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Teaching, learning and classroom discourse. Approaches to the study of educational discourse

César Coll & Derek Edwards (Eds.)

Price: 19€
Language: English, French

136 pp | ISBN: 84-921753-2-X | Published March 1997
16,5x24 cm | Paperback
Illustrations: 1 tab.; 1 fig
Editions in other countries: Ensino, aprendizagem e discurso em sala de aula. Aproximações ao estudo do discurso educacional. Porto Alegre: Artmed, 1998
Translation: Michael Mously (4), Patrick Partridge (8)

Over the past two decades, educational discourse has become a priority focus of attention for researchers into school teaching and learning processes. All the studies in this volume share the basic idea that the analysis of educational discourse, and more specifically the analysis of the speech produced by teachers and learners in the course of teaching and learning activities, is essential to identifying the meanings that circulate and are negotiated in the classroom.

The analysis of classroom discourse is seen as a crucial way of progressing towards a deeper understanding of why and how learners learn, or fail to learn, and of why and how teachers contribute, to a greater or lesser degree, to promoting this learning. The main roots of this perspective are in Vygotsky and sociocultural psychology, including the central role given by Vygotsky to educational interaction in the formation of mind. However, the authors adopt a range of perspectives and tensions within and across those shared concerns.

The chapters vary in the relative importance or priority given to discourse, context, action and cognition. These elements of sociocultural psychology are augmented by developments from other disciplines including conversation analysis, rhetoric, phenomenology and functional linguistics. The articles examine a variety of classroom situations and activities including debating, developing writing skills, learning science, mutual monitoring, and generating predictions. Differences arise in the aspects of discourse considered relevant to the analysis, and the relation between discourse and non-discourse activity, the institutional context, and the school curriculum.


Keywords: Classroom interaction. Discourse analysis.

Readership: Teachers, educational psychologists.



Neil Mercer. Socio-cultural perspectives and the study of classroom discourse


Jaan Valsiner. Bounded indeterminacy in discourse processes


Derek Edwards. Toward a discursive psychology of classroom education


César Coll & Javier Onrubia. Toward the construction of shared meaings in the classroom: joint activity and semiotic mechanisms in the monitoring performed by teacher and learners


Gordon Wells. From guessing to predicting: progressive discourse in the learning and teaching of science


Antonia Candela. The discursive construction of argumentative contexts in science education


Marie-Joseph Besson, Sandra Canelas-Trevisi, Joaquim Dolz, Edivanda Mugrabi & Bernard Schneuwly. Discours d'enseignement et expression écrite


Juan Daniel Ramírez & James V. Wertsch. Rhetoric and literacy: the functions of debates in adult education

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