PhD in Second Language Studies Dissertation Defense
Interaction and Learning in an Extensive Reading Book Club
Chair: Gabriele Kasper
Monday, November 13, 4:00 p.m.
Moore Hall, Room 155A
As a pedagogical approach to second language (L2) learning, Extensive Reading (ER) has been practiced in various contexts of foreign and second language learning. Evidence for the benefits of ER has accumulated in an extensive body of research (Jeon & Day, 2016; Nakanishi, 2015 for reviews) that documents the effects of individual reading on various L2 learning outcomes. Although ER is often implemented through pedagogical activities that associate individual reading with talk (e.g., Jung, 2017; Shelton-Strong, 2012; Song & Sardegna, 2014; Suk, 2016), there is a lack of empirical studies that examine how ER activities evolve as social interaction and whether and how students benefit from participating in them.
To fill this gap, this dissertation examines students’ long-term development of literacy practices in a book club designed in accordance with ER principles (Day & Bamford, 1998, 2002; Green, 2005). Using multimodal conversation analysis, the study addresses three main topics.
(1) It explicates the interactional organization of the book club and the multimodal practices through which the participants accomplish the institutional agenda.
(2) It tracks how the students become interactionally competent participants over the course of two terms (18 weeks). Specifically, it describes how the students improve the recipient design of their contributions when they present a book to the group and more effectively align themselves as recipients.
(3) The dissertation reveals how the facilitator’s instructions work as a catalyst for transforming the students’ participation practices and evolve the institutional norms. The findings suggest directions for providing ER with an interactional footing and for conducting ER book clubs specifically.