When working on pragmatics an effective instructional strategy is to videotape a face-to-face conversation. Students can participate in various interactions, with different foci and intentions and with different partners, including hearing partners who do not sign. Using two cameras, a split screen videotape can be produced for subsequent viewing and evaluation with the student.
The split-screen videotape allows analysis of the behavior of both participants. The videotaping can be done at an angle that facilitates speech reading for subsequent review and analysis. In this segment, an instructor views a video and identifies areas for improvement.
As a professional development activity, colleagues may view the tapes together and share observations and insights.
For a context, view the conversational model discussed in the assessment section.
Students can learn different phrases they can use in order to employ turn-taking and involve their partner in the conversation. It is beneficial when students can experience creating a balance between the speaker and listener roles.
Students learn about the importance of contingent responses and then can attempt to use that type of response during their videotaped interaction
Articulation errors that emerge in the context of a videotaped conversation can be easily captured and highlighted and then practiced during subsequent classes.
Semantic and syntactic errors are easily captured in a videotaped interaction. The student and the instructor can then analyze and discuss the intent and the language used.
Students are taught about the importance of using comments to expand a topic in a conversation. Utilizing effective clarification strategies can help in meeting the conversational partner’s informational needs. The use of such strategies can be easily highlighted when reviewing the videotaped conversation.
Asking appropriate questions requires analysis of different factors including who is your conversational partner. The context of the conversation and cultural factors should also be considered. These concepts can be discussed with the student when the tape is reviewed. The closing of a conversation is the final part of the conversation and may need to be reviewed with the student.