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Nursing handovers as unbounded and scalar events

Bartlett, Thomas ORCID:, Ylanne, Virpi ORCID:, Spilioti, Tereza ORCID: and Aldridge-Waddon, Michelle ORCID: 2020. Nursing handovers as unbounded and scalar events. Applied Linguistics Review 12 (3) , pp. 401-418. 10.1515/applirev-2019-0135

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In this paper we analyse data from nursing handover meetings in terms of the interplay of different voices that operate at different interactional and institutional scales. We suggest, firstly, that the handover is not a single bounded event, as suggested in previous literature, but rather a gradual moving in and out of focus of a particular discourse activity; and, secondly, that while different phases within the handover as an extended event are characterised by voices operating at a specific scale, there are continuous movements between scales in each phase. This leads us to suggest two categories of rescaling as an activity: translational rescalings, as the handover shifts between phases and from one scale to another, and digressive scales, in which the scale of interaction that typifies a specific phase is temporarily interrupted by another. We illustrate how both these categories serve important revoicing functions and, on the basis of this analysis, extend the use of scales theory in interactional linguistics through the addition of dynamic systems theory and a-curve distributions, in which 20% of token types predominate, while the remainder, or tail, perform essential complementary activities that over time can open up space for gradual shifts in the characteristics and overall function of the activity itself.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: English, Communication and Philosophy
Publisher: de Gruyter
ISSN: 1868-6311
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 21 January 2020
Date of Acceptance: 23 October 2019
Last Modified: 08 Nov 2023 04:28

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