Today at Tower Hamlets College we launched the Power of Discussion (POD) research project. The research, funded by the British Council’s ESOL Nexus Project, will investigate the impact lots of discussion has on language development. We want to find out what makes a good discussion, what topics provoke most interest, what teachers can do with the language students produce and how students feel during discussions. We will compare the language students are using at the beginning of the six weeks, and the langaueg they are expected to use at Entry 2, with the language they produce at the end. The class will use social media to engage the world outside of the classroom. They will contact groups and individuals, concerned with the topics they have discussed, to share their opinions and get some dialogue going. Today, we presented the project to the group. The words power, discussion, research were not too difficult for the students to get to grips with. However students were less familiar with blogs and Twitter. Only one of 13 students used Twitter in fact. The were really excited about the technological element of the project though and looking forward to blogging and tweeting. The nascent blog can be found here: http://thepowerofdiscussion.wordpress.com/.