Reviewed by: Cheryl LaGuardia, Research Librarian, Widener Library, Harvard University
The focus and scope of Dialogic Pedagogy is laid out on the website in a four paragraph description that can be summarized as: it’s an “online open access journal [whose goal] is to advance international scholarship and pedagogical practice in the area of dialogic pedagogy.” The editors seek new articles (which they define as new in English -- “manuscripts previously published in other languages are fine for DPJ submission”) about “any scholarship and pedagogical practice, from educational researchers and practitioners, which values and gives priority to “dialogue” in learning/teaching across a wide range of institutional and non-institutional learning settings.”
In addition to articles (including “purely conceptual and/or methodological papers; ethnographic and empirical research with conceptual analysis and "thick descriptions;" description of and reflection on innovative dialogic educational practices; and “Special issue” – collection of thematically related papers”) the journal invites Commentaries on published articles, Scholarship Beyond Essaystic [sic] Texts (that is, “interviews, polemics and discussions, podcasts, brainstorming sessions, ficition (e.g. imaginary experiments), etc.), reviews of books, films and videos, conference presentations, websites, ethnographic materials (videos, audios, field notes and transcripts with fragment-by-fragment analysis and discussions), and reports on projects and conferences. The journal is “volume-organized” (except for “special issues” of a thematically related collection of articles), and all articles are published as soon as they are ready for publication, with each volume defined by the year of articles' publications.
The current issue available for review is volume 3, 2015, which includes the editorial, “Values in dialogic pedagogy,” by Eugene Matusov and Jay Lemke (which addresses November 2014 Facebook discussions (https://www.facebook.com/DialogicPedagogyJournal/posts/894734337204533, https://www.facebook.com/DialogicPedagogyJournal/posts/896916850319615about) about teaching values) and three articles: “Dialogic Multicultural Education Theory and Praxis: Dialogue and the Problems of Multicultural Education in a Pluralistic Society,” “Meeting youth in movement and on neutral ground,” and “Avoiding Dialogues of Non-discovery through Promoting Dialogues of Discovery,” with authors from the U.S., Denmark, and the UK. As the titles suggest, these are highly theoretical essays that discuss, at length, the use of dialogues in teaching.
The previous issue, volume 2, 2014, offers the editorial: “Dialogue on ‘Dialogic Education’: Has Rupert gone over to ‘the Dark Side’?,” described in its abstract thus: “This email dialogue that we record and report here between Eugene Matusov and Rupert Wegerif, exemplifies Internet mediated dialogic education. When Eugene emailed Rupert with his initial (mis)understanding of Rupert's position about dialogic pedagogy Rupert felt really motivated to reply. Rupert was not simply motivated to refute Eugene and assert his correctness, although Rupert is sure such elements enter into every dialogue, but also to explore and to try to resolve the issues ignited by the talk in New Zealand.” It is a classic academic exchange.
The 2014 issue also includes the three articles: “Forced Choices: Role Play and the Problem of Disappearing Syntax,” “Developing a model of pedagogical content knowledge for secondary and post-secondary mathematics instruction,” “Hip-Hop Hamlet: Hybrid Interpretive Discourse in a Suburban High School English Class;” a cluster of five Special Issue articles in a Dialogue on Dialogic Pedagogy (“A paradigmatic disagreement in "Dialogue on Dialogic Pedagogy," “Commentary on Eugene and Kiyo’s dialogue on dialogic pedagogy,” “Concluding Commentary: Response to Eugene and Kiyo,” and “A Response to Eugene and Kiyo’s Dialogue-Disagreement on Dialogic Pedagogy”); the Scholarship Beyond Essaystic Texts piece, “Education/obrazovanie as an experience of an encounter,” and the Review, “Epistemological Approaches to Dialogic Teaching in a Conventional Setting - Critical Review.”
In addition to being theoretical, material here is created by, and aimed at a small cadre of academics who know each other well and who engage in virtual dialogues continually. The journal seems to be yet another vehicle for them to talk to each other, and will likely be of interest to those in that cadre.