Responding (or not) to other’s talk
Changes in recipiency practices during a Japanese study abroad program
This study follows Ishida’s (2017) call for longitudinal studies that examine how learners in the early stages of their study abroad sojourn develop skills in responding to prior talk. Using multimodal Conversation Analysis (CA), the study compares three interactions across a six-week sojourn between a learner of Japanese and his host father. For longitudinal comparison, the study focuses on sequences in which the learner has initiated a question or comment, and the host father provides a non-minimal response. The study finds a diversification of resources and an expanded repertoire of possible actions for displaying recipiency, changing from primarily minimal response tokens that only weakly display his stance towards the prior talk early on, to the greater use of assessments and non-minimal expansions toward the end of the sojourn. The study provides evidence that short-term study abroad experiences for novice languages learners can afford opportunities for the development of interactional competencies.