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A Semiotic Study of Signs Used in a Swedish Primary School.
Halmstad University.
2016 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Semiotics and the concept of signs can be used to analyse the signs that can be found in a Swedish primary school in order to understand and expand our understanding of the role of signifiers, including cultural ones, in child education. The study identifies what signs can be found, what purpose they have and what category of sign they belong to, whether they are signs as defined by Saussure, how they might be categorized within Peirce‘s triadic typology and, applying Barthes’ notion of cultural signification, the extent to which they contribute to maintaining and promoting a school’s identity and values. In order to analyse the signs, a Swedish public primary school located in Halmstad was visited and the visible signs were photographed and catalogued. In order to confirm the intentions behind the design and meaning of signs, an interview with a senior teacher was arranged. The result, and signs, that were documented and described; these included drawings, emergency escape signs, posters, diplomas and other instructions with picture or sign language representations. The signs were categorized and analysed using semiotic theories of signs suggested by Saussure, Peirce and Barthes. The study facilitates a clearer understanding of the range of functions of signs in schools, both for practical purposes and as signifiers of culture and identity, and also highlights the possible applications and limitations of using semiotic theories in investigating generated meanings in physical locations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 67 p.
Keyword [en]
Semiotics, Signs, Saussure, Peirce, Cultural Myths, Barthes, Swedish Primary School
National Category
Humanities Languages and Literature
URN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-30589OAI: diva2:914960
Subject / course
Available from: 2016-04-28 Created: 2016-03-28 Last updated: 2016-04-28Bibliographically approved

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