Exploring Classroom Discourse
Language in Action
By Steve Walsh
Routledge – 2011 – 248 pages
Routledge Introductions to Applied Linguistics consists of introductory level textbooks covering the core topics in Applied Linguistics, designed for those entering postgraduate studies and language professionals returning to academic study. The books take an innovative "practice to theory" approach, with a ‘back to front’ structure which takes the reader from real life problems and issues in the field, then enters into a discussion of intervention and how to engage with these concerns. The final section concludes by tying the practical issues to theoretical foundations. Additional features include tasks with commentaries, a glossary of key terms, and an annotated further reading section.
This book looks particularly at the relationship between language, interaction and learning. Providing a comprehensive account of current perspectives on classroom discourse, the book aims to promote a fuller understanding of interaction, regarded as being central to effective teaching and introduces the concept of classroom interactional competence (CIC).
The case is made in this book for a need not only to describe classroom discourse, but to ensure that teachers and learners develop the kind of interactional competence which will result in more engaged, dynamic classrooms where learners are actively involved in the learning process. This approach makes an invaluable resource for language teachers, as well as students of language and education, and language acquisition within the field of applied linguistics.
‘I just have to tell you how much I am enjoying Exloring Classroom Discourse. It's accessible, comprehensive and generally a lovely, lovely book. One of the best books I've read for a long time.’ - Joan Cutting, University of Edinburgh, UK
"…'Exploring Classroom Discourse' has much to offer both pre- and in-service teachers, as well as researchers into classroom discourse, and postgraduate students in various areas of applied linguistics. It is notable for clarity of expression, and distils material from a wide range of academic studies into a brew which should prove more than palatable for both teachers and teacher educators."
In System, Brian Poole, English Language Institute of Singapore
"This text speaks powerfully to both teacher educators and teachersin-training, not only guiding them through classroom discourse exploration, but reminding them every step of the way why such investigation is essential." - Discourse Studies
Section A: Problems and practices. 1. Introduction. 2. Classroom Discourse and Teaching. 3. Classroom Discourse and Learning. Section B Interventions. 4. Why Study Classroom Discourse? 5. Features of Classroom Discourse. 6. Traditional Approaches to Studying Classroom Discourse. 7. Alternative Approaches to Analyzing Classroom Discourse. Section C Theory. 8. Enhancing Understandings of Classroom Discourse. 9. Classroom Interactional Competence. 10. Summary and Conclusions.
Steve Walsh is a senior lecturer in the School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences, Newcastle University,UK. He is the Editor of Classroom Discourse, a Routledge journal.