Summary of Week 8 reading

According to Sharon Myer, there exists some dilemma for the writing tutor in face of their ESL tutees as ESL writers often request for sentence-level intervention, which violates the integrity of the work’s authorship. Myer argues that tutors cannot expect ESL tutees to learn writing in the same way as native speakers. In fact, those sentence level errors that ESL writers make have deeper level meanings that we don’t often recognize. One important aspects of writing that can exist at the sentence-level is the syntax, which is crucial for students to become better reader and writers. Thus it is important that writing tutors recognizes the different tutoring styles needed by ESL writers and continuously help them with such types of errors. However, she has stated that such directive approach has to be long term and the effects of the approach are not evident right away. It often takes “years, not months” to see the improvements of the writers. Myer also recognizes the view of other writing center scholars who viewed such directive approach in tutoring as unethical. She argues such idea by  stating that for ESL writers, they learn the language by communicating or trying to communicate, which is exactly what the direct tutoring approaches are doing to the ESL writers.

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