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Matching gestures: Teachers’ repetitions of students’ gestures in second language learning classrooms
Linköping University, Department of Culture and Communication, Language and Culture. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7562-991X
2015 (English)In: Journal of Pragmatics, ISSN 0378-2166, Vol. 76, no 1, 30-45 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study is about teachers’ responsive matching gestures in small instructing/learning projects in Swedish as a second language classes. Matching gestures are those gestures that are similar, if not identical, to those in the prior turns-at-talk. The focus of this study is on the repeated gestures, which are used, among other practical purposes, as teaching devices. They are examined in different sequence types such as correction, reformulation and explanation sequences. The data used for this study is a collection of excerpts extracted from the video recordings of teacher-student conversations. An ethnomethodological / conversation analytic framework is adapted for examining the phenomenon. The multimodal analysis of the excerpts shows that matching gestures in language learning situations have a double function. They are used for maintaining and sustaining intersubjectivity, and also for constructing teachable moments as well as learning opportunities. They are used as tying devices to connect teachers’ actions to the students’ prior actions, and are resources for the display of interactive coengagements and strong co-participations. Moreover, matching gestures are used as teaching devices indicating lapses in the competence of the students demonstrated in their verbal productions. The teachers employ matching gestures along with some  verbal affiliates, when the matching gestures are crucial parts of the teachers’ contributions foregrounding the verbal forms as substitutes or remedial proposal for (enhancing) the students’ utterances. That is, matching gestures are used in second language learning situations for proffering learnables through highlighting an alternative way of telling and exhibiting in that language.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2015. Vol. 76, no 1, 30-45 p.
Keyword [en]
Conversation Analysis, Ethnomethodology, Multimodal interaction analysis, Matching gestures, Second language learning, Students’ gestures, Teachers’ responses
Keyword [sv]
Jämförande språkvetenskap och lingvistik Tvärvetenskapliga studier Lärande
National Category
Specific Languages
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-104918DOI: 10.1016/j.pragma.2014.11.006ISI: 000349268900003OAI: diva2:700069

On the day of the defence date the status of this article was Manuscript.

Available from: 2014-03-03 Created: 2014-03-03 Last updated: 2015-03-10Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Learnables in Action: The Embodied Achievement of Opportunities for Teaching and Learning in Swedish as a Second Language Classrooms
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Learnables in Action: The Embodied Achievement of Opportunities for Teaching and Learning in Swedish as a Second Language Classrooms
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Lärande genom handling : Hur möjligheter till undervisning och lärande åstadkoms i svenska som andraspråkutbildning
Abstract [en]

This doctoral dissertation is an empirical qualitative research study on the emergence of learnables in classrooms of Swedish as a second language. It adopts a dialogical and praxeological approach, and analysis is based on video recorded teacher-student interactivities in classrooms. Learnables are taken to be linguistic items or constructs that are displayed as unknown by students, or problematized by students or teachers, and therefore oriented to as explainable, remediable, or improvable. Learnables are introduced in planned or less planned classroom activities, either in passing, while continuing the current main activity, or in sidesequences. In these activities, teachers and students not only talk, but also use other embodied resources (e.g. pointing) or available artifacts (e.g. worksheets) to highlight linguistic learnables. Teachers and students use these resources for achieving and maintaining intersubjectivity as well as contributing learnables to the interactivities. Through manifest embodied practices, abstract linguistic learnables become objectified, and knowledge about them gets organized in and through joint co-operative activities.

Abstract [sv]

Denna avhandling är en empirisk, kvalitativ studie om uppkomsten av s.k. ”learnables” i svenska som andraspråksutbildning. Studien antar ett dialogiskt och praxeologiskt perspektiv, och analysen baseras på video-inspelade lärare-elevinteraktiviteter i klassrummet. ”Learnables” utgörs av språkliga objekt eller konstruktioner, som hanteras som obekanta av elever, eller som problematiseras av elever eller lärare, och därför orienteras emot som objekt som kan förklaras, korrigeras eller förbättras. ”Learnables” kan uppstå i planerade eller mindre planerade klarssrumsaktiviteter, antingen i förbigående, samtidigt som huvudaktiviteten fortsätter utan avbrott, eller i sidosekvenser. I dessa aktiviteter använder lärare och elever inte bara talspråk, utan även andra kroppsliga resurser (t.ex. pekningar) eller tillgängliga artefakter (t.ex. papper) för att fokusera på språkliga ”learnables”. Lärare och elever använder dessa medel för att uppnå och bibehålla intersubjektivitet, samt för att bidra med ”learnables” till interaktiviteterna. Genom konkreta kroppsliga metoder blir abstrakta, språkliga ”learnables” objektifierade och kunskapen om dem organiseras i och genom deltagarnas koordinerade handlingar.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2014. 102 p.
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 610Studies in Language and Culture, ISSN 1403-2570 ; 24
Learnables, Ethnomethodology, Conversation Analysis, Dialogism, Second language learning, Multimodal interaction analysis, Gestures, Embodied actions, Classroom discourse, Swedish as a second language, Lärande, Etnometodologi, Samtalsanalys, Dialogism, Andraspråksinlärning, Multimodal interaktionsanalys, Gester, Förkroppsligade handlingar, Klassrumsdiskurs, Svenska som andraspråk
National Category
Specific Languages
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-104920 (URN)10.3384/diss.diva-104920 (DOI)978-91-7519-387-8 (print) (ISBN)
Public defence
2014-03-28, Key 1, House Key, Campus Valla, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 10:15 (English)
Available from: 2014-03-03 Created: 2014-03-03 Last updated: 2015-02-02Bibliographically approved

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Majlesi, Ali Reza
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