Analytical Techniques for Developing Argumentative Writing in STEM
This article demonstrates how experiential learning could be used to develop argumentative essay writing skills in STEM students. Written feedback, when delivered in a timely manner, is an effective way of advancing students’ understanding of the writing process. Unfortunately, large class sizes and the limited backgrounds of instructors do not always make formative feedback possible. STEM students are especially disadvantaged since approaches to teaching written communication tend to differ from the trial-and-error strategies compatible with many STEM areas. An experiential learning approach to writing instruction can have a positive impact on developing writing skills in STEM learners. Implementing algorithms for providing STEM students with immediate, dependable, formative feedback is expected to improve their performance in writing. This paper discusses an experiential learning project for teaching argumentative writing was delivered to computer science and engineering freshmen. Also discussed are automated analysis of content and argumentation in the essays, using NLP methods.