EDU 511 Discourse for Language Teachers
Department: Master of Education
Module Description: This module covers aspects of written and spoken discourse, with an emphasis on issues which are of interest to language teachers. These include: observing and describing classroom language, assessing student interaction. The module develops a linguistic approach to the study of discourse and shows how this can sharpen our awareness of spoken and written interaction. The module considers the problems of introducing and handling a range of spontaneous discourses in the classroom. It considers the difference between form and function in language and examines the role of pragmatics in conversation, particularly in a cross-cultural setting. It thus allows teachers to reflect on how they use language in the classroom and how such issues are dealt with in teaching. It also considers how the research techniques of Discourse Analysis and Conversational Analysis can provide insights into the classroom. In the analysis of written texts, the module explores the different rhetorical devices used in writing in English and Arabic, and different written styles in English. It examines micro-analysis of issues of cohesion and coherence in texts as well as the macro organization of texts as genres. It also introduces students to Critical Discourse Analysis and critical literacy as a way of approaching the presentation of written texts in the classroom.