Walton's types of argumentation dialogues as classroom discourse sequences

Chrysi Rapanta, Andri Christodoulou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
21 Downloads (Pure)


Dialogic argumentation has thus far been proposed as a way to analyse, understand, and promote meaningful classroom interactions. However, currently there is a lack of systematic proposals for conceptualising argumentation dialogue goals as part of teachers' pedagogical repertoire. Our main goal is to operationalise an existing framework of argumentation dialogue types, the one proposed by argumentation theorist Douglas Walton. To do so, we first identify a set of epistemic criteria for meaningful, from an argumentation point of view, discursive interactions, which we use as ‘framing indicators’ to enrich Walton's existing typology of four argumentation dialogues (information-seeking, inquiry, discovery, persuasion). We applied the resulting pragmatic framework to teacher-student interactions found in 20 transcripts of both science and social sciences secondary education lessons. We found that affordances for these four types of dialogues were also present in teacher-student discourse, where the implied argumentation goal was not fulfilled. We discuss these findings in terms of the need to be able to identify the dialogic potentiality and accountability within teacher-student interactions so that the argumentative potential of these interactions can be fulfilled, resulting in productive classroom discourse within secondary education classroom settings.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100352
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalLearning, Culture and Social Interaction
Early online date25 Oct 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Argumentation
  • Classroom discourse
  • Dialogue types
  • Teacher-student interaction


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