Monday, 18 September 2017

Have you heard of cubing?

As mentioned in previous posts (here and here), I have been taking the edX Academic and Business Writing course with Berkeley. In week four of the course, we were introduced to the idea of cubing. This 'pre-writing' concept is to simply take half an hour to plan a writing project before we start. We spend five minutes brainstorming ideas under each of the cube 'sides' below (excerpted from the course) before we start writing:
  1. Describe your topic. What is its shape, size, colour, texture? Does it make any sounds? Does it taste like something? Use all your sense to describe it.
  2. Compare your topic to other related topics. How is it similar or different?
  3. Associate your topic with another topic. In other words, what does your topic make you think about? It might be something unexpected. Be creative.
  4. Analyse the parts of your topic. How do they fit together? What do the parts say about the topic? Are all the parts equally important?
  5. Apply your topic. What can you do with it? How is it useful? Who might use it? Who wouldn't use it?
  6. Argue for and against your topic. What are its benefits? How might someone disagree with your topic?
I think cubing is quite a good idea for gathering different perspectives. If you are stuck with where to start, it gives you a breathing space to find a logical way in. I particularly like the opposing views perspective of side six: this is a great way to change 'hats'.

Another good tool to add to the writing arsenal. 


Sam

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