The ‘Wicked’ problem of developing critical understanding in Creative Writing students.

Philippa Holloway

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Abstract

The subject benchmarks statements published in 2016 state that ‘Creative Writing (CW) is a diverse and still developing subject […] underpinned by a growing body of research and pedagogical thinking.’ (QAA, 2016) and as such writers who teach, and teachers who write, are actively engaging in reflective practice to try and bridge the gap between what has previously been viewed as a solitary and perhaps ‘mysterious’ practice (Waitman and Plucker, 2009), and what is now demanded in terms of theoretical and critical knowledge of that practice by students. As a writer and teacher of writing, I have become aware of similarities between Problem Based Learning (PBL) and the praxis approach I use. Seeking out literature on this connection however, has revealed that while many other disciplines (English/History/Sociology) are using CW as a PBL tool, it is little discussed within the subject itself. This study is the first tentative stage in a wider consideration of whether openly exploring creative writing acts and actions as a series of problem solving exercises can help students further understand their own creative practice, and develop not only their creative work but their ability to reflect and analyse their practice through academic research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
JournalNew Writing The International Journal for the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing
Early online date10 Apr 2018
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10 Apr 2018

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Keywords

  • Pedagogy
  • Problem based learning
  • Reflective practice
  • Praxis.

Cite this

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abstract = "The subject benchmarks statements published in 2016 state that ‘Creative Writing (CW) is a diverse and still developing subject […] underpinned by a growing body of research and pedagogical thinking.’ (QAA, 2016) and as such writers who teach, and teachers who write, are actively engaging in reflective practice to try and bridge the gap between what has previously been viewed as a solitary and perhaps ‘mysterious’ practice (Waitman and Plucker, 2009), and what is now demanded in terms of theoretical and critical knowledge of that practice by students. As a writer and teacher of writing, I have become aware of similarities between Problem Based Learning (PBL) and the praxis approach I use. Seeking out literature on this connection however, has revealed that while many other disciplines (English/History/Sociology) are using CW as a PBL tool, it is little discussed within the subject itself. This study is the first tentative stage in a wider consideration of whether openly exploring creative writing acts and actions as a series of problem solving exercises can help students further understand their own creative practice, and develop not only their creative work but their ability to reflect and analyse their practice through academic research.",
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