ERIC Number: ED319780
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Instructional Discourse and Student Engagement.
Nystrand, Martin; Gamoran, Adam
This paper examines two kinds of student engagement: "procedural," which concerns classroom rules and regulations; and "substantive," which involves sustained commitment to the content and issues of academic study. It describes the manifestations of these two forms of engagement, explains how they relate differently to student outcomes, and offers some empirical propositions using data collected on literature instruction, collected during 1987-88 from 58 eighth-grade English classes (N=1,041 students). The results provide support for the following three hypotheses: (1) disengagement adversely affects achievement; (2) procedural engagement has an attenuated relationship to achievement because its observable indicators conflate procedural and substantive engagement; and (3) substantive engagement has a strong, positive effect on achievement. Features of substantively engaged instruction include authentic questions or questions that have no prespecified answers; uptake or the incorporation of previous answers into subsequent questions; and high-level teacher evaluation or teacher certification and incorporation of student responses in subsequent discussion. Each of these features is noteworthy because it involves reciprocal interaction and negotiation between students and teachers, which is said to be the hallmark of substantive engagement. (Author/TJH)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Classroom Techniques, Discourse Modes, Effective Schools Research, Elementary School Students, English Literature, Grade 8, Instructional Effectiveness, Junior High Schools, Questioning Techniques, Student Participation, Teacher Student Relationship, Teaching Methods
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center on Effective Secondary Schools, Madison, WI.