Reflecting on Writing Process

Metacognition: Thinking about thinking. 

In my own reading after class, I came upon this great definition of “metacognition” that I felt was worth sharing.

Metacognition is an awareness and understanding of one’s own thought processes. It focuses on how people learn and process information, taking into consideration people’s awareness of how they learn. (Jennifer A. Livingston. “Metacognition: An Overview.” Online paper, State University of New York at Buffalo, Graduate School of Education, 1997. http://gse.buffalo.edu/fas/shuell/cep564/metacog.htm.)

Now let’s talk about how this applies to our writing process & product



What worked out well? What are the strengths of your paper (as a lit review)?


What were your challenges? What would you continue to work on if you had more time to keep revising?




Time away from project lowers interest in it. Staying motivated

Remaining flexible


Writing at unexpected times because it’s a good idea to do


Relevant sources related to topic

Identifying themes early in the process (how to compare without enough)

Writing in a new genre

Getting started, is this right, am I on track, doubt and anxiety????

Getting comfortable with the balance between summary, synthesis, and response

Hacking your writing process

Research process – searching for sources, following keywords, digging into specific journals

Reading & managing sources with technology (Using PDF- Acrobat reader)

  • annotating texts
  • synthesis of texts
  • Ruf Annotated Bib: Notes about reading, with some drafting notes, and some reflection

Pre-writing & Drafting

Notepad doc for assignment name: Quotes (date, page numbers)

Theme-based Ruf Outline: Notes page with Word: Identifying themes/key ideas in readings, used a parenthetical citations.

Theme 1: Mass incarceration

  • (Thompson, 2014)
  • (Banks, 2011; 35-37)

Theme 2…

  • (Smith, 2014)

Drafting & Revision: Google doc as a tool to “search” your own writing, integrate and expand on earlier writing, recycle sources, and revise current writing.

Organization:  Visually outlining ideas on a whiteboard (themes, authors, post its, quotes)

Grad School & Writing/Research as Project Management (Ideas, To Do, Doing, Done):

Online whiteboard (like Trello and other software)




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