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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)



First Advisor

Fred Muskal

First Committee Member

Dennis C. Brennan

Second Committee Member

Marilyn E. Draheim

Third Committee Member

Douglas M. Tedards

Fourth Committee Member

Sharon J. Wieland


This study analyzes teacher change in the implementation of a writing workshop approach to teaching writing as defined by Atwell, Calkins, and Graves. The study followed eleven elementary classroom teachers of one school as they implemented a writing workshop approach over the course of eight months. This qualitative study included data from CBAM Stages of Concern Survey, Writing Workshop Checklist, collaborative conversations, journals, student work and interviews. The qualitative analysis derived a grounded theory from the data. This theory blended the theoretical sensitivity of the researcher, the research data and the practices of the teachers to develop a grounded theory. The study showed that there is a process for change and that implementation is based on a teacher's theoretical understanding of writing development. Three teacher styles were delineated based on the ideology and practices of the eleven teachers. The facilitator believes in sharing control with students and teaches and expects independent writers. The provider teaches students to be independent, but has not fully embraced the belief that all students are capable of learning independence. The producer teaches about writing and does not have an understanding of teaching students to become independent writers. This study provides the staff developer with a tool for helping teachers understand not only the best practices, but also develop a theoretical understanding behind the practices of a writing workshop approach. The teachers who regularly attended the collaborative conversations were supported and made significant progress toward changing their theoretical understanding and practical knowledge of a writing workshop approach. This study provides the staff developer with insight into the change process for teachers.



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