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Conversation Analysis

  • By: Wayne A. Beach
  • In: Encyclopedia of Health Communication
  • Edited by: Teresa L. Thompson
  • Subject:Public Health Education & Health Promotion, Health Psychology, Health Communication

Conversation analysis (CA) is utilized by researchers to closely analyze audio and video recordings, in unison with carefully produced transcriptions, to reveal the ordinary and recurrent practices used by speakers to organize a vast array of social actions that constitute everyday living (e.g., questions and answers, agreements and disagreements, repairs, misunderstandings, invitations, acceptances, rejections, offers, complaints, compliments, storytelling, accusations, excuses, denials, and emotional and affective displays). Systematic and detailed attention is given to how co-participants design their turns at talk, and how during face-to-face interactions make available distinct bodily orientations (e.g., gaze, gesture, facial expressions) as resources for demonstrating specific kinds of understanding as interactions unfold. As a method and grounded theoretical framework for studying naturally occurring social interactions, a primary focus of CA is ...

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