TEASIG & TDSIG : Analysing teachers’ discourse around assessment: A critical discourse analysis perspective
The British Council uses standardised criteria to assess our teachers’ classroom performance. These include assessment, understood as a formative, continuous practice, which “helps students and teachers monitor progress and achievement”. In recent years, there has been an organisation-wide drive to consolidate our teachers’ technical and practical understanding of assessment, which has been fleshed out in training and a heightened focus on classroom implementation.
In this context, I set out to explore teachers’ discourse construction of assessment, to ascertain their beliefs around this notion, with the assumption that looking at teachers’ conceptualisations might allow schools and organisations to devise professional development programmes that are more finely tuned to staff development needs. I use a critical discourse analysis perspective, given that I aim to explore teachers’ concepts as evident in their speech.To this purpose, I gathered a speech sample obtained from 10 short teacher interviews. I use the theoretical construct of affect to analyse the teachers’ evaluative language around assessment.
Preliminary results highlight teachers’ developing understanding of assessment, their knowledge gaps around continuous assessment, their biases, and positive and negative affectmarkers.
Viktor Carrasquero is currently the Primary Courses Senior Teacher at the British Council in Hong Kong. His main research interests include teacher training, pronunciation and its teaching, second language acquisition, discourse analysis and variationist sociolinguistics. He is also a Trinity CertTESOL, Cambridge DELTA and Trinity DipTESOL local tutor.
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