Statewide Writing Research Project
Visit website  

The Statewide Writing Research Project is a collaboration between the Writing in Digital Environments (WIDE) Research Center, Oakland County (MI) Intermediate School District, Oakland Writing Project, Chippewa River Writing Project, and a number of teachers and schools from around Michigan.

The project aims to answer the following questions:

        • Can students learn to provide quality feedback on writing?
        • Can students learn to use feedback to make effective revisions?
        • What should learning progressions for review and argument look like within the context of secondary education in Michigan?



    We will work with approximately 30 instructors, and approximately 1,000 students to help students better provide feedback to their peers, with the aim of leading to writing improvement.

    To facilitate feedback, as well as to collect data, the instructors involved in this project will use the Eli Review software in their classrooms. Eli is an instructional technology developed by writing teachers for writing teachers. It has been constructed to automatically collect the data necessary to calculate a helpfulness score for each peer review by accounting for specific reviewer actions—not merely what they write in review comments—and how both writers and instructors respond to these. To learn more about Eli, please visit the Eli Review website. Our project blog where teachers will be sharing their experiences can be found here

    This study will follow this trajectory:

    1. Baseline assessment of student helpfulness and quality in argumentative writing (using Eli)
    2. Period of professional learning (PL) on Eli, teaching review and revision, rhetoric and argument, and issues related to learning progressions
    3. In parallel with PL, normal instruction on argumentative writing in each classroom using Eli and a shared approach to review and revision

    To learn more about the Statewide Writing Research Project, please contact principal investigator Jeff Grabill, PhD, at, or

    Jeff Grabill
    Bessey Hall
    435 Farm Lane, Room 235E
    East Lansing, MI 48824
    (517) 355-2400