chapter  6
24 Pages


Raising Awareness and Stance-Taking
WithGerrard Mugford

Chapter 6 proposes a pedagogy to give foreign-language users choices in how to react when confronted with uncooperative interaction, linguistic impoliteness and verbal aggression. Noticing and stance-taking can provide clearly identifiable means for implementing pedagogic intervention. Noticing involves identifying pertinent information and identifying communicative intent. Stance means expressing feelings, determining the degree of certainty and knowledge in a negative situation and evaluating communicative choices and the implications and consequences of following a given course of action.

This pedagogical framework encourages learners to develop their own individual level of response and to actively negotiate negative situations. One way to pursue this objective is through Carter and McCarthy’s Illustration-Interaction-Induction. This approach favours the use of real-life data as learners study actual interpersonal language use and develop their own interactive patterns and practices.

To examine the viability, challenges and difficulties of encouraging awareness-raising activities, English-language learners were exposed to stance-taking implementation strategies with regard to confusion, impoliteness/rudeness and hostility. Students looked at the results of narrative questionnaires from a group of foreign-language users who had recalled and reflected on negative incidents and evaluated how they would have reacted to the incidents of confusion, impoliteness/rudeness and hostility.