View Chapters

Book: Communication and Professional Relationships in Healthcare Practice

Chapter: 2.1 Introduction 2.2 Application of theory to professional discourse practice 2.3 Conversation analysis: a theory to give explanatory  value to the organisation of discourse 2.4 Summary

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.20466


The chapter explores the contribution that conversation analysis (CA) makes to our understanding of using discourse to achieve our goals. In this respect it examines the interactions between nurses and patients at various sites of engagement.

The idea of an increasing ‘discourse experience’ raises the question of how persons who engage with the health community for the first time come to know what these ‘rules’ are, and how they contribute to the smooth running of the system of the healthcare institution, and what the unwritten rules are for what is permissible or impermissible in health discourse. 

Considering the complexities of the discourse of the interlocutors and exploring the rule-governed nature of the interactions, the chapter has also analysed the discourse resources. 

Chapter Contributors

  • Sally Candlin ( - book-auth-689) 'Macquarie University'
  • Peter Roger ( - book-auth-690) 'Macquarie University'