This paper outlines developments in genre theory and pedagogy
from an Australian perspective although we are very much aware of
the significant work done elsewhere in the world in recent years. Our
experience lies predominantly with English language and literacy
education in Australian schools and in teacher education settings. In
this paper, we describe the provenance and development of genre
theory and the functional view of language as relevant to our context.
We outline the current state of Australian curriculum after more than
30 years of genre research and application, identifying a number of
significant achievements made possible by the earlier work of linguists
and educationists. Then, we discuss the pedagogic approach
to language and literacy associated with genre, with particular emphasis
on characteristics such as the dialogic basis of learning and the
notion of ‘handover’. We conclude by identifying issues for teacher
professional learning and curriculum resources.