Teacher Consultant Amy Krajeck Attends
In 2016 NWP awarded NWP-KSU a Seed Grant to host an Advanced Institute to scale up the C3WP (College, Career, and Community Writers Program). In summer 2017, TCs led by Tammy Anfang and Jennifer Baker participated in a 3-day launch workshop to learn how to implement four cycles of argumentative writing in their classrooms throughout the year.
Participants gathered three more times in October, December, and January for continued PD on argumentative writing and to formatively assess student writing samples with the C3WP Using Sources Tool (UST), which provided a focused look at the quality of students’ claims and how they selected and used evidence from sources.
Scoring Conference Redesigned
In May of last year, NWP began recruiting past C3WP participants to score at its National Scoring Conference, which was to be held in St. Louis, Missouri, in July 2020. NWP-KSU Co-Director Kate Walley asked if anyone from the cohort was interested in scoring. Amy Krajeck took her up on the offer.
The goal of the conference was to score about 8,500 argumentative papers from elementary, middle, and high school. However, when Covid-19 led to the closure of schools across the country, it was impossible to collect the final round of data.
In May, NWP went to work with its research partner SRI International to redesign the original plan. They decided to use the data collected in the first year of the 2-year study and host an entirely online scoring conference via Zoom on the original dates. As a result, the National Writing Project (NWP) of the University of California, Berkeley 2020 College, Career, and Community Writers Program (C3WP) Online National Scoring Conference successfully examined middle and high school student argumentative writing, learned about source-based argument, and applied NWP’s Analytic Writing Continuum (AWC) for Source-Based Argument to the writing.
4,500 Written Pieces
NWP sent participants the text sets, the 2020 revised AWC, and anchor papers and commentary via FedEx and video-training links via email in June. The advanced preparation training took approximately 10 hours and could be completed at the scorers’ convenience the week prior to the conference, which commenced with a virtual happy hour on July 21.
The conference took place over a four-day period and each scorer contributed more than 30 hours of work during that time. The first day was spent preparing to evaluate the quality of student argumentative writing where scorers certified to a criterion level of performance in the application of the AWC.
Nearly 4,500 pieces of writing were assessed, with an overall reliability rate of .88. The scoring event was the largest NWP has ever hosted and they did it online!
An Incredible Opportunity
Krajeck said the opportunity, like all NWP trainings and workshops, was incredible. She walked away with six new text sets to use with her students and a deeper understanding of how to better evaluate argumentative writing.
“Being a part of the KSU-C3WP cohort transformed the way I approach teaching argumentative writing,” she said. “Being a part of the NWP C3WP Scoring Conference and introduction to the AWC will help me to more effectively formatively assess my own students’ writing to better guide future instruction."
Krajeck said one of the most interesting obstacles the online conference presented was having to schedule orientations and trainings around five time zones, as scorers came from as far west as Hawaii.
“Those in Hawaii had to jump on the call at 5 a.m. I was a bit luckier and didn’t have to log in until 11 a.m. Of course, it all evened out at the end of the day. Once scoring began, we were all able to work from 8-4 as we were placed in ‘tables’ with other scorers in our respective time zones,” Krajeck said. “I hadn’t really thought about all of the little details that would need to be considered when moving from one physical location to nearly 150 homes or empty summer classrooms throughout the country. Thankfully, the folks at the NWP did think of it all. They did a fantastic job redesigning such a large endeavor.”