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Unit 3: Foundations for Conducting Research

R27: Critical Discourse Analysis


This training will initially explore the methodological foundations of CDA demonstrating how this type of discourse–knowledge interface provides researchers with opportunities to embrace philosophical, linguistic, psychological, sociological and anthropological dimensions (Weiss and Wodak, 2003).

The term discourse is used within a variety of disciplines, and there are a number of different definitions, depending on the theoretical orientation of the researcher. Discourse can be broadly understood as ‘…that linguistic output, which is produced by human beings when they meet, chat, work and communicate in everyday life’ (Yates, 2006, p. 82).

Drawing on Fairclough’s (1992) Three-Dimensional Analysis of discourse, this training will draw on research from trainee social workers in Wales to illustrate the application of the methodology in exploring the construction of professional identity.

In exploring, explaining and applying a textual analysis, this training shows how to use a seven-dimensional analysis to text/s by exploring the accounts of trainee social workers. The concept of text refers to ‘text-in-situation’, that is, an account, speech act, exchange, episode or narrative (Halliday 1978).

Demonstrating how CDA methods provides opportunities for researchers to recontextualise the ground floor narratives of routinized talk in occupational cultures, the training concludes with exploring how these ideas can be used in other domains such as teaching, management, health professions and wider.  

Facilitator: Dr Karen Roscoe, Faculty of Education, Health & Wellbeing (FEHW)


Vitae RDF descriptors addressed in this session are:

Knowledge and intellectual abilities (A)
This domain contains the knowledge and intellectual abilities needed to be able to carry out excellent research.

  • Knowledge base (A1)
  • Cognitive abilities (A2)