Many students are intimidated by having their writing evaluated because theyâ€™ve so often encountered evaluators who assume the role of a judge. Students will be encouraged to take risks in their writing, such as breaking free from the five-paragraph model and trying new approaches, if they come to trust their writing instructor as a coach. A coach recognizes that there are more and less effective ways to accomplish a task, but instead of simply docking a student who chooses a less effective approach, a coach will guide that student toward a better alternative.
At the other end of the spectrum is the writing instructor who functions like an indulgent parent. While a parent might applaud from the stands, providing encouragement without direction, a good coach challenges students to improve on their strengths and to grow beyond their weaknesses.