Coherence in interaction has already been examined as a pragmatic feature of discourse, or propositional feature of speech. It has even been formally described in the process of producing talk-in-interaction (Craig & Tracy 1983). However, no account of the organization of coherence in second-language interaction has yet been developed.
The aim of this study is to investigate how coherence is built in second-language interaction occurring among non-Swedish adults who are in the early stages of learning Swedish as a second language. The study shows how coherence is not just a verbal product, rather a shared process in multimodal interaction. The cases collected for the study are taken from ca. 10-hour recordings in classrooms as chosen settings. The methodology adopted for the research is CA with emphasis on the multimodal analysis of interaction.
Following Goodwin (2000) taking embodied actions, mobility and spatial configurations into account, this study demonstrates how participants, by employing two organizations of attention and recognition via different semiotic resources, co-author the situated meaning and make a collaborative effort to construct coherence in interaction. The organizations of attention and recognition can be described by means of how participants orient to an object or a topic in interaction, and how they reflect the recognition of the topic/object in their actions through audibly and visually recognizable resources.