New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies

, Volume 53, Issue 2, pp 209–225 | Cite as

Secondary Students Use of Dialogical Discussion Practices to Foster Greater Interaction

  • Maree J. DaviesEmail author
  • Kane Meissel


This article describes the results of a study that investigated the effect of features of talk that appear to foster higher levels of interaction, within the scope of a larger study (Davies and Meissel in Br Educ Res J 42:342–365, 2016). Students were recruited from seven classrooms across three secondary schools of varying socioeconomic levels within the Auckland region in New Zealand, with four of the classrooms engaging in face-to-face and online discussion in small groups and the other three participating as whole classes. Results indicated a significant increase in the proportion of uptake questions used by students working in small groups for face-to-face group discussions. When placed in online groups (the same groups as the face-to-face groups), uptake questions increased. Classes who worked as a whole class online used significantly more elaborated explanations but, consequently, fewer interactions—less than half as many as the small groups. The results suggest that students using uptake questions fostered higher levels of interactions in both conditions.


Students’ questioning Interactive talk Online learning Group discussions Secondary education 


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Copyright information

© New Zealand Association for Research in Education 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EducationUniversity of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

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