Talking for writing: Questions in peer response to outline presentations in an L2 writing classroom

Oh, Youngmi
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Questions are pervasive not only in ordinary conversation, but also in institutional interaction (Hayano, 2013). When deployed in institutional interaction, questions can serve as important resources and tools in pursuit of the institutional goals and practices, as has been shown for medical visits, courtroom interactions, broadcast news interviews (Heritage & Clayman, 2010), and educational contexts (Koshik, 2002; Lee, 2006). This paper examines question used by students asked to respond to outline presentations in an L2 writing classroom, focusing on the questions deployed in opening the response talk and giving advice while the response talk is underway. Drawing on conversation analysis as an analytical framework, this paper aims to show that the responders’ orientation to less fulfilled assignments or problematic potential with the writer’s presentation exploits questions, enacting their rights to critique. Also the question-answer sequence(s) involved in the previous talk function as an entry to advising talk, serving as resources and grounds for advice-giving. It is hoped that the findings can contribute to an understanding of the peer response on text is being talk and to draw more attention to peer response in the early stage of the writing process in L2 writing classrooms.
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