We’re coming to the end of this multi-post overview of Jaana Suviniity’s PhD thesis on the role of interactive features in lectures delivered in English as a lingua franca (ELF) – when English is not a first language for the speaker or listeners. When students rated these lectures on a scale of “challenging” to “accessible”, it became apparent that a major difference between the more or less accessible lectures was the quantity of interactive features. After giving a general overview of her data and findings, I reviewed Jaana’s findings on control acts in ELF lectures. Now I’ll take the two other interactive features she examined – questions and repetitions.
“So what does it mean now?”
The abundance of questions posed by teachers in the more accessible lectures was what first motivated Jaana to investigate interactive features. The overall figures for the six lectures she sampled helped to clarify her first impressions – in total she found the teachers asked 59 questions in the challenging lectures, while the accessible lecturers asked 179. But what kind of questions are they? Jaana started with a broad division between audience-oriented and content-oriented questions.