Specialized terminology and pedagogic interaction in content teaching in a second language at university level

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This paper aims at analysing the content teaching in a second language, by focusing on the treatment of specialized terminology in classroom discourse. The research is based on a corpus of oral interactions collected in different contexts while teaching content in English and Italian as a second language at university level in Italy and abroad. From the theoretical point of view the study is based on two approaches: a) a social interactionist approach to acquisition, which uses the methodology of conversation analysis, taking into account the essential role of interaction in the process of development of knowledge, in the case of both language and subject competence; b) an approach to classroom discourse, which underlines the relevance of the argumentative dimension in verbal communication in a semantic-pragmatic perspective. With reference to the field of teaching and learning vocabulary, we analyse how the bifocalization on language and content emerges from the interactional discourse; we consider in particular how the specialized terminology of human sciences is managed in the context of pedagogic interaction and of argumentative discourse.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteCLIL Methodology in University Instruction: Online and in the Classroom. An Emerging Framework
Numero di pagine12
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2009


  • classroom interaction
  • didattica del lessico
  • interazione didattica
  • linguaggi specialistici
  • specialized terminology
  • teaching and learning vocabulary


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