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Developing Motivation to Write

by Roger Bruning, Christy Horn
Educational Psychologist ()


Two decades of cognitive research have shown writing to be a highly fluid process of problem solving requiring constant monitoring of progress toward task goals. Becoming an able writer brings great intellectual and social rewards, but the extended nature and difficulty of this process create unique motivational challenges. Speech development provides some models for development of writing motivation, but writing requires special attention to motivational conditions. Four clusters of conditions are proposed as keys to developing motivation: nurturing functional beliefs about writing, fostering engagement using authentic writing tasks, providing a supportive context for writing, and creating a positive emotional environment. Teachers’ own conceptions of writing are seen as crucial to establishing these conditions in most writing contexts. Systematic motivational research complementing our knowledge about the cognitive processes of writing is needed to understand the development of motivation to write. BRUNING AND HORN Random

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