AT&T Writer’s Workbench reinvented for University of Phoenix?

As a facilitator for the University of Phoenix Online, I get to see what they’re doing quite early in the process, and as the largest for-profit educational business in the world, it’s worth keeping track, because in many ways they’re leading the move into online education.

This morning’s news is that their Center for Writing Excellence is announcing a new service called WritePoint Review…

“This is a new automated review service. Students can upload their papers for review, and within minutes they will receive detailed feedback on how they can improve their academic papers and their writing style in general. Comments will focus on format, grammar, organization, punctuation, and usage, but not course content. Content feedback is the responsibility of you as the individual course instructor. NOTE: This service is still in its early stages and may not yet address a comprehensive range of writing errors. However, it should provide students with valuable feedback even now and will become more comprehensive and address a wider range of writing issues over the coming months.”

I read this and realized that what they’ve probably done is taken all those readability scores, sentence complexity analysis tools, and similar that I first bumped into in 1982 on Unix under the umbrella of the AT&T Writer’s Workbench. I’m not 100% positive it’s the same thing, of course, but if that’s the basis of WritePoint Review, it’s a remarkably simple idea and one that could be created in just a few hours.


4 comments on “AT&T Writer’s Workbench reinvented for University of Phoenix?

  1. I facilitate for the U. of Phoenix. They now require students to use the APA format for papers. That requires the acceptance and transmission of attachments for both facilitator and students. Two years ago a virus/worm turned my computer off repeatedly in the middle of online classes. As a result I have never accepted attachments or transmitted them. I have a great fear that by doing so I will open my computer to further worm/virus misery. I have the Symantec anti-virus softwear installed and I am informed the U. of Phoenix has similarly equipped itself with appropriate tools. However, I still get one spam a day from their server, at least, which begins “you have been chosen…”. That should be easy to block, yes? But it isn’t. If they can’t block spam, how can they block a virus which might cause my computer to crash. What do you advise. “Pixillated in Pomona”. Dan Fox

  2. I’m afraid that I haven’t done any work with the University of Phoenix for a long time, Catherine, and have no idea about what you’re asking… Perhaps Google has some information?

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