An analysis of Trainee Teachers’ use of Code-switching in the Bilingual Secondary Classroom: a case from Wales

Abstract

Code-switching has been documented widely in the literature. The sociocultural approach to the study of classroom interaction as described by Mercer (2000) is based on a detailed analysis of the discourse of language classrooms. Mercer identified various linguistic techniques used by teachers.

I wanted to analyse trainee teachers beliefs about code-switching as a classroom practice. In the study, an examination of classroom practice was carried out with two bilingual Welsh English trainee teachers. Both trainees were observed and their teaching recorded. The trainees were also interviewed about their attitudes to the use of L1 in the L2 secondary English classroom. Both sequences and interviews were recorded in secondary schools in North Wales, where the language of the schools is predominantly Welsh.The data obtained was analysed using critical discourse analysis. The focus is on the extent to which the trainees have been able to make their teaching accessible to the bilingual pupils in their care. The instances where the teachers switched briefly from English into Welsh seemed to correspond to the functions of code-switching identified by Camilleri. The code-switching suggests a legitimate way of using shared language resources to scaffold pupils learning.

Clapham, J. (2011) An analysis of Trainee Teachers’ use of Code-switching in the Bilingual Secondary Classroom: a case from Wales. Educationalfutures, [online] Vol. 1(3). Available at: http://educationstudies.org.uk/?p=524 [Accessed 18 Nov, 2017].

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Journal Issue:
Volume 3(1) 2011


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