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Giving instructions in the classroom: A gender aspect on the language used
University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The PISA report from 2012 reveals that boys' and girls' results in school differ. In Ireland,where this study took place, and in many other countries in the world, girls score higher overall results than boys in the second-level assessments, and the gap is widening. The second level assessments are the final tests in compulsory school, which determine the students' grades. With this in mind I decided to investigate one crucial part of teaching – giving instructions.

The aim of this study was to investigate if there are any differences in how teachers give instructions in single-gender classes with boys and single-gender classes with girls and how the instructions are followed up. An additional aim was to discuss if different teaching methods have developed from this and, if so, what they are. The analysis was based on the following linguistic features of the instructions given: vocabulary, sentence length, intonation, pitch and gesture. Four classroom observations in four primary classes made up the material in this study.

The results were analysed and discussed in relation to previous research in this area and a gender theoretical perspective, followed by a critical discourse analysis. The results showed that girls were given more instructions, in terms of number of instructions, than the boys. Intonation and pitch showed differences that could be related to classroom environment. The observations showed significant differences in classroom environment with more disruptive talking in the boys' classes. A teacher-centered teaching method using direct instruction was common in both schools and the results showed that there were differences in teaching methods between the schools that could be related to gender. The critical discourse analysis revealed that the use of direct instruction led to an uneven power relationship in communication between teacher and student.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 42 p.
Keyword [en]
Single-gender classes, gender differences, instructions, teaching methods, direct instruction, vocabulary, sentence length, intonation, pitch, gesture
National Category
Languages and Literature
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-7986Local ID: EON200OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hv-7986DiVA: diva2:848630
Subject / course
English
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2015-09-07 Created: 2015-08-25 Last updated: 2015-09-07Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf