The Poor State of Learning to Write In the USA

In the quest to tackle America’s deteriorating status as a science and mathematics hub, the government and other relevant agencies are working full throttle to promote the sciences in schools, colleges and universities. This includes the deployment of resources to facilitate this plan. There is, however, another concern. While the pursuit of excellence in the sciences is by any means a worthy cause, just how much it can achieve for the American economy and the academic world when writing skills of Americans are on the death bed is a matter of concern. Writing education is the cornerstone of studying just about every other subject. As such, to succeed in the sciences as espoused by the government, it is critical that American learners are also exposed to writing education. Considering the poor state of writing education in the US, there is the need to make urgent interventions to make a full integration of writing education at various levels of education, regardless of the subjects being pursued.
Assessments that have been carried on American students to gauge their levels of writing skills have returned damning verdicts. It is evident that writing education has systemically been neglected over time. Most students are extremely inefficient in regard to writing and the frequency with which they engage in writing is extremely low. The essence of writing skills can by no means be underrated. The ability to use the written form of communication is such an important skill as it is the means of interaction between the teacher and the learner as well as carrying out assessments. This holds irrespective of the subject of study. It is the reason why any learner with deficient writing skills will have serious trouble succeeding in the academic world.
A study by National Center for Education Statistics to evaluate writing skills of learners nationally indicated that a whopping 20% of 8 and 12 graders have a below basic performance in writing skills. This is a troubling scenario that should be causing the stakeholders in the field sleepless nights. Notably, this deficiency of writing skills is often linked to a substantial number of schools dropping out cases. Furthermore, the inefficiencies will be propagated into the high schools, colleges, and universities where similar trends have also been observed. Deficiencies in writing skills take various forms including the sheer inability to compose ideas coherently into sentences or even challenges with making grammatically correct sentences. Similar sentiments have been reported by various studies by various groups. One such study by Cole et al., also showed a pronounced deficiency of writing skills amongst entry level Public Relations practitioners. This is indicative of the general national trends. It essentially shows that the education system is minting graduates who are poorly prepared to take up jobs that may entail occasional writing tasks.
The ramifications of this scenario that is currently existing are that these graduates will have trouble landing jobs. When and if they manage to get placements, the employers will need to retrain them on writing skills which are an expense any employer would rather avoid. Moreover, the efficiency and the productivity of such employees who have undergone poor quality writing education will be compromised. This is because their inability to communicate in writing means they will not be well positioned to achieve their maximum potential especially considering just how critical communication is in any organizational setting. This means that, as much as scientists are an integral ingredient to enhance America’s global competitiveness in the technological arena, having myriads of scientists and engineers who cannot write reports or pass on instructions translates into a wanting project. Proficiency in writing is a major determinant that influences career success.
Nevertheless, the gloomy picture can be rescued by such programs as the one being initiated by a collaboration of Commission on Public Relations Education (CPRE), the College Board and the International Association of Business Communicators. The three entities have come together with the noble agenda to invigorate learning of writing skills in the nation. The initiative seeks to turn learners into accomplished writers who can participate actively in todays and the future world. The National Writing Project, as it has been named, is targeted not only on the learners but also on empowering the teachers and other educators with expertise and skills in order to achieve sustainable writing educations in the learning institutions. By playing such a constructive role in creating an enabling environment for learners to study and hone writing skills, the establishments would be taking up a crucial and complementary task in the quest to make America’s education system responsive to the needs of the industries. These efforts notwithstanding, the gaping gap in terms of writing skills still requires other corporate establishments to chip in through similar programs to promote writing skills among learning institutions, educators, and learners. Similarly, the government needs to incorporate writing skills in its education agenda just as it has taken up the matter of sciences which are seen as critical to continued economic success; noting that writing education will also complement the efforts.

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The Poor State of Learning to Write In the USA. (2022, Feb 27). Retrieved from

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