Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Language Teaching Research






This article explores how a primary school teacher utilized the frameworks of dynamic assessment (DA) and the instructional conversation (IC) within a Spanish as a foreign language classroom. DA was used to construct zones of proximal development with individuals in the classroom context. A menu of pre-scripted assisting prompts, used to respond to predictable lexical and grammatical errors, permitted the teacher to assess students while also promoting development. ICs were used to co-construct a group zone of proximal development (ZPD) in response to less predictable student errors or inquiries. The flexible mediation provided by the teacher in these instances allowed for the active involvement of more students as well as more responsive dialogue. This language teacher drew upon these two frameworks to navigate dual goals of instruction and assessment while providing mediation attuned to the ZPD of the learners. As students studied interrogative formation to complete the pedagogical task of an interview, the teacher alternated between these two frameworks based on her goal for each interaction. Class transcripts are analysed to reveal how these two complementary frameworks can be used in conjunction to meet both the students’ and teacher’s needs.




Author Posting. © Kristin Davin, 2013. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Sage for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Language Teaching Research, 17,3, 2013.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

Included in

Education Commons