Time required: Short

Grading: Not required 

Disciplines: any 

Why: For students to write effectively, they need to see what the goal is. 


  • Provide students with several examples of effective writing in the desired genre.  This can be work from previous semesters or professional publications.  
    • Multiple models are important because there are many ways to write about the same thing and because it reduces unthinking imitation.
  • Ask students to describe why each piece of writing is effective in writing. 
    • Invite comparisons among the models.  
  • Use small groups or discussion boards to discuss.


  • Include less effective writing to compare
  • After the discussion, ask students to reflect on one of their own pieces of writing – either privately or in groups.  

Adapted from The Elements of Teaching Writing by Katherine Gottschalk and Keith Hjortshoj, pp. 83-84.

For more tips visit Writing Resources for LCC Faculty