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The Effects of College Composition on the Writing Behavior of Students

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Freshmen students of equal ability were paired. One member of each pair enrolled in freshman English. In a test three months after completion of the course both members of each pair were asked to write a theme and evaluate some errors in sentence structure. The group not having had freshman English made fewer errors on the test than those who had completed the course. In a statistical analysis of the data the difference was not significant at normally accepted probability levels. A somewhat similar study with similar results was carried out with students in a technical writing course. An extensive review of the literature was made. The results reported by other investigators were very similar to the results of this study. It was concluded that college composition courses do not improve the writing behavior of students.

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Education, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:14 ,  Issue: 1 )