Learners’ Engagement in Meaning Negotiation and Classroom Interaction as a Function of Their Perceptions of Teachers’ Instructional Communicative Behaviors

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Kharazmi University

2 Imam Khomeini International University

3 Ministry of Education


A significant share of classroom interaction occurs between teachers and language learners. Therefore, the individual characteristics of teachers could play facilitative or impeding roles thus encouraging or discouraging learners from getting engaged in interaction and meaning negotiation attempts when interacting with their teachers. Surprisingly however, this area has attracted scant attention. Therefore, this study aimed at exploring students’ perceptions of their teachers’ socio-communicative style and nonverbal immediacy in relation to their engagement in classroom teacher-learner interaction and frequency of meaning negotiation attempts in their interactions. To this aim, 72 students were randomly assigned to six classes of 12 taught by six teachers. Richmond, McCroskey and Johnson’s (2003) nonverbal immediacy scale and McCroskey and Richmond’s (1996) socio-communicative style scale were administered to students to tap into their perceptions of these two qualities of their teachers. Then the total amount of time the students were engaged in active interaction with the teachers and the number of meaning negotiation attempts employed by them were computed. The results of Correlations and Regression Analyses revealed significant relationships between teacher nonverbal immediacy, the two dimensions of socio-communicative style (Assertiveness and Responsiveness) and the students’ willingness to engage in interaction and meaning negotiation with their teachers.


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