Reversal of Participation Roles in NS-NNS Synchronous Telecollaboration


  • Rose van der Zwaard University of Amsterdam
  • Anne Bannink University of Amsterdam



Synchronous computer-mediated communication, second language acquisition, task-based language learning, telecollaboration


In this article we investigate data from digital interactions between native speaker (NS) and non-native speaker (NNS) dyads of English during synchronous computermediated communication. As opposed to most studies into the NS–NNS interface, we reversed the expert-learner participant roles: during the task performance, the NS was the (cultural) learner and the NNS the expert. Our aim was to observe the influence of these reversed participant categories on participant behavior and task performance, i.e., to see if NNS behavior as described in earlier studies also applies to the NSs in a similar apprentice position during a cross-cultural exchange, and vice versa. We found that, in both video calls and written chats, the NSs and NNSs behave in a similar manner when cast in both apprentice and learner roles. We conclude that, in task design and telecollaboration practice, the situated identities of the participants should be taken into account.

Author Biographies

  • Rose van der Zwaard, University of Amsterdam
    Rose van der Zwaard is a researcher and lecturer at the English Department of Amsterdam University. Her research area is digital interaction between native and non-native speakers in the second language academic classroom. She has been involved in and published on several cross-disciplinary telecollaboration projects.
  • Anne Bannink, University of Amsterdam
    Anne Bannink is an Associate Professor of Linguistics at the English Department of the University of Amsterdam. She has published papers in the fields of (critical) discourse analysis, second/foreign language acquisition, teacher education, and intercultural communication. She is the coordinator of the research group Institutional Discourse at the Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication.


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How to Cite

van der Zwaard, R., & Bannink, A. (2018). Reversal of Participation Roles in NS-NNS Synchronous Telecollaboration. CALICO Journal, 35(2), 162-181.