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The disciplinary literacy discussion matrix: A heuristic tool for initiating collaboration in higher education
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Physics Didactics. (Physics Education Research, Fysikens didaktik)
2011 (English)In: Across the Disiplines, ISSN 1554-8244, Vol. 8, no 3Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this paper I address the issue of collaboration between content lecturers and language lecturers or educational researchers. Whilst such collaboration is a desirable goal for disciplinary learning in monolingual settings, I suggest it takes on extra significance when two or more languages are involved in teaching and learning a discipline. Drawing on work in the area of scientific literacy, I make a case for the concept of disciplinary literacy as a useful vehicle for such collaboration, with the Carnegie Foundation's notion of the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) being used as the overarching motivation. I argue that input from peers in other disciplines can help content lecturers, make informed decisions about the particular mix of communicative practices that are needed to develop disciplinary literacy in their courses. Clearly, this mix will be different from discipline to discipline and indeed vary within a discipline depending on the local linguistic environment and the nature of the course under discussion. As an aid to collaboration, I present a simple heuristic tool for initiating inter-faculty discussion—the Disciplinary Literacy Discussion Matrix. Using the matrix, content lecturers can discuss the disciplinary literacy goals of their teaching with other professionals, making their own decisions about the particular mix of communicative practices desired and the most appropriate methods for promoting these.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
WAC Clearinghouse , 2011. Vol. 8, no 3
Keyword [en]
Disciplinary literacy, multimodal literacy, disciplinary discourse
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Physics with specialization in Physics Education
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-159951OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-159951DiVA: diva2:447625
Available from: 2011-10-12 Created: 2011-10-12 Last updated: 2013-02-08Bibliographically approved

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