Singapore University of Social Sciences

Classroom Discourse

Classroom Discourse (TSL553)


TSL 553 Classroom Discourse provides students with an insight into the communication system of the classroom by a careful study of the patterns of language use found in the classroom. The patterns of language use demonstrate firstly, that spoken language is often the medium used by the teacher to teach, as well as the medium used by students to demonstrate their learning. Secondly, language is used by the teacher to establish and maintain social relationships in the classroom. And thirdly, spoken language is an important part of the speaker’s identity as well as the speaker’s means to express his/her identity and attitudes.

Level: 5
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY 2 YEARS
E-Learning: - Learning is done MAINLY online using interactive study materials in Canvas. Students receive guidance and support from online instructors via discussion forums and emails. This is supplemented with SOME face-to-face sessions. If the course has an exam component, this will be administered on-campus. To be confirmed


  • Classroom discourse as a communication system
  • Features of classroom discourse and their functions
  • Patterns of language use in the classroom
  • Changes in conceptions of knowledge and learning in education and its impact on classroom discourse
  • Social context and social ends: Their impact on classroom discourse
  • Classroom discourse and equity
  • Classroom interactional competence
  • Classroom discourse and learning
  • Classroom discourse and teaching
  • Teachers as reflective practitioners of their own classroom discourse
  • Teachers as researchers of classroom discourse
  • Approaches to the study of classroom discourse

Learning Outcome

  • Discuss the features and functions of classroom discourse
  • Critique the role of social context and social ends in classroom discourse
  • Examine the teaching practices and learning experiences evident in classroom discourse
  • Appraise different approaches to the study of classroom discourse
  • Evaluate teachers’ roles as reflective practitioners of classroom discourse
  • Plan a research agenda for investigating classroom discourse
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