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Social Sciences

Grammar for Writing - Shaping Policy and Practice

1 September 2011 - 31 August 2012

PI/s in Exeter: Professor Debra Myhill

Research partners:

Funding awarded: £ 77,339

Sponsor(s): ESRC

Project webpage(s)

Grammar for Writing - Shaping Policy and Practice

About the research

This study built on the findings of the Grammar for Writing? Project, which found that an embedded approach to the teaching of grammar within the context of writing had a statistically significant beneficial effect  on students writing attainment, but also found that teachers’ own grammmatical and metalinguistic subject knowledge mediated the beneficial impact.  Shaping Policy and Practice set out to explore and develop these findings with professionals and policymakers.

The project had three key aims:

Firstly, the project sought to bridge the research-practice interface by working collaboratively with a small number of English departments, using the successful intervention pedagogy, and supporting teachers in using it to address their own learners’ needs. This addressed the question: What are the main themes, issues and concerns in professionals' discussion of the role that this research suggests grammar can play in a pedagogy of writing?

Secondly, the project sought for broader national impact through the holding of a National Stakeholders Conference, bringing together practitioners, researchers, advisors, teacher educators, inspectors and policymakers to engage in critical discussion about the policy and practice implications of our research. This addressed the question: What are the opportunities and barriers to engaging professionals and policymakers in the policy implications of this research?

Thirdly, the project team sought to develop support materials for teachers through a set of commercial teaching resources, drawing on the successful pedagogy of the intervention, and informed by the outcomes of the collaborative work with schools, to generate maximum access for English teachers.