From Aha Moments to Ethnomethodology: A Conversation with Hugh Mehan

Tadic, Nadja; Yu, Li

On April 1, 2015, Professor Hansun Waring’s doctoral seminar had the great pleasure and honor of being joined over Skype by Dr. Hugh (Bud) Mehan, Professor Emeritus at the University of California, San Diego and author of the 1979 classic Learning Lesson: Social Organization in the Classroom. Dr. Mehan has done extensive research on classroom organization and interaction, educational testing, tracking and untracking, construction of student identities in the classroom, and so on. He has managed to achieve the delicate and yet crucial balance that so many educators and education researchers aspire to—the balance between doing research and improving the world. He has not only shaped the academic discourse on education issues but has been directly working with the most vulnerable members of our society in overcoming and amending those issues. His work has been an inspiration to so many of us whose research passions and real-life concerns lie in education, classroom interaction, and social inequity.

The Skype meeting was proposed as a continuation of conversation inspired by Dr. Mehan’s invigorating invited lecture at the 4th Annual LANSI Conference at Teachers College in October 2014. Members of Dr. Waring’s Spring 2015 seminar (Nancy Boblett, Catherine Box, Sarah Creider, Donna Delprete, Rong Rong Le, Heidi Liu, Carol Lo, Saerhim Oh, Elizabeth Reddington, Gahye Song, Nadja Tadic, Junko Takahashi, and Di Yu) compiled a list of questions for Dr. Mehan in advance and asked follow-up questions to his responses during the meeting. We are very pleased to share with our journal readers a transcript of our conversation, and we hope you will find his words as inspiring and illuminating as we have.


Also Published In

Working Papers in Applied Linguistics & TESOL

More About This Work

Academic Units
Applied Linguistics and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
Published Here
January 23, 2018