Workshop 1

Monday, July, 1st


(total duration: 8 hours)
Professor Susan Hood
University of Sydney, Australia
Professor James R. Martin
University of Sydney, Australia

Lecturing: the big bad wolf whose time has passed?

In many universities around the world lectures are being challenged, or even dismissed, as an effective teaching/learning activity. The idea of moving ‘content’ on-line and conducting face-to-face interactions with students in small groups in ‘creative collaborative active learning spaces fostering critical thinking’ is becoming increasingly popular. This reflects, in part, the movement of new middle-class ‘progressivist’ pedagogy out of kindergarten, through primary and secondary school, and on to the tertiary sector; and it reflects in part a managerialist economic model encouraging casualisation of staff and out-sourcing of programs. Very little research evidence has been provided, as far as we are aware, supporting the valorising claims of these momentous shifts in the reproduction of knowledge.

In this workshop we’ll focus on the nature of lecturing itself, taking examples from the disciplines of law, biology, engineering and cultural studies. To inform this work we will draw on the ongoing dialogue between Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL) and Legitimation Code Theory (LCT). From the perspective of SFL we will focus in particular on field, its realisation through key discourse semantic systems and the role of paralanguage in lecturing mode. From the perspective of LCT we will draw on specialisation (knowledge and knowers), semantics (gravity and density) and autonomy (positional and relational).

For both morning and afternoon sessions we will begin with an introduction to relevant text analysis tools and continue with hands-on analysis of example texts. 

Some suggestions for pre-reading are offered below.

  • Linguistics and Education2013. 24.1 (Special Issue ‘Cumulative knowledge-building in secondary schooling.’ edited by J R Martin & K Maton).
  • Onomázein 2017. (Special Issue on ‘Systemic Functional Linguistics and Legitimation Code Theory on Education and Knowledge’ edited by J R Martin, K Maton, B Quiroz & M Vidal).
  • Embodied meaning: a systemic functional perspective on body language (J R Martin & M Zappavigna). Functional Linguistics 6.1. 2019.