You are here

Academic Moves for College and Career Readiness, Grades 6-12

Academic Moves for College and Career Readiness, Grades 6-12
15 Must-Have Skills Every Student Needs to Achieve

© 2015 | 256 pages | Corwin

Analyze, argue, compare/contrast, describe, determine, develop, evaluate, explain, imagine, integrate, interpret, organize, summarize, support, and transform . . .

Can a mere fifteen words turn today’s youth into the innovative, ambitious thinkers we need? Yes, contend Jim Burke and Barry Gilmore, coauthors of Academic Moves for College and Career Readiness, because these are the moves that make the mind work and students must learn if they’re to achieve academically. It’s that simple.

Or is it? To arrive at these fifteen critical reading, writing, and thinking processes, Jim and Barry combed through the standards, research, and secondary curriculum—and that’s for starters. Then, for each of these powerhouse processes, they developed a lesson structure, assignments, and activities so you can teach with potency, right away, and immediately cultivate in students discipline-specific habits of mind.

Here’s the best part yet: Jim and Barry distill each intellectual process into a potent concision that nevertheless spans subject areas:

  • Before, during, and after sections offer essential questions, lesson ideas, and activities to assist you in instruction.
  • Two sample student pieces illustrate not only what to look for but the process for getting there.
  • Culminating tasks include producing an analytic essay, visual text, argument, narrative and informational writing, poetry, descriptive science writing, and explanatory writing in math.
  • Every chapter has a correlation chart to Webb’s Depth of Knowledge to deepen understanding and a reproducible rubric to aid in assessment.

At the end of the day, what we want is for our students to know how to think at high levels in any discipline in school or any arena in life. In Academic Moves for College and Career Readiness, Jim and Barry translate these processes into remarkable instructional protocols. Use the book and you’ll know for yourself what a revolution they’ve created. 

Introduction: The Language of Learning
1. Analyze
2. Argue
3. Compare/Contrast
4. Describe
5. Determine
6. Develop
7. Evaluate
8. Explain
9. Imagine
10. Integrate
11. Interpret
12. Organize
13. Summarize
14. Support
15. Transform
I. The Other Words  
II. Academic Writing Moves  
III. Working With the Words Across Disciplines  
IV. Academic Moves: Etymology  
V. Teaching by Design Using Webb’s Depth of Knowledge Model  
VI. Standards Correlation Chart (Texas, Florida, Indiana, and Virginia)  
VII. Anchor Charts  
VIII. Graphic Organizers  

Free resources

The A-List: Essential Academic Words

You can post this list of essential academic words, found in Academic Moves, along with their definitions in your classroom or give a copy to every student. (Secondary)


This book has been adopted to be in our methods course library for English education majors, and was purchased and paid for by our Race to the Top Grant (RTTT3) in January 2016 (one copy).

Dr Christina L Lyons
English Dept, Southern Illinois University
September 19, 2015

Purchasing options

Volume Discounts Available

contact corwin

Please select a format:

ISBN: 9781483379807
$33.95  $26.95*
*Includes a 20% everyday educator discount!

For instructors