Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)


Education and Human Development

First Advisor

Sue Robb


This study investigates what kinds of talk students engage in during a Literature Circle with assigned roles. Participants were asked in an interview which type of discussion they preferred (Literature Circles or Whole Group) and why they preferred one type of discussion to the other. Data were collected through the use of semi-structured interviews, audio recordings, and observations. These data were collected and analyzed using a constant comparison method. Results of the study showed that students preferred Literature Circles rather than whole group discussion and that student talk varies in a Literature Circle discussions ranging from content-based talk and off task discussions. The four focal group students demonstrated a need to feel comfortable in their learning environment and the need for time to share their thoughts and ideas about the Literature they were reading.