UGE takes a very wide view of the notion «grammar»: it deals not only with parts of speech (Part A), and with sentences (Part B), but also with textual features (Part C) and interactional features of language use (Part D). Hence there is a more encompassing framework in UGE in most other comparable grammars. This wide view follows from a concept of grammar which embraces various aspects of communication.
Given such a wide scope, UGE could only be the product of a collective authorship. Each chapter has been written by a single author (or a team) and each of the four parts has, to a considerable extent, been harmonized and cross-referenced by the four co-editors.
The English described in UGE is both British and American educated English, but British English has been taken as the main target, and only occasionally are specific features of American English highlighted. In most chapters a concerted effort has been made to describe the phenomena of English grammar from an implicitly contrastive viewpoint: the more exclusive features of English have been given greater consideration while those common to many languages have been considered in less detail.