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Using computerised observation as a tool for capturing classroom interaction

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Fay SmithORCiD, Dr Frank Hardman


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Over the past few years, the authors have developed a computerised system that records interaction between teachers and pupils in the primary classroom. Our Classroom Interaction System (CIS) is able to log the frequency and duration of several different types of discourse. The CIS represents a move away from the paper and pencil techniques, and labour-intensive video transcription traditionally used in this field. The system is mobile, easy to internalise, adaptable, and allows the researcher to capture interaction between teachers and pupils real-time. This paper will outline these advantages. Along with these benefits, however, there are complexities and dilemmas. This paper will discuss a number of methodological issues that represent real obstacles in the quest for a valid and reliable tool for quantifying interaction in the classroom. We will also discuss the potential for this system in a wider range of educational contexts.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Smith F, Hardman F

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Educational Studies

Year: 2003

Volume: 29

Issue: 1

Pages: 39-47

Print publication date: 01/03/2003

ISSN (print): 0305-5698

ISSN (electronic): 1465-3400

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/03055690303264


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