As part of Rua Williams’ session on Writing with Executive Dysfunction, they shared this idea of a Fractal Scaffold, a “mental metacognitive strategy for structuring thoughts and providing clear prompts.”
Please read more about it in context, then come back here for the excerpt below.
- Premise - the core of what you want to say.
- Context - historical background, prior work, examples.
- Substantiate - Explain how the context reinforces the premise.
- Acknowledge - Note complicating contexts, limitations.counterarguments, contested facts, controversies, or other sources of conflict and uncertainty.
- Reaffirm - Justify and restate the premise.
- Point the Way - explain what you are going to do or say next.
The Fractal Scaffold is a mental metacognitive strategy for structuring thoughts and providing clear prompts that can make it easier to produce written expression and organize that expression at the document, section, and paragraph level. Like a real scaffold, the structure provided is not intended to be permanent, and is often completely dismantled and discarded by the time the final product is finished.