The role of semiotic regulators in the construction and execution of an argumentative instructional design

  • Gabriel Fortes Cavalcanti de Macêdo Universidad Alberto Hurtado
  • Nancy Lizeth Ramírez Roncancio
  • Selma Leitão


This article investigates how the semiotic tools socially shared have a role in psychological development of students enrolled in argumentative classes. The process of internalization is understood as a form of semiotic regulation, socially shared, that benefits the organization and structuring of higher mental functions. We use an argumentative instructional design inspired by the adaptation made by Leitão (2012) to the Critical Debate Model / MDC (Fuentes, 2011) to create an environment of systematic argumentation as a mediation resource for the development of reflective thinking of students. In each cycle (5 debates), the students (38) are divided into three groups, who rotate to assume the roles of protagonists, antagonistics and judges/researchers – in every cycle there are activities to teach how to argue and argue to learn school content. Hence, they are systematically stimulated to exchange points of view rationally, evaluate arguments, question positions, produce arguments and anticipate counter-arguments. The workshop where teachers stimulated the teaching of argumentation for the purpose of developing argumentative competencies were qualitatively analyzed. The semiotic-discursive analysis of 12 cases (one of the three groups) indicates that there are three levels of regulatory agents: 1) the design, 2) the instruction of the teachers, 3) the reaction (understanding) of the students. And the regulators are divided into the dimensions of knowledge construction and pragmatic / rhetoric of the argument organized in: 1) macroregulators, which say of the general regulators present in the design and instruction and 2) local regulators, who say respect of the updated use of general regulators internally by students. Finally, it is proposed to think about the role of constructing argumentative class designs that take into account the complexity of semiotic dynamics in educational contexts.

How to Cite
DE MACÊDO, Gabriel Fortes Cavalcanti; RAMÍREZ RONCANCIO, Nancy Lizeth; LEITÃO, Selma. The role of semiotic regulators in the construction and execution of an argumentative instructional design. Cogency, [S.l.], v. 11, n. 1-2, feb. 2020. ISSN 0718-8285. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 27 feb. 2020. doi: