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The Foundations of Dialogic teaching: linking theory and practice

Ms. Ramona Saraoru

An Overview

The Foundations of Dialogic Teaching course was inspired by Ramona’s passion for dialogue, and her PhD research, which seeks to understand teachers’ learning within a professional learning community. Dialogue is one of the concepts she considers in understanding teachers’ learning processes. Ramona had brought it all together in the Foundations of Dialogic Teaching course, which she presented for RAKTN during the 2022 autumn term. 

The course considered the success that Dialogic teaching offers students in their learning journey. The participants understood the dialogic concepts and were led through practical applications to build a strong basis for understanding dialogic teaching. Throughout all training sessions, the teachers also engaged in lectures, discussions, readings, and reflections on their practices using multimedia, such as applying dialogic principles in their teaching.

Photo: teachers providing examples of how they apply the dialogic teaching principles in their lessons

What research says about dialogic teaching

Researchers have reached a consensus about the power dialogic teaching has on students’ critical thinking and collaboration. Overall, if teachers use cognitively challenging classroom talk, this can lead to student gains of 2 additional months within an academic year. Specifically, by teaching dialogically, the teachers realise how students can achieve creative talk, understanding, and reasoning (Wegerif, 2010). Further an empirical study found that the effectiveness of dialogic teaching methods improved the students’ critical thinking dispositions and several elements of social interaction, such as knowing each other, friendship, responsibility, class dynamism, and interaction with teachers (Hajhosseiny, 2012). 

How to use the practice 

Ramona has based her teaching and training practice on the five principles of dialogic teaching: purposeful, cumulative, supportive, reciprocal and collaborative.  Her sessions are interactive, challenging the participants to explore their practices and use assessment for learning as a baseline to improve their teaching. 

She recommends that teachers first set ground rules for the dialogic talk so that the students understand the expectations. Then they must continuously reflect on their practices and align them to the dialogic principles discussed during the course.


Hajhosseiny, M., (2012) The Effect of Dialogic Teaching on Students’ Critical Thinking Disposition, Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences,Volume 69,Pages 1358-1368, ISSN 1877-0428,

Wegerif, R (2010)Mind Expanding : Teaching for Thinking and Creativity in Primary Education, McGraw-Hill Education,. ProQuest Ebook Central,

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