Summary of Group VII discussion

This was a highly co-operative discussion. There was less disparity between length and number of turns than in other discussions in the sample, and there was a relatively high frequency of back channel support, which was distributed between all speakers. Questions were used to dissolve the potential hierarchy created by naming G14 as the chairperson, to open out topics, and as hedges. The speakers were very sensitive to areas that were potentially sites for conflict in their use of hedges and epistemic modal forms. Topics were jointly developed and there was a considerable degree of joint turn construction. Lexical repetition was constant and there was a considerable amount of co-operative overlapping speech. This was a strikingly more co-operative discussion than any of the others in the sample.

G14 was co-operative within this discussion - she participated to the same extent as the other two speakers in the co-operative features analysed above. She also used linguistic features to undermine the authority which comes with the role of chairperson.

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