Contribution to Books
Writing is often defined by what it is: a text, a product; less visible is what it can do: generate new thinking (see 1.5, "Writing Mediates Activity"). As an activity undertaken to bring new understandings, writing in this sense is not about crafting a sentence or perfecting a text but about mulling over a problem, thinking with others, and exploring new ideas or bringing disparate ideas together (see "Metaconcept: Writing Is an Activity and a Subject of Study"). Writers of all kinds—from self-identified writers to bloggers to workplace teams to academic researchers—have had the experience of coming upon new ideas as a result of writing. Individually or in a richly interactive environment, in the classroom or workplace or at home, writers use writing to generate knowledge that they didn't have before.
This document was originally published in Naming What We Know: Threshold Concepts of Writing Studies by Utah State University Press. Copyright restrictions may apply.
Estrem, Heidi. (2015). "Writing is a Knowledge-Making Activity". Naming What We Know: Threshold Concepts of Writing Studies, 19-20.