TYPES OF QUESTIONS EMPLOYED IN EDUCATION: A CLOSER LOOK AT THE FOREIGN LANGUAGE TEACHING CLASSROOM DISCOURSE
Keywords:classroom discourse, question types, display/referential questions, closed/open questions
Questions that take place in an instructional context may vary according to their topicality, agent, preponderance of answers, authenticity, source, and syntax. This study aims to investigate the distribution of different question types employed in a foreign language setting at tertiary level through a typology-based checklist prepared by the researcher. The findings, based upon the video recordings of 3 consecutive sessions, show that teacher-directed node questions play an important role in the construction of classroom discourse, as demonstrated by their quantitative predominance. Moreover, closed, referential, and factual questions seem to be preferred over open, display, and inferential or experience-based questions, respectively. It is indicated on account of these results that classroom discourse may be shaped by factors that are intrinsically different from that of daily communication. In addition to the prevalence of node questions, authenticity and dependence upon sources other than factual information are discussed as key points that could render a foreign language classroom more communicative.