Thoughts on "Response to Writing."
"problems that many beginning writers have difficulty articulating" perhaps it is difficult for students to articulate these problems because, by suggesting corrections, the teacher is projecting their own voice onto the student?
"receive feedback on only final drafts" that's something I hadn't thought of before. I feel I've always been made to turn in multiple drafts of a paper; at least one rough draft before the final...how often do teachers collect final (even though they really aren't final at all) papers without having given any previous help?
"open-ended questions on content, the college student..." this is a problem; we shouldn't be waiting until college to utilize this kind of feedback. It may make a certain kind of sense (I guess) to refrain from in-depth responses when children are younger, because (supposedly) they don't have all the skills yet. But by withholding those questions, we stunt the student's growth. There is no reason why we can't comment of the technical stuff and the contextual stuff. The best way to teach a child is through scaffolding, and this falls under scaffolding for sure. How can we possibly expect them to get better when we never meaningfully challenge them.
"self-assess their drafts" this is a good thing, and I agree with this. By self-assessing, the teacher is taken out of the picture and the student is left with only their own voice. And I think this is as easy (and possibly as complicated) as writing those open-ended questions and seeing how the student interprets and uses them.
"specific guidance" this sounds like a very nice way of saying they were told what to do. And this irritates me. They didn't get better because they learned, they got better because you made them do what you wanted them to do. The worst part is a teacher may think they're being helpful by doing this, when really they might even be making things worse. If a student begins to rely on "specific guidance" they'll only end up even less capable than they were before. Instead of being kind of confused, they will be utterly lost.
My overall impression of this piece is that it's n basically everything we've already mentioned before and also some of the information seems a obvious. Of course students prefer feedback that explains why something is good or bad. And it seems natural to me that self-editing would be more educational than just taking revision orders from a teacher.