Display questions in and outside the classroom

From: Griswold, Olga (ogriswol@humnet.ucla.edu)
Date: Sat Mar 05 2005 - 09:50:24 PST


I am looking for literature on the different functions of display vs.
referential questions in the classroom. I am somewhat familiar with the
literature on the role of such questions in second language classrooms, but
most of the research in this area discusses the primary functions of display
questions as comprehension checks and as means of eliciting particular forms
(e.g. grammatical structures and/or vocabulary) form L2 learners. The
pedagogical advice seems to be to increase the number of referential
questions and to decrease the number of display ones in order to promote
more communicative classrooms.

In my own analysis of classroom talk (a citizenship class at an adult
school), however, I am finding quite different functions of display
questions in the co-construction of content and linguistic knowledge. I am
new to the investigation of interaction in the classrooms that are not
strictly ESL, and I would very much appreciate any recommendations on any
literature addressing the functions of teacher questions in non-language
classrooms, especially in adult settings.

Thanks in advance to everyone who can help,

Olga Griswold

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