As a phenomenon, discourse does not belong only to applied linguistics, although applied linguistics figures among the disciplines in which discourse is a central focus. For approximately the last three decades, applied linguists and scholars in allied disciplines have developed more detailed theoretical foundations, more sophisticated research techniques, and a wider range of applications for discourse analysis. Heterogeneity of theoretical perspectives, contexts of application, and research methods has been a hallmark of contemporary discourse research, as many of the volumes in the influential series Advances in Discourse Processes attest (see, for example, Tannen, 1988). Papers in the 1990 volume of the Annual Review of Applied Linguistics (Grabe, 1990) similarly testify to the already well-established variety of discourse analytic approaches and applications. The classroom has never been the only setting with which discourse analysts and applied linguists have concerned themselves, although educational applications of discourse analytic techniques have been common in North American scholarship ever since The Language of the Classroom (Bellack, Kliebard, Hyman, & Smith, 1966), Functions of Language in the Classroom (Cazden, John, & Hymes, 1972), and Towards an Analysis of Discourse (Sinclair & Coulthard, 1975). It remains a context of major consequence for many applied linguists because of their connection to the world of teaching practice and assessment. The theme of this year's volume, Discourse and Dialogue, revisits some of the topics discussed in these earlier volumes, adds some new areas of consideration, and captures some of the richness of recent discourse-related work.