The Functions of Negotiation of Meaning in Text-Based CMC

The Functions of Negotiation of Meaning in Text-Based CMC

Sedat Akayoglu (Middle East Technical University, Turkey) and Arif Altun (Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-994-6.ch018
OnDemand PDF Download:


This chapter aims at describing the patterns of negotiation of meaning functions in text-based synchronous computer-mediated communication by using computer-mediated discourse analysis. Two research questions were sought in this study: (a) what types of negotiation of meaning emerge in text-based synchronous CMC environments, and (b) is there any difference between native speakers (NSs) and nonnative speakers (NNSs) of English in terms of negotiations of meaning functions in this environment. The emerged functions of meaning negotiation were presented, and when comparing the NS with NNSs, the most frequently used negotiation of meaning functions were found to be different, but the least frequently used ones were found to be similar. The findings of this study might give insights to researchers, educators, and teachers of English Language when designing instruction in terms of patterns of negotiation of meaning functions in text-based synchronous computer-mediated communication.
Chapter Preview


With the substantial developments in computer and communication technologies, educators and researchers are challenged in integrating these tools into the learning and teaching processes. The invention of the Internet paved the way for educators and researchers to create virtual communities of learners in virtual meeting spaces.

The idea of creating new environments is grounded on the theory of social constructivism. According to social constructivism theory, learners should take part in different contexts; they should interact with different people around them to apply what they have learned at school (Doolittle, 1999; Salter, 2000, Johnson, 2001). Moreover, learners construct their knowledge by combining their prior knowledge with new information, according to the social constructivists. In other words, it can be claimed that when learners enter a different context, they combine the knowledge which they received at school and at home with that which they come across in this new context. The Internet provides these contexts, these environments, for the learners. When an individual connects to the Internet, he or she has the chance to meet someone by means of computer-mediated communication tools.

Computer-Mediated Communication

Computer-mediated communication (CMC) is any form of communication between two or more individuals who interact and/or influence each other via separate computers through the Internet or a network connection, using social software. The computer is the medium for the communication, and people around the world communicate with each other regardless of the time and place. Kiesler, Zubrow, and Moses (1985) mentioned the importance of the computer as a medium of communication 20 years ago and stated that it would become a very important development in communication as follows:

Just as the telephone and the automobile did, modern computing technologies seem likely to have major effects on patterns of social contact. People are using computer networks for communicating through electronic mail, computer bulletin boards, asynchronous computer conferencing, instantaneous document facsimile production, and online simultaneous conversations. Computers used for communication will be a significant technological development over the coming decades, and it seems sensible to study the underlying psychological and social implications of this development. (Kiesler et al., 1985, pp. 78-79)

As Olaniran (1996) states, computer-mediated communication has gained more popularity among organizations to promote group communication through available communication tools, such as electronic mail, voicemail, and videoconferencing. Moreover, Olaniran (1996) goes further to add that teleconferencing, which enables synchronous communication, is an increasingly demanded feature by organizations.

Until recently, researchers have been interested in the outcome of this interaction as to whether the interaction leads to learning or not. Among the most frequently raised questions are to find out the results of instruction using computers and the Internet as language learners interact in new contexts with new events, objects, and people. According to Chappelle (2004, p. 595), there is an emerging need to understand the context of interaction, which may or may not lead to learning. Therefore, she adds, there is a need for “‘ethnographic and discourse-analytic methods’ with an emphasis on the broader context in which the learning takes place…” to find the patterns on the Net. Chappelle (2004) goes further to urge researchers to analyze the context of these environments in order to provide teachers with a better understanding of their learners.

Research about the linguistic perspective of the Internet environments includes different aspects of the languages such as speech acts (Crystal, 2001; Oliver, 2002), negotiation of meaning (Warschauer, 1998; Sotillo, 2000; Rapaport, 2003; Bitchener, 2004; Jepson, 2005, Patterson & Trabaldo, 2006), and question types (Leahy, 2001; Schweinhorst, 2004).

The content of the CMC environments in both synchronous and asynchronous areas has also been a major focus of research (i.e., Stevens & Altun, 2002; Mercer, Littleton, & Wegerif, 2004). Researchers explored what the learners were talking about, and they attempted to categorize the outcomes of these CMC environments in terms of their content. The other dimension of the research related to CMC is comparing the interaction styles in face-to-face settings and in the Internet environments (i.e., Warschauer, 1996; Olaniran, 1996; Sassenberg, Boos, & Rabung, 2005; An & Frick, 2006).

Complete Chapter List

Search this Book:
Editorial Advisory Board
List of Reviewers
Table of Contents
Norbert Pachler
Rita de Cássia Veiga Marriott, Patricia Lupion Torres
Rita de Cássia Veiga Marriott, Patricia Lupion Torres
Chapter 1
Pascual Pérez-Paredes, Maria Sánchez-Tornel
The research we report is a pilot study carried to test English as a Foreign Language (EFL) students’ reception of an electronic foreign language... Sample PDF
Understanding E-Skills in the FLT Context
Chapter 2
Antônio Carlos Soares Martins, Junia de Carvalho Fidelis Braga
The discussions presented herein emerged from two empirical studies in progress:“Online Learning Communities in the Realm of Complexity” and “The... Sample PDF
The Emergence of Social Presence in Learning Communities
Chapter 3
CALL as Action  (pages 39-52)
Vilson J. Leffa
The objective of this chapter is to offer a new approach for research in Computer-Assisted Language Learning (CALL). It starts with the assumption... Sample PDF
CALL as Action
Chapter 4
Vera Lucia Menezes de Oliveira e Paiva, Adail Sebastiao Rodrigues-Junior
This pedagogical and methodological chapter aims at contributing to increasing Web teachers’ awareness of the different ways teachers and students... Sample PDF
Investigating Interaction in an EFL Online Environment
Chapter 5
Euline Cutrim Schmid
This chapter discusses the concept of integrated CALL by drawing upon data collected for a PhD research project that investigated the impact of... Sample PDF
Interactive Whiteboards and the Normalization of CALL
Chapter 6
Alexandra Okada
This chapter presents new methodologies designed to facilitate language acquisition in open learning communities via open educational resources and... Sample PDF
OpenLearn and Knowledge Maps for Language Learning
Chapter 7
Ria Hanewald
This chapter provides an overview of the field of digital objects and repositories. It introduces the concepts of digital objects and repositories... Sample PDF
Learning Objects: Projects, Potentials, and Pitfalls
Chapter 8
Patrica Lupion Torres, Rita de Cassia Veiga Marriott, Andreia Ferreira Ramos
This chapter presents the experience of production and use of learning objects (LOs) for English-language learning at the Pontificia Universidade... Sample PDF
English-Language Teaching with Learning Objects at PUCPR
Chapter 9
Zhuo Li, Feng Liu, Jeff Boyer
The purpose of this chapter is to investigate the present use of e-gaming in language acquisition along with its potential and challenges. We review... Sample PDF
Amusing Minds for Joyful Learning through E-Gaming
Chapter 10
Jowati Juhary
This chapter analyses the challenges in adapting a non-language learning courseware (NLLC) for a military learning environment. The National Defense... Sample PDF
A Non-Language Learning Courseware and its Challenges
Chapter 11
Marcus Vinicius dos Santos, Isaac Woungang, Moses Nyongwa
The increasing importance of e-learning has been a boosting element for the emergence of Internet-based educational tools. As we move into the... Sample PDF
A Pliant-Based Software Tool for Courseware Development
Chapter 12
Aysegül Daloglu, Meltem Baturay, Soner Yildirim
This chapter outlines how the constructivist approach can be implemented in Web-based vocabulary teaching, characteristics of effective Web-based... Sample PDF
Designing a Constructivist Vocabulary Learning Material
Chapter 13
Yasunori Nishina
This chapter suggests an effective method for lexical studies using Moodle within the framework of data-driven learning based on parallel... Sample PDF
A Lexical Study Based on Corpora, DDL, and Moodle
Chapter 14
Vander Viana, Sonia Zyngier
Like the advent of the telescope, computers today can provide ways of looking into language patterns that cannot be seen with the naked eye. From... Sample PDF
EFL through the Digital Glass of Corpus Linguistics
Chapter 15
Jing Wang
This chapter introduces a series of studies carried out with intermediate learners of Chinese regarding the reading of authentic e-materials with... Sample PDF
Electronic Strategies to Improve Chinese Reading Skills
Chapter 16
Margaret Murphy, Cristina Poyatos Matas
This chapter argues that politeness is an important component of e-mail language. Many people are uncertain about how to make their e-mail polite... Sample PDF
Politeness in Intercultural E-Mail Communication
Chapter 17
Neny Isharyanti
Studies in computer-mediated communication (CMC) have shown that it has the potential to provide opportunities for ESL learners to actively... Sample PDF
Interactional Modifications in Internet Chatting
Chapter 18
Sedat Akayoglu, Arif Altun
This chapter aims at describing the patterns of negotiation of meaning functions in text-based synchronous computer-mediated communication by using... Sample PDF
The Functions of Negotiation of Meaning in Text-Based CMC
Chapter 19
Esrom Adriano Irala, Patrica Lupion Torres
This chapter belongs to the context of the computer-mediated communication (CMC) for language teaching and learning. Since the introduction of this... Sample PDF
The Use of the CMC Tool AMANDA in the Teaching of English
Chapter 20
Christine Rosalia, Lorena Llosa
This chapter reports on an instrument that was developed to formatively assess the quality of feedback that second language students give to one... Sample PDF
Assessing the Quality of Online Peer Feedback in L2 Writing
Chapter 21
Betty Rose Facer, M’hammed Abdous, Margaret M. Camarena
As part of an initiative to enhance the humanities’ use of emerging technologies, the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at Old... Sample PDF
The Impact of Academic Podcasting on Students' Learning Outcomes
Chapter 22
Mahieddine Djoudi
The use of the mobile devices in language learning has been developed at a very high speed in the last years. Thus, we are witnessing many research... Sample PDF
Listening Comprehension of Languages with Mobile Devices
Chapter 23
Huw Jarvis
This chapter reports on a quantitative study that examines how language students make use of an extensive range of computer-based materials (CBMs)... Sample PDF
Computers and Independent Study: Student Perspectives
Chapter 24
Renata Chylinski, Ria Hanewald
This chapter reports on a study undertaken on the impact of pedagogical and technological innovations in language teaching and language learning... Sample PDF
Creating Supportive Environments for CALL Teacher Autonomy
Chapter 25
Mar Gutiérrez-Colon Plana
Many language teachers, students, and institutions of virtual learning environments are well acquainted with the feelings of loneliness and... Sample PDF
Frustration in Virtual Learning Environments
Chapter 26
Sarah Guth, Corrado Petrucco
This chapter describes how the social software tools that characterize Web 2.0, such as wikis and blogs, can be used as a valid substitute for more... Sample PDF
Social Software and Language Acquisition
Chapter 27
Bryan Carter, Dayton Elseth
Within academia, distance learning as an approach to education has its share of skeptics. Regardless of how some feel about the methodology, it has... Sample PDF
The Usefulness of Second Life for Language Learning
Chapter 28
Irene Mamakou
Interest in the integration of language learning with knowledge/content construction is growing around the world. In this line, an instructional... Sample PDF
Project-Based Instruction for ESP in Higher Education
Chapter 29
Ma Camino Bueno Alastuey
The adaptation to the European Space of Higher Education and to the new demands of the labor market has produced a shift in university education... Sample PDF
WebCT Design and Users' Perceptions in English for Agriculture
Chapter 30
Heli Simon, Päivö Laine, Ann Seppänen, Ana Barata, Carlos Vaz de Carvalho
This chapter presents the tutoring methodology adopted in an e-learning language course for students in vocational training and higher education as... Sample PDF
The LAFEC Experience for Language Skills Acquisition
Chapter 31
Christian Swertz, Rosa Schultz, Katharina Toifl
This chapter reports the concept development and evaluation results from the project LANCELOT (LANguage learning with CErtified Live Online... Sample PDF
Language Teaching in Live Online Environments
Chapter 32
Astrid Gesche
This chapter provides a basis for thinking about the dynamics and boundaries of foreign language learning in virtual learning communities of the... Sample PDF
Adapting to Virtual Third-Space Language Learning Futures
Chapter 33
Chaka Chaka
This chapter explores aspects of portable handheld language learning that are likely to benefit many mobile assisted language learning (MALL)... Sample PDF
Portable Handheld Language Learning from CALL MALL to PALL
About the Contributors