies and analogizes toward the usefulness of women’s autobiographies championed by Susan Stanford Friedman to show women’s inter-connectivity, suggesting the same can be learned through autistic autobiographies. She writes that such works can minimize the “pathologisation of difference” which can easily occur between autistic students and neuroytpical peers can be broken down by such autobiographies. As Rose directly says, “I argue

here that awareness of the relationality of autistic life writing, and the recognition of its corollary status as testimonio and attention to the material relations of the production of these texts is particularly useful in assessing their social significance.”

From a rhetorical perspective the use for students with disabilities (not just autistic students) seems to be promising. It would appear to foster a sense of a community among students with disabilities and helping these voices be brought in from the margins similarly to the way Mike Rose refers to students from disadvantaged backgrounds and their needs in Lives on the Boundary.

Structure

An academic abstract typically outlines four elements relevant to the completed work:

The research focus (i.e. statement of the problem(s)/research issue(s) addressed); The research methods used (experimental research, case studies, questionnaires, etc.);

The results/findings of the research; and The main conclusions and recommendations

It may also contain brief references,[6] although some publications’ standard style omits references from the abstract, reserving them for the article body (which, by definition, treats the same topics but in more depth).

Abstract length varies by discipline and publisher requirements. Typical length ranges from 100 to 500 words, but very rarely more than a page and occasionally just a few words.[7] An abstract may or may not have the section title                   of “abstract” explicitly listed as an antecedent to content. Abstracts are typically sectioned logically as an overview of what appears in the paper, with any of the following subheadings: Background, Introduction, Objectives, Methods, Results, Conclusions.[citation needed] Abstracts in which these subheadings are explicitly given are often called structured abstracts by publishers. In articles that follow the IMRAD pattern (especially original research, but sometimes other article types), structured abstract style is the norm.[citation needed] (The “A” of abstract may be added to “IMRAD” yielding “AIMRAD”.) Abstracts that comprise one paragraph      (no    explicit              subheadings)                      are    often       called                 unstructured abstracts by publishers. They are often appropriate for review articles that don’t follow the IMRAD pattern within their bodies.[citation needed] Example

Example taken from the Journal of Biology, Volume 3, Issue 2.:[8]

The hydrodynamics of dolphin drafting by Daniel Weihs, Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, Technion, Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa 32000, Israel.

Abstract:

Background Drafting in cetaceans is defined as the transfer of forces between individuals without actual physical contact between them. This behavior has long been surmised to explain how young dolphin calves keep up with their rapidly moving mothers. It has recently been observed that a significant number of calves become permanently separated from their mothers during chases by tuna vessels. A study of the hydrodynamics of drafting, initiated inmechanisms causing the separation of mothers and calves during fishing-related activities, is reported here.

Results Quantitative results are shown for the forces and moments around a pair of unequally sized dolphin-like slender bodies. These include two major effects. First, the so-called Bernoulli suction, which stems from the fact that the local pressure drops in areas of high speed, results in an attractive force between mother and calf. Second is the displacement effect, in which the motion of the mother causes the water in front to move forwards and radially outwards, and water behind the body to move forwards to replace the animal’s mass. Thus, the calf can gain a ‘free ride’ in the forward-moving areas. Utilizing these effects, the neonate can gain up to 90% of the thrust needed to move alongside the mother at speeds of up to 2.4 m/s. A comparison with observations of eastern spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) is presented, showing savings of up to 60% in the thrust that calves require if they are to keep up with their mothers.

Conclusions A theoretical analysis, backed by observations of free- swimming dolphin schools, indicates that hydrodynamic interactions with mothers play an important role in enabling dolphin calves to keep up with rapidly moving adult school members.

Report Writing

How to write a report

Report writing is an essential skill in many disciplines. You should develop effective report writing skills at university because it‘s highly likely you‘ll be writing reports in the workplace.

A report is formal written document used to provide concise information on a specific subject. It can be used to communicate the results of an experiment, inform on the progress of a project or to make

recommendations.

An effective report is an accurate presentation of information. It should be objective, concise and structured to guide the reader through the main points.

The sections contained in a report will depend on the report type and specific task requirements. It‘s your responsibility to find out what to include in your report. A basic report could include the following sections:

1.  Preliminary parts

Title page and AcknowledgementsThe Title page should include the title of the report, who it was commissioned by (or for the purposes of university – your lecturer, course code, and student number) and the date.

Executive Summary or AbstractThe Abstract (or Executive Summary) provides a summary of the main points of the report. It briefly covers the aims, objectives, research methods, and the findings of the report. It also identifies what action is required. Although the Abstract is located at the beginning of the report, it is usually written last as it is a summary of the whole report.

Table of ContentsThe Table of Contents shows the structure of the report.

2.  Body of the report

Introduction Capture the reader‘s attention! State the aims and objectives of the report, the problem or situation that prompted the report and identify what the report intends to achieve. You should also include definitions, research methods and background history (if relevant).

Methodology The Methodology explains what you did and how you did it. It could be the materials used in an experiment, the subjects involved in a survey, or the steps you took in a project.

Results or Findings This is where you present the findings from your experiment, survey, or research project.

DiscussionThis is where the facts or evidence are presented and discussed. Conclusions Provide implications from the content of the report.

Recommendations Describe a clear course of action. The recommendations should demonstrate your professional competence in a specific situation and be clearly aligned with your conclusions.

3.  Supplementary parts

References This is where you acknowledge all the sources used in the report. For further information, see the Referencing module.

Appendices The Appendices contains additional graphical, statistical or other supplementary material. Each item should be clearly labelled (e.g. Appendix 1) and referred to in the report.

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