The Activity of “Writing for Learning” in a Nursing Program.
This article explores the activity of writing in higher education as a mediational means for student meaning making. From a dialogic perspective, writing is not about learning and applying formulas and making fixed kinds of texts, but about ways of working and ways of acting that brings writers, readers, resources and contexts into trajectories. The argument is that processes of writing enhance student meaning making and that these processes are formed by complex interaction. Contextual interpretation and use of mediational means is constituted in social systems of activities that depend on and promote particular kinds of texts. We need insights in contextual trajectories to understand the relationship between writing and student meaning making. Empirically, I draw on a study investigating portfolio writing as a pedagogical tool in a nursing program in Norway. The rationale of the study was an identified need for information about how processes of writing develop, how texts come into being and how institutional tasks of writing are being unpacked. The aim of the paper is to explore a dialogical approach to the activity of writing and to discuss possible methodological implications from the theoretical framework. The empirical study is used as an illustration
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