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Walsh SoTL Grant 2013-14: Linda Leon

Linda Leon, Finance and Computer Information Systems

Assessing the Effectiveness of a Genre-Process Pedagogy for Improving Business Student Writing

Last year, the CBA undergraduate program assessment revealed that a large proportion of business students are not developing the critical thinking and written communication skills necessary to address more complex business problems. The result may be partly due to business faculty assigning student writing that applies a product-focused pedagogy instead of a genre-process pedagogy. Most business faculty assume that students know how to write effectively for their business audience and thus focus their instruction on transferring the discipline knowledge necessary to help analyze the problem. This may help explain why the student's final output is often simplistic, not developed into a coherent analysis and/or written in a genre that is inappropriate for the intended audience.

The research question being addressed in this project is: will teaching with the genre writing instruction process proposed in this grant project improve student performance in the associated business core course for two CBA undergraduate program learning outcomes, 1) students will effectively communicate on business topics in written form, and 2) students will demonstrate critical thinking skills by defining, modeling, analyzing and evaluating a complex business problem.