Word searches in Persian tutoring sessions
Opportunities for language learning
Word searches have been widely examined in L1 conversation and L2 conversation. A word search occurs when speakers encounter problems retrieving the words needed to continue their talk, which may be completed by the speakers themselves or other interlocutors. This study uses a conversation analytic framework to analyze word search practices that turn into language learning. The study explores how participants enter word searches and transform them into language learning experiences. The data are from seven hours of video- and/or audio-taped naturally occurring conversations in Persian tutoring sessions between a native Persian-speaking tutor and a native English-speaking tutee. The study reveals that, despite limited linguistic competence, the tutee is an interactionally competent speaker who uses word searches as an interactional resource to solve communication breakdowns. The study also shows how the participants develop word searches into explicit pedagogical opportunities and engage in teaching and learning practices.
Keywords: word search, Conversation Analysis, repair, Persian, language learning
Published online: 17 August 2020
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