Module Details

IA902-7-AU-CO: Practical Description Of English

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Year: 2016/17
Department: International Academy
Essex credit: 15
ECTS credit: 7.5
Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students: No
Full Year Module Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students for a Single Term: No
Outside Option: No

Supervisor: Mark Holloway
Teaching Staff: Mark Holloway
Contact details:

Module is taught during the following terms
Autumn Spring Summer

Module Description

This module reviews English systems - lexical, grammatical and phonological - from a practical perspective. The aim is to equip TESOL practitioners with a clearer awareness of how these systems work and practical ways to transfer that knowledge to the TESOL classroom.

Module aims

The aims of this module are:

- to provide a description of the lexical, grammatical and phonological systems of English and their relationships
- to deepen participants' understanding of the underlying theories related to these systems and their relevance to English language teaching
- to explore different theories of language analysis (including corpora-informed analyses)
- to consider the relevance, efficacy and applicability of these theories to the language learning and teaching contexts

Learning outcomes

At the end of this module participants will have a clear understanding of:

- the lexical , grammatical and phonological systems of English
- a range of current thinking and developments in the description of English including corpora-informed teaching materials and methodologies.
- ways in which the TESOL practitioners can make more informed judgments about language learning problems including text and task selection for their particular teaching contexts


Phonetics and phonology
Grammar (at word, phrase, clause, and sentence level)
Use of Linguistic Corpora
Introduction to discourse analysis

Learning and Teaching Methods

This module will be delivered by a weekly two hour seminar. Students will also have the opportunity to have individual tutorials throughout the term where they can ask for advice regarding their assignment, or raise any other issues. Some of the sessions, in which practical training will be provided in the use of linguistic corpora, will take place in PC labs.


100 per cent Coursework Mark


There will be one assignment of 3,000 words.


  • Cook, G. 2001, Discourse, Oxford University Press
  • Cowan, R. 2008, The Teacher's Grammar of English, Cambridge University Press
  • Culpeper, J. et al (eds) 2009 English Language: Description, Variation and Context. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Larsen - Freeman, D. 2003 Teaching Language: From Grammar to Grammaring. Thomson Heinle.
  • O'Keefe, A. et al. 2007, From Corpus to Classroom, Cambridge University Press.
  • Roach, P. 2000, English Phonetics and Phonology: a Practical Course, Cambridge University Press
  • Thornbury, S. , 2005, Beyond the Sentence: Introducing Discourse Analysis, Macmillan
  • Underhill, A. 2005, Sound Foundations, Macmillan
  • Yule, G. 2003, Explaining English Grammar, Oxford University Press
  • Yule, G. 2010, The Study of Language, Cambridge University Press

Further information