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Terminology in English Language Teaching

Nature and Use


Roger Berry

Based on original research and novel concepts, this book investigates the nature and use of terminology from linguistic and applied viewpoints. Throughout, problems with terminology, such as overuse by teachers and cases of synonymy and polysemy, are considered and solutions are offered.
Part One looks firstly at some basic concepts, then draws important distinctions between pedagogic and scientific terminology, and between transparent, opaque and iconic terms, before examining the historical, lexical and grammatical nature of terms.
Part Two attempts to estimate the value and relevance of terminology in language teaching and describes the use and knowledge of terminology in various language-teaching-related constituencies: learners, teachers, textbooks, grammars and research. It concludes with a discussion of the criteria for evaluating terms and an analysis of terms used in ELT.


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CHAPTER ELEVEN Grammatical terminology in textbooks


1. Introduction Another type of pedagogic material – probably the main one in most cases – where learners come into contact with terminology is the text- book. Textbooks, or coursebooks, are an almost universal feature of foreign language teaching in primary and especially secondary educa- tion. They come in many shapes and sizes; some attempt to integrate all four skills (speaking, listening, writing, reading) as well as perhaps different levels of language (grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation), while others concentrate on one skill (e.g. speaking) or one level (e.g. MURPHY for grammar, as analysed in the previous chapter). Some are used by teachers as supplementary materials, but in many cases they form the backbone if not the entirety of classroom practice. Pub- lishers offer series of such textbooks to cover all the years of primary and/or secondary education, regularly updating them to conform to the latest trends in language education or syllabus specification issued by ministries of education (or other authoritative bodies). And if there is any sort of focus on form in them (cf. Chapter Seven) – and this can apply to all the levels, not just grammar, as well as to the four skills – then we can expect to find the relevant terminology. Two popular series of textbooks published in Hong Kong were analysed for their grammatical terminology.1 These were: 1 I am indebted to two English majors at Lingnan University, Glami Chan and Zoe Wu Suet Yee, who supplied the data for this section in the shape of their Final Year Projects...

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