Authors

Laurel Oates

Document Type

Article

Abstract

In this article, Professor Oates examines the belief that writing facilitates learning from several perspectives. Part I describes the writing-to-learn movement, beginning with James N. Britton's and Janet Emig's assertions that writing is a unique method of learning and ending with John M. Ackerman's claim that writing is no better and, is sometimes worse, than other modes of learning. Building on the evidence described in Part I, Part II discusses writing to learn in light of four theories: behaviorism, Linda S. Flower and John Hayes's models of the composing process, Carl Bereiter and Marlene Scardamalia's models of knowledge telling and knowledge transforming, and cognitive psychology. The final part, Part III, suggests which types of writing are likely to foster law school learning and how they can be used to facilitate the construction of new knowledge and the development of legal expertise.