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Eurasian Society of Educational Research
7321 Parkway Drive South, Hanover, MD 21076, USA
dialogic teaching mathematics classroom conversations preservice teachers question types talk moves

Following up: Questions and Talk Moves in Preservice Teachers’ Mathematics Classroom Conversations

Hege Myklebust , Maru Alamirew Guadie

Our research aim is to describe how Preservice Teachers (PSTs) can rehearse and prepare for leading productive talks in mathematics and other subjects.


Our research aim is to describe how Preservice Teachers (PSTs) can rehearse and prepare for leading productive talks in mathematics and other subjects. Based on literature and previous research on what constitutes productive talks, we focus on questions and talk moves in this case study, where we follow three groups of PSTs during their practicum, practicing conducting productive talks in mathematics. Our research questions are: What kinds of questions do PSTs ask? What kinds of talk moves do they use? How do these questions and talk moves contribute to the PSTs breaking the IRE (Initiation–Response–Evaluation) pattern and moving towards more productive mathematics talks with complex exchanges of questions and responses? And furthermore: How can we use these findings to improve teacher education in this field? We find that leading productive talks in the mathematics classroom is a challenging task, but there is variation between our three groups in what they struggle with. In accordance with previous research, we also find that the third turn in the exchange, following up after a question and a response is a crucial point in the conversation. One recommendation for teacher education is that video filming and analysing classroom talks might help PSTs to become conscious of and improve on this point. Further research is needed both on long term effect of such practice and focus, and on other ways to improve classroom talks in mathematics and other subjects.

Keywords: Dialogic teaching, mathematics classroom conversations, preservice teachers, question types, talk moves.

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