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Multimodal discourse analysis
Teacher recruitment videos
Ng, W. Q. J., & Teo, C. S. P. (2015). “Every teacher, a caring educator”: A multimodal discourse analysis of a teacher recruitment video in Singapore. Multimodal Communication, 4(1), 15-29. https://doi.org/10.1515/mc-2015-0003
Videos are increasingly being used by organizations and corporations all over the world, both private and public, as an effective mode of communication to purvey their goods and services. One such organization is Singapore’s Ministry of Education (MOE), which has produced a series of video advertisements aimed at teacher recruitment. As official discourses, they represent one channel through which the MOE constructs and articulates its ideals and expectations of the teaching profession in Singapore. In recent years, the focus of the video advertisements has been on the “caring teacher.” This study aims to uncover the ideologies surrounding the construction of the caring teacher by investigating how teacher identity and agency are articulated through a teacher recruitment video. A multimodal discourse framework (Baldry and Thibault 2006) is adopted to unpack the different meanings expressed in and through the MOE’s 2011 teacher recruitment video. A macroanalysis drawing on the phasal analysis framework (Baldry and Thibault 2006) and the visual semantics stratum (Lim 2007) is first carried out. This is followed by a microanalysis drawing on Halliday and Matthiessen’s (2004) systemic-functional model and Kress and van Leeuwen’s (2006) visual analysis framework. The caring teacher is revealed as one whose role and identity are explicitly student-centric, although the impact of her actions on the student is unclear. Questions are also raised on the blurring of the teacher’s professional and personal identities and the practicality of teachers displaying such attributes as embodied in the video.
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