Projecting a relevant "next": Instruction sequences in driving lessons

Gazin, Anne-Danièle; De Stefani, Elwys (2011). Projecting a relevant "next": Instruction sequences in driving lessons. In: IIEMCA Conference: panel 9: Multimodal responses to verbal first pair parts. Fribourg. 10.-14.07.2011.

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Car interaction and the organisation of multi-activity in cars have become a fertile
topic of research within CA and EM (Laurier 2005, Haddington & Keisanen 2009).
While previous research has focused exclusively on everyday car rides, in this paper
we will analyse a specific kind of car interaction, namely driving lessons. In addition
to"driving" and"talking", as the two main parallel activities in everyday car rides
(Mondada in press), in driving lessons a central activity is"instructing", that we
understand to be a collaborative accomplishment (Sanchez Svensson et al. 2009).
Drawing on a corpus of 7 video-recorded driving lessons, we will analyse the sequential
organisation of"instruction sequences", i.e. of those actions that are initiated by the
driving instructor with a turn projecting the next relevant action to be executed by the
learner. Learners carry out next actions in two different ways: a) as"single" actions
(e.g. using the indicator); b) as a complex series of overlapping or parallel actions.
We will show that"single" actions occur as responses to instructions concerning
the learner's command of the car, while complex actions occur when the instructors
formulate direction indications. The aims of our analyses are twofold. Firstly, we will
analyse how instruction sequences are fitted to the emerging contingencies of the
car ride (movement in space, changing environment): we will show that a) the turn
format of the instruction initiation displays the degree of"urgency" of the requested
action; b) learners have the possibility to start the relevant"next" before the instruction
initiation comes to completion. Secondly, we will focus on those"seconds" that the
driving instructor treats as problematic by initiating a repair sequence (e.g. an improper
use of the indicator). Our research contributes to the discussion about the multimodal
resources that participants can employ to fulfil a projected action. In addition, it offers
insights in a hitherto scarcely investigated topic, namely the organisation of instructions
and the ecology of apprenticeship.
HADDINGTON, P. & KEISANEN, T. (2009) Location, mobility and the body as resources in selecting a route. Journal
of Pragmatics 41 (10), 1938-1961.
LAURIER, Eric (2005): Searching for a parking space. Intellectica 41-42/2-3: 101-116.
MONDADA, Lorenza (in press). Talking and driving: multi-activity in the car. Semiotica.
SANCHEZ SVENSSON, M. et al. (2009) "Embedding instruction in practice: contingency and collaboration during
surgical training", Sociology of Health & Illness, 31/6: 889-906.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of Linguistics and Literary Studies > Institute of Italian Language and Literature > Linguistic Studies

UniBE Contributor:

Gazin, Anne-Danièle and De Stefani, Elwys


400 Language > 450 Italian, Romanian & related languages




Susanne Lachat

Date Deposited:

05 Sep 2014 16:18

Last Modified:

05 Sep 2014 16:18


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