Seeing the Light: Discourse and Practice in the Optics Lab

  • Roger Säljö
  • Kerstin Bergqvist
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (volume 160)


The general issue addressed in this chapter concerns the relationship between perception and discourse. The empirical analyses reported focus on how students and teachers, working in the context of a physics laboratory in school, communicate about the properties of light. It is shown that, in order to understand the behavior of light in the experiments that are set up, one has to have access to elements of a theory of light that make the phenomena produced appear as significant according to a particular perspective. Thus, seeing in the sense of identifying something that is culturally and contextually significant is a sociocultural process that relies on discursive resources.


Solid Object Discursive Practice Optical Bench Sociocultural Perspective Chess Player 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roger Säljö
    • 1
  • Kerstin Bergqvist
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Communication StudiesLinköping UniversitySweden

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