Thursday, August 9, 2012

Role of Sound in Writing

Question: How does speaking help writers to write more effectively?

Answer/Quote: “Although speech and writing constitute different modes of communication and make different demands on a communicator, there is some reason to think that the act of speaking may directly assist the act of writing. Tovatt and Miller (1967) have reported results of an experimental composition program in which each student was taught to ‘test the patterns he writes against his ingrained oral pattern’ (p. 7). Citing Alexander Pope’s line ‘The sound must seem an echo to the sense,’ Tovatt and Miller claimed that reading a passage aloud can help writers examine their work for inept phrasing or lack of clarity. Robert Zoellner (1969) and Terry Radcliffe (1972) have argued that students are often able to say aloud that which they are not able to write. Both writers suggest that speaking aloud to another student can help students discover and clarify ideas they will subsequently write about.” P. 103.

Comment: All these ideas are worthy of being tested in the writing classroom. But they emphasize speaking and not standard English. Useful for generating ideas and, possibly, style. RayS.

Title: “Considerations of Sound in the Composing Process of Published Writers.” CR Cooper and L Odell. Research in the Teaching of English (Fall 1976), 103-115.

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