Constructing identities in informal study groups: An account of socialisation into an affinity group of learners
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This paper demonstrates how members of a first-year university informal study group construct positive university student identities. A focus group interview with six students is analysed on the theoretical premise that identity is an interactional achievement that changes as the interaction proceeds. The analysis shows how, at various times during the interview, the members of the study group display aspects of four types of identities: nature identity, institution identity, discourse identity, and affinity identity (Gee, 2000/1). Methodologically, these identities are located through discourse analysis that shows how the speakers build up their identities through the linguistic and paralinguistic features of their talk and that these identities contribute to the students' perceptions and practices of their success at university. A deeper understanding of how student identities are constituted through informal study groups has the potential to maintain and extend formal learning that takes place during lectures and tutorials
Educating: Weaving Research into Practice
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