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Title: A dialogic endeavour : a study of three newly qualified teachers' journeys towards dialogic teaching
Author: Bignell, Carole
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2012
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This study offers an insight into the experiences of three newly qualified Primary teachers (NQTs) and their pupils as they worked together to develop dialogic talk in their lessons. Within this research I draw upon a range of literature from the field of classroom talk, with a particular focus on the work of Robin Alexander, to underpin discourse analysis of periodic video recordings of talk in these classrooms. Supplemented by teacher interviews, I examine: the way in which each teacher interpreted and enacted strategies to facilitate dialogic talk; the factors that these teachers considered to be inhibitors to and enablers of dialogic talk; and the ways in which some pupils exercised agency within classroom interactions to undertake interpersonal or identity work during dialogic talk sessions. I also examine the extent to which the research approach, which sought to enact dialogic principles, was facilitative of dialogic classroom interactions. During the research, the teachers increased their use of dialogic bids such as prompts, probes and low control acknowledging moves and enabled the pupils to increase their use of linking phrases and displays of reasoning. The teachers felt that time pressures and a difficulty in identifying suitable knowledge-accountable opportunities for dialogic talk within their planning inhibited progress. However, they felt that exposure to dialogic principles within teacher training, supported by school values and shared video analysis and action planning were key to success. Finally, some pupils’ agentive acts within discourse sometimes served to resist or stabilise the teacher’s drive towards dialogic talk, and interpersonal and identity work was simultaneously enacted within this context. Cognisant that teacher/pupil interaction is both complex and open to multiple interpretations, the study concludes that talk in the research classrooms fulfilled both interpersonal and pedagogical functions. Furthermore, professional dialogic discussion and analysis of videoed teaching supported by a colleague can facilitate NQTs in the journey towards becoming more dialogic teachers. The study recommends thatsuch discussion might be underpinned by the analytical framework, developed as part of this research, providing a metacognitive resource for reflecting upon classroom dialogic talk behaviours. Future research should consider how such professional dialogue might be supported by the development of video examples, to be used not as models for imitation but as a starting point for professional discussion and should also seek to find out what teachers consider to be the most effective models for promoting such professional dialogue.
Supervisor: Pahl, Kate Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ed.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available