Parvathy K_ ELT_Transferable and Local Writing Skills

Winterowd, W. (1980). Transferable and Local Writing Skills. Journal of Advanced Composition, 1(1), 1-3. Retrieved from

The article talks about two kinds of skills, local and transferable skills of writing. While local skills deal with the genre of the writing, the transferable skills encompass the basic features and mechanics of writing. Along with his colleague, Betty Bomar, the author believes that Krashen’s theory of second language learning applies to children learning writing skills too, therefore it is important to change the way we look at teaching writing skills. The author believes that while local skills are more or less learned, the transferable skills need to be acquired.

This article plays an important role in defining the basis of my research. I intend to study the way writing skill is taught in a particular grade at a school, or over few different schools, then study the effect of topic-based writing assignments. However, now it is possible for me to outline my research under the two broad categories of ‘local’ and ‘transferable’ skills.

The article works on the need for teachers to understand how to teach writing for children, however the methods are tedious and will not let the teacher focus on anything but writing skills. There is no flexibility as to how to include other skills into this, except for reading. I believe that all 4 LSRW skills should be taught hand-in-hand.


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