Observing children writing on screen: Exploring the process of multi-modal composition

Cathy Burnett, Julia Myers

Abstract


This article reports on small-scale studies from the United Kingdom which investigated the processes engaged in by children as they composed texts on screen using e-mail, PowerPoint and Word. The findings highlight these children’s attention to visual features and the iterative way in which they engaged with different aspects of the writing process. Considerable creativity was evident in their writing, particularly in their use of multiple modes and the interplay between use of ready-made resources and the development of ideas for composition. Implications of these findings for the teaching and assessment of writing and further research are considered.

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