Dialogic Inquiry: Towards a Socio-cultural Practice and Theory of Educationby Gordon Wells
Pub. Date: 08/28/1999
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
For more than a quarter century, the polemics surrounding educational reform have centered on two points of view: those that favor a "progressive" child-centered form of education, and those that would prefer a return to a more structured, teacher-directed curriculum that emphasizes basic knowledge and skills. Vygotsky's social constructivist theory offers an… See more details below
For more than a quarter century, the polemics surrounding educational reform have centered on two points of view: those that favor a "progressive" child-centered form of education, and those that would prefer a return to a more structured, teacher-directed curriculum that emphasizes basic knowledge and skills. Vygotsky's social constructivist theory offers an alternative solution, placing stress on coconstruction of knowledge by more and less mature participants engaging in joint activity. This theory offers semiotic mediation as the primary means of obtaining knowledge, whereby the less mature participants can seek solutions to everyday problems by using resources existing in society. In addition to using illustrative examples from classroom studies, this book provides a comparative analysis of the theories and complementary developments in works by Vygotsky and the linguist M.A.K. Halliday. This unique volume will be of tremendous benefit to researchers in the fields of education, sociolinguistics, and psychology.
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Table of ContentsConventions of transcription; Introduction; Part I. Establishing the Theoretical Framework: 1. The complementary contributions of Halliday and Vygotsky to a 'language-based theory of learning'; 2. In search of knowledge; 3. Discourse and knowing in the classroom; Part II. Discourse, Learning, and Teaching: 4. Text, talk, and inquiry: schooling as semiotic apprenticeship; 5. Putting a tool to different uses: a reevalution of the IRF sequence; 6. From guessing to predicting: progressive discourse in the learning and teaching of science; 7. Using the tool-kit of discourse in the activity of learning and teaching; 8. Making meaning with text: a genetic approach to the mediating role of writing; Part III. Learning and Teaching in the ZPD: 9. On learning with and from our students; 10. The zone of proximal development and its implications for learning and teaching ; Appendices; References; Indexes.
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