NWPM AWC--Assessment is a pause for growth and development.

research brief
Tuesday, Session 3: 1:00 - 2:30

Facilitated by:

What we noticed on our first view of the AWC:
  • 6 Traits with different labels (stance- vs- voice)
  • Apply only to analytic writing?
  • The language around each attribute
  • Relationships among language choices

Brief Overview of the National Writing Project's Analytic Writing Continuum (AWC): The AWC was developed by the Research and Evaluation Dept. of the NWP as one part of a whole assessment system (rubric, training papers, anchor papers, and student work). The roots are in the 6+1 Traits Writing Model but since 2009 the AWC is copyrighted by the NWP as the many revisions have made it it's own entity. The NWP still gives credit to 6+1 Traits for providing a starting point upon which to grow. The NWP also developed the NWP Holistic Scoring Guide which follows the AWC language.

Modifications Made:
  • The scale of the rubric was extended from four to six points
  • Language defining the attributes (traits) is less ambiguous
  • Focus is only on the writing, not the writer or reader
  • Descriptive bullets for each attribute are threaded across score points
  • Qualifying language defines what is there, not what is not there.
  • Named a continuum not rubric as it is ongoing, i.e. there is a range in each of the score points

Why Provide Training in the AWC?
  • Only TCs trained in the AWC can use it, "No words on paper are good enough on their own." Paul L.
  • May be a cornerstone for teacher action research projects BSWP Action Research
  • Allow for local site scoring conference and possible anchor paper selection
  • TCs trained may be invited to an NWP Scoring Conference (at least two in 2011 planned)
  • Ask a teacher to read a student's paper and they can usually tell you if it's well-written but can they explain why?

Upper Peninsula WP and Boise State WP Training:
  • All training must be conducted after approval by and with the guidance of the NWP office.
  • Three-days, with a prior hour or two kick-off worked well for us. I would not suggest any less than three full days.
  • Agenda used at 2010 UPWP Training

How Can You Use AWC?
  • Conflicted about switching from 6 Traits. Is it ok to switch only in one classroom?
  • Removal of negative language
  • Age appropriate-- What does it mean?-- In context