Approaches to Gender and Spoken Classroom Discourse by Helen Sauntson

By Helen Sauntson

Gender is a hotly debated subject within the box of schooling. The position that language performs in academic contexts in particular within the lecture room has lengthy been stated. Innovatively combining methods within the research of lecture room discourse this book offers wealthy empirical findings in addition to being theoretically fascinating and worthwhile.

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This approach arguably also addresses the two key criticisms of ethnography, as discussed by Rampton et al. (2004). The first is that it fails to enable generalisations to be made beyond the limited number of situations that the researcher has observed and been involved in. The use of SFDA (or similar approaches), as an approach which is well-suited to yielding quantitative data whilst still enabling that data to be gathered using ethnographic methods of participant observation, could at least enable the identification of linguistic patterns 26 Approaches to Gender and Spoken Classroom Discourse which may reveal particular trends.

Rampton et al. discuss how, despite the differences between approaches such as CDA and CA, they do, in fact, share similarities in terms of enabling the researcher to uncover or deconstruct the commonsense or takenfor-granted assumptions that may pervade a particular interactional context: . . , 2004: 7) Although CA is not used in this book, SFDA similarly uses a pre-coded analytic framework to describe the structures and patterns in spoken interaction. Therefore, I argue that just as CDA and CA can work alongside each other in complementary ways, so can SFDA and CDA.

The names of all participants involved in the research have been changed or removed in all transcriptions as a means of anonymising them. Recordings of student–student group discussion Any group discussion that took place during lessons was audio-recorded using digital voice recorders placed on the tables where the students were working. Two recorders were used simultaneously, which enabled two groups to be recorded at any one time. I was responsible for switching the recorders on and off, although I tended to move away from the groups while they were being recorded.

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