Sommers, Nancy. "Responding to Student Writing." Background Readings for Instructors Using the Bedford Handbook Sixth Edition. Ed. Glen Blalock. Boston: Bedford, 2002. 124-130. Print.

This is a seminal article. Nancy Sommers wrote this article in 1984 but many of the ideas she expounds are still relevant and useful. This article discusses the effects of responses to student's writings. Sommers explains how appropriated, vague, generalized responses can leave students more confounded about their writing. For instance, a student will turn in a paper for peer review; this paper will contain a purpose and idea but the tutor or teacher must be careful not to overwhelm the student into thinking the teacher or tutor's appropriation is more important than the student's initial purpose and idea. Another interesting idea in this essay is how teachers and tutors are allowed to use vague and general comments about a student's paper and then ask the student to be more specific about their ideas and topics. Sommers tells readers to assess a student's paper the way they would analyze a piece of literature by looking at ideas, themes, and content. While this article tends to serve as an address to teachers, the essay can be used as a resource for anyone in a position of interaction with a student's writing.


North, Stephen. "The Idea of a Writing Center." Background Readings for Instructors Using the Bedford Handbook Sixth Edition. Ed. Glen Blalock. Boston: Bedford, 2002. 186-198. Print.

This is another seminal article. This resource will serve as a foundation to the whole idea of a writing center and the never-ending changes writing centers incur. Stephen North displays the interaction, expectations, & dynamics between faculty & writing centers. Whether working in the writing center or not, if you are employed in an English academic community with a writing center that facilitates students with their writings, this is a good article to read. North explains the dilemma that exists between faculty's expectations of writing centers & the perception & pedagogical purposes by the writing centers. North uses this dynamic to advance the writing center's idea and purpose. He portrays writng centers as more than the fix-it shops they are perceived to be. Essentially, North presents a good defense by explaining the purpose and idea of a writing center is not to facilitate a student to write a better paper but facilitate a student to be a better writer.