Language and Societies

ANT/LIN 5320 at Wayne State University

A Community of Practice and Constructing Children’s Agency

A Community of Practice and Constructing Children’s Agency
Kimberly A. Compton

This study examines how parents of children with special needs discuss their children in an online setting. Specifically, this study coded and analyzed parent reports for 31 children participating in a larger study of an alternative therapy for a presumed micronutrient deficiency. The reports suggest that among this group of parents, a community of practice has emerged. The analysis also found a prominent discourse among the reports, which is identified as the Continuum of Uncertainty. This discourse encompassed responses that ranged from comments that expressed a great hope for their child’s progress to statements that expressed a significant degree of uncertainty as to how their child’s life would proceed. Although the reports are arranged in a manner that resembles the routine documentation of medical records, parents frequently maintained a biographical format in their reports which contributed to the construction of their children’s agency.

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April 15, 2013 - Posted by | abstract

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