Dialogical Thematic Analysis of Conversation in Tutors Forums online

  • Claristina Borges da Silva
Keywords: e-learning, tutoring, identity, self-dialogic.


In order to increase the performance of universities, the use of virtual learning environments in the training and qualification of teachers has been promoted by several educational institutions with a view to new forms of organization of the educational space. In the form e-learning, the mediator activity of the tutor in the forums provides new and meaningful reflections on the way of learning and the role of the teacher, whose performance is based on competencies as moderator or facilitator.

This work presents the Dialogical Thematic Analysis of Conversation technique as a method of analyzing four topics of a forum specially created for research purposes in a virtual learning environment and aims to analyze the concepts of self-positioning, identification and identity of online tutors in postgraduate course, through dialogic interactions. The dialogue between these concepts allowed to identify the tutor’s perceptions about the competences required by the new learning culture resulting from the development of digital technologies that modify the traditional roles of teacher. Through the interactions in the forum, the positions of four tutors were analyzed to identify the representations and meanings of self and others in the production of knowledge. Through personal and professional examination of their profiles, the researcher sought to know their trajectories, qualifications, experiences and expectations in order to verifying how they perceived themselves acting as tutors, their identification with the course and how their position outlined their identity. This research was based on theories that guide Cultural Psychology Self-Theories and Positioning Theories, and the dialogical perspective

The Dialogical Thematic Analysis of the Conversation, used by the Thought and Culture research group of Ágora Psyché Laboratory of the Department of Psychology of the University of Brasília, presents itself as a method of verbal data analysis in qualitative research structured according to the following procedures: interview, transcript of interviews; definition of the analytical unit; intensive reading of transcribed material; organization of statements in themes and subtopics (analysis of recurrences, relationships and similarities of meanings in testimonials); elaboration and analysis of semiotic maps. According to the presuppositions of Bakhtinian dialogism, in the dialogical thematic analysis, the statements are taken as analytical units. In this research were analyzed the statements of the forum comprising them as the slogans, theme proposed by the researcher to start a discussion in the forum as well as the answers and / or propositions of the others. The author of the research added epigenetic perspective to the method of dialogical thematic analysis considering the factors of heterogeneity, equifinality and multifinality.

Thus, according to the principle of responsiveness, the positions of the self of the tutors were identified through the alternation of the speakers, allowing the analysis of their identities as tutors through their self-perceptions.