Investigating Characteristics of a Dialogic Discourse Pattern in Japanese Academic English Classrooms

  •  Mohammad Hadi Ahmadi    


This article investigates the dialogic aspects of discourse in English for Academic Purposes (EAP) classrooms. A more dialogic pattern of classroom discourse indicates that many participants, for example, students as well as the teacher, are involved in generating the whole classroom discourse. For the purpose of determining the level of dialogicality in academic English classes, twenty four lessons of four different teachers were audio- and video-recorded for an entire academic year. The classroom discourse was transcribed and the level of dialogicality was coded based on principles suggested by Nystrand (2003). The principles cover the authenticity of the questions asked by the teacher and the occurrence of uptake. Accordingly, different modes of classroom discourse are observed in each of these classes which are monologic, recitation, and occasionally dialogic. The cases analyzed in this article reveal that it is not just the type of the questions that can lead to establishment of a dialogic mode, but there are some other teacher moves which can be either facilitative or interruptive. These moves are identified and labeled as encouraging student’s participation (ESP) and discouraging student’s participation (DSP). It is argued that these moves can influence the formation of ground rules and consequently the establishment of a dialogic mode. 

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