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English Matters Course for MSc students at IDI. Stewart Clark Rector’s Office Norwegian University of Science and Technology [email protected] tel. +47 73 59 52 45. Four themes. 1. What is academic writing? 1 2. Readability 5

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English matters course for msc students at idi
English Matters Course for MSc students at IDI

Stewart Clark

Rector’s Office

Norwegian University of Science and Technology

[email protected]

tel. +47 73 59 52 45


Four themes
Four themes

1. What is academic writing? 1

2. Readability 5

3. Thesis structure and style 9

4. Web resources 23


Theme 1 some characteristics of academic writing

Theme 1:Some characteristics of academic writing



Use appropriate language
Use appropriate language

Use formal register

  • The government needs to get rid of the deficit. (no)

  • The government needs to eliminate the deficit. (yes)

    Avoid phrasal verbs, use the defining word instead


Use formal English:"Formal" words of classical origin "Informal" native wordsarrange dinner lay on dinnerby coincidence by chancecalculate work outcollect someone pick upcommence work start workconsider weigh upconstruct builddonation a giftwe will endeavour we will tryenquire askfinalize a contract tie up a contractdetermine the results fix the resultsinspect look overmake a reservation book a theatre ticketposition jobreview the problems look at the problemssettle matters sort out matterssettle the account pay the bill


Formal and informal english phrasal verbs
Formal and informal English – phrasal verbs:

two or more words added to a verb such as:

stick around stick by

Phrasal verbs The single word

are often informal equivalent is

usually more formal

(see defining sentences)

stick around wait

stick by loyal

stick out protrude

sting someone borrow


Phrasal verbs in the oxford
Phrasal verbs in the ‘Oxford’:

Phrasal verbs are two or more words added to a verb such as:

These are often informal A single word equivalent is

usually more formal

stick around wait

stick by loyal

stick out protrude

sting someone borrow

s comare common in informal English these words/expressions so that the most formal one is 1, the next most formal is 2 and so on

1. big, large, substantial, huge, enormous, considerable

2. short of money, skint, hard up, in difficulties, insolvent, cleaned out

3. red-letter day, vital concern, big deal, no joke, a matter of life and death, important matter

4. skill, expertise, mastery, ace, gifted, wizardry, competence

5. intellectual, smart ass, egg head, highbrow, guru, boffin


Use academic vocabulary
Use academic vocabulary

Useful nouns

  • Notion, concept, theory, idea, hypothesis, principle, rationale

    Useful verbs

  • Indicate, illustrate, point out, present, embody, state, establish, formulate, accept, reject, support

    Avoid:thing, tell, say

    Study:Academic Word List (see Theme 4 in the compendium)


Tentative language
Tentative language

If you lack absolute proof, or are unsure of a direct causal relationship between phenomena, use tentative language

Examples: tends to, appears to, suggests that, would seem to, indicates that…

  • This tends to occur whenever there is a decrease in pressure.

    Other examples: may, possible, unlikely, probably

  • This may be the result of the sampling method, but with new technology this is unlikely to be a future problem.

    However if something always happens and you are confident it will happen the same way in the future, do not be tentative.

  • This occurs whenever there is a decrease in pressure.


No contractions ("I'm...won't...") = informal style

Contractions (also called short forms) are to be avoided in serious mails/letters, reports and scientific writing.

Typical contractions: aren't, can't, don't, I'm, isn't, it's are used in informal, conversational writing and speech

In formal English, the expected forms are: are not, cannot (usually one word), do not, I am, is not, it is.

Using contractions in the wrong context looks sloppy and leads to mistakes such as it's (it is) when you mean its ("the cat hurt its tail").


Contractions cause confusion
Contractions cause confusion

  • Contractions are typical of informal speech and are only correctly used in academic writing to report speech.

  • Soundalikes that are often confused:

    contraction it's possessive its

    contraction they're possessive their, adv. there

    contraction you're possessive your

    contraction who's possessive whose


! exclamation mark

for emergencies only, not otherwise.

“Fire!”, he screamed

  • All style guides in English agree that exclamation marks should be avoided in formal and academic English. "These should not be used in scholarly writing" (Modern Humanities Research Association Style Book, 1995).

  • It signals a forceful utterance that gives a warning, indicates astonishment and surprise …”absurdity, command, contempt, disgust, emotion, enthusiasm, pain, sorrow, a wish…” (Oxford Dictionary for Writers and Editors)


What is said about do you wear underpants on your head
What is said about !! Do you wear underpants on your head?

”The exclamation mark is the punk in the school of punctuation. Favoured by advertisers, immature writers and writers of ransom notes…”

In Guardian Style (2007), editor David Marsh exclaims simply, "do not use!"

About multiple exclamation marks, novelist Terry Pratchett calls them a "sure sign of someone who wears his underpants on his head.”

If you still find them being used: Google the phrase ”avoid the exclamation mark”


Avoiding etc
Avoiding etc.

a. Indirectly, they also include the impact of industry, business strategy, market, and the economic environment etc.

b. The proposed model considers only risks, while in real life, managers make decisions regarding other important aspects, such as strategy, cost reduction, and service quality etc.

c. Measures in hedging risks may be to keep management in house and use spot contracts when contracting carriers etc.


Politeness acknowledgements
Politeness - Acknowledgements

Be formal :

- I wish to thank my supervisor Professor Arne Olsen at the Department of Computer Science, Norwegian University of Science and Technology for his invaluable assistance.

- I would also like to thank…

- I appreciate the assistance from…

- Special mention is given to to…

- Gratitude is also given to…

- I am grateful for the help from Anne Olsen, research technician and other departmental staff.


Theme 2 what makes texts readable

Theme 2: What makes texts readable?

Online readability tools

Link words

Word order

Nominalization


Using the lix readability index
Using the Lix readability index

"LIX" is a measure of how hard a text is to read. It is defined as the percentage of words longer than six letters plus the average number of words per sentence.

Enter the text in the box and analyse it.

  • LIX < 20: Very easy reading

  • LIX < 30 - 40: Popular reading

  • LIX < 40 - 50: Normal for newspapers

  • LIX < 50 - 60: Normal for academic texts

  • LIX < 60 and higher: Heavy to read, should be revised

    Scroll down and note the list of sentences on the left (variation)

    The word frequency count is given on the right.

    What features do you find interesting about Lix?


Sentence length
Sentence length

Version 1: Even though pervasive gaming is a fairly new field, and there are just a few pervasive games developed, it is already possible to identify several unique types of pervasive games such as smart toys, affective games, augmented tabletop games, augmented reality games and location-aware games (ref).

(Over 40 words). The Lix readability score is 76.

Score: very heavy language

What can be done to make this more readable?


Sentence length1
Sentence length

Version 2: Even though pervasive gaming is a fairly new field and only a few such games have been developed, it is already possible to identify several types of games. These include smart toys, affective games, augmented tabletop games, augmented reality games and location-aware games (ref).

(Two sentences). The Lix readability score is 52.

(Normal for official texts)


Sentence length2
Sentence length

Version 2: Even though pervasive gaming is a fairly new field, and onlythere are just a few suchpervasive games have been developed, it is already possible to identify several unique types of pervasive games. These includesuch as smart toys, affective games, augmented tabletop games, augmented reality games and location-aware games (ref).

What are the changes?

Red = deleted text

Underlined = inserted text


Check how many sentences start with the
Check how many sentences start with ‘the’

The last 20 years has seen overall growth. The international business community was shaken by the financial crisis in 2008. The banking sector was in trouble. The calls for better regulation resulted in…

(Four sentences). The Lix readability score is 36.

(Popularized text, easy reading)


Check how many sentences start with the revised version
Check how many sentences start with ‘the’ – revised version

Although the last 20 years has seen overall growth, the international business community was shaken by the financial crisis in 2008. In particular,the banking sector was in trouble and consequently the calls for better regulation resulted in…

(Two sentences). The Lix readability score is 51.

(Normal for official texts)


Nonlinear Analysis of an Absolute Value Type of version

an Early-Late Gate Bit Synchronizer

Simon, M. California Inst. of Technol., Pasadena, CA, USA

Abstract

The steady-state phase noise performance of an absolute value type of early-late gate bit synchronizer is developed using the Fokker-Planck method.

The results are compared with the performance of two other commonly used bit synchronizer circuit topologies on the basis of either 1) equal equivalent signal to noise in the loop bandwidth in the linear region, or 2) equal loop bandwidth at each input signal-to-noise ratio Rs. These comparisons are made as a function of Rs. In both cases, the absolute value type of early-late gate yields the best performance (in the sense of minimum phase noise) at every value of Rs.

Index TermsAdditive noise , Circuit topology , Integrated circuit noise , Performance analysis , Phase locked loops , Phase noise , Signal analysis , Signal to noise ratio , Steady-state , Voltage-controlled oscillators


Readability exercise
Readability - exercise version

Exercise – find a text of about 100 words on your laptop and enter it in Lix

http://www.lix.se/index.php

Exercise – find a text of about 100 words on your laptop and enter it in Lix

Results over 60 need revision, aim at 50.


Other readability indexes
Other readability indexes version

Most other readability indexes are computed using 5 steps:

  • Count the number of words in the document.

  • Count the number of syllables in the document.

  • Count the number of sentences in the document.

  • Compute the index – formula given

    The result is the number of years of formal education needed to understand the text

    Examples:

    http://www.online-utility.org/english/readability_test_and_improve.jsp

    http://www.standards-schmandards.com/exhibits/rix/

    About the readability isssue:

    http://ezinearticles.com/?Readability-Metrics:-Are-They-Getting-Your-Message?&id=351293


Link words 1
Link words 1 version

Link words to provide a structure of sentences:

  • link words: the subconscious structure in a text

  • link words are like

    signposts by the road

  • links in a process

  • links to orientate the reader


Link words 2
Link words 2 version

1. Linear

First,... Second,... Third,...

Next,... Then,... Finally,...

When you have you the word 'first,' – make sure there is a 'second', a 'third', and a 'finally'.

Example:

  • First, the experiments considered the effect of heating. Second, variations in the temperature were compared at three different pressure readings

    (1 atm, 2 atm, and 3 atm). Third, the effect of pressure was studied as an. Finally, the …

  • NOTFirst, the effect of heating is studied. The temperature was varied and the pressure studied as an independent variable. Then, …


Link words 3
Link words 3 version

2. Loop

having completed ..., the next stage/step is

3. Flashback

previously .....

earlier .....

4. Simultaneously

during this stage ....

while ....

at the same time ....

5. Conclusion

finally,

in the last stage,

the process concludes/finishes with ...

the last step is ... make sure that this is ‘finally’


Link words 4
Link words 4 version

Time and sequence link words

  • to begin with, at first, in the first place, first (second, third, etc.),

  • then, after, afterwards, next, later, previously, soon, subsequently,

  • meanwhile, at the same time, currently, simultaneously, for the time being, immediately, instantly, in the meantime, in time, in turn, presently,

    at last, finally, in conclusion,

    (See Words – A User’s Guide p. 431)


Don t throw the baby out with the bathwater
Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater version

On the one hand, fibres from

different wood species have

properties that vary. On the

other hand, each tree has a

unique distribution of fibre

dimensions due to variation

in growth factors and genetics.

Consequently, it is important

to have a good quality control

of the timber. However, only a few pulp mills

can utilize these opportunities.


Theme 3

Theme 3: version

Thesis structure

Editing your work

Style

British or American English?


Format acknowledgements
Format - Acknowledgements version

Be formal

- I wish to thank my supervisor Professor Arne Olsen at the Department of XZY, Norwegian University of Science and Technology for his invaluable assistance.

- I would also like to thank…

- I appreciate the assistance from…

- Special thanks are given to…

- Gratitude is also given to…

- I am grateful for the help from Anne Olsen, research technician and other department staff in preparing the FEM analysis

- Finally, I acknowledge the generous financial support from the Research Council of Norway


Structure
Structure version

Short report or paper:

  • Sectionused for all levels.

  • Numbered as: 1.1 1.1.1 1.1.1

    Thesis/dissertation or book:

  • Chapter is normally level 1*.

  • Use section for levels 2, 3 and 4

    Avoid "subchapters" and "subsections". Aparagraph is several lines.

    *Part could be level 1 in a thesis with an overview and publications. Then Chapter for level 2 and Section levels 3 & 4

  • Part I: Introduction and Overview

  • Part II: Publications

  • Part III: Appendices


Imrad structure
IMRAD structure version

  • Abstract

  • Introduction

    (problems to be solved)

  • Methods

  • Results and Discussion

    (analysis of findings)

  • Conclusions and

    Recommendations for Further

    Research (logical results)

  • Appendix: Details


Title
Title version

  • Label not a sentence, no final stop (period)

  • Lower case for articles, conjunctions

    (and, but, for, or, nor), and most short prepositions

  • Avoid articles and fuzzy words (some, certain)

    as the first word:

    Use

    Boolean Functions, Transforms, and Recursions

    Not

    Some Boolean Functions, Transforms, and Recursions


Ieee style
IEEE style version

  • For spelling, IEEE uses Webster’s College Dictionary, 4th Edition.

  • For guidance on grammar and usage, consult The Chicago Manual of Style

  • Write good continuous prose

  • Abstracts are stand alone texts

  • ‘By nature, Abstracts shall not contain numbered mathematical equations or numbered references’ (IEEE Editorial Style Manual) http://www.ieee.org/documents/stylemanual.pdf


Abstract format
Abstract - format version

(For scientific reports and theses)

Summary of the information in the report

  • brief statement of why the work was undertaken (objectives)

  • brief statement of methods (methods)

  • clear statement of the significant facts/findings/ideas in the text (results-recommendations)

  • An abstract should be as long as is necessary to sum up the essential information (250 to 500 words as a rule of thumb)


Abstract format1
Abstract - format version

Index Terms

  • After the final paragraph of the Abstract

  • Written in bold as in the Abstract

  • In alphabetical order

  • Acronyms are defined in Index Terms if defined in the paper.


Abstract for comment
‘Abstract’ for comment version

Consider the following:

'Certain problems (specify them) concerning dynamic Boolean systems (without saying which) in some high performance associative memorysystems (unspecified) have been studied. Conclusions have been drawn and recommendations for analytical approaches are made.'


Two abstracts exercise see page 31 in compendium
Two abstracts – exercise version (see page 31 in compendium)

Which of these is the most readable – why?

Do they both contain all the elements one should include in an abstract?


Contents layout example
Contents – layout example version

Abstract . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . i

Acknowledgements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ii

Contents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iii

List of Tables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . v

List of Figures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .vi

Nomenclature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .vii

1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1

1.1 Thesis Motivation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1


Avoid hanging paragraphs version

Source: 2009 IEEE Standards Style Manual


Other front material in theses
Other front material in theses version

Nomenclature

  • Nomenclature lists the symbols and their definitions

    List of Abbreviations

  • Some theses have an alphabetical list of abbreviations and acronyms

    List of Tables

    List of Figures

  • Check that the captions correspond to those in the text


Content introduction
Content – Introduction version

- Introduction (all items addressed in about

10 lines).- Brief context background (10 lines). - What is the problem? backed by references. - What is the current state-of art/research frontier in addressing the problem? backed by references. - Objectives of the paper. What is new in this paper related to the two items above. - Short preview of approach/method used. - Outline of the paper.

Source: Bjarne Helvik, Vice Dean, IME, NTNU


Context problem response
Context + Problem + Response version

Presentation of the scope of the subject

Review of previous work and theoretical considerations

Presentation of the problem and your objectives and strategy in writing the report

State what is new, the response = approach/method in your response

Should NOT contain information you know as a result of having completed the work you are about to report


Introduction stating objectives
Introduction – stating objectives version

- Ideas to catch the reviewer’s interest:

The destabilizing condition

“It is generally accepted that these chemicals cause the build up of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (+ ref.).But recently the processes thatthin the ozone layer have been studied more closely and it was found that… (+ ref.)”

That powerful word – ‘However’

“It is generally accepted that these chemicals cause the build up of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (+ ref.).However, recent simulations indicate that… (+ ref.)”

“Recently, however, the theory that…”


Introduction previewing the approach method used
Introduction – previewing the approach/method used version

- The promise of a solution:

“…ozone layer has been studied more closely and it was found that… (+ ref.). In this paper we present an innovative analysis of chemical bonding that…”

“This paper provides an alternative approach to wind farm design that promises to …” “a promising approach”, “a more cost-effective approach”

- State what you are comparing your work to

- Avoid subjective words like “better approach”

or “superior solution”

E = mc2

E = mc2


Outline section introduction
Outline section – Introduction version

Explains how the thesis is organized at level 1

For a paper, use ‘Section’ for levels 1, 2 & 3

Chapter 2 considers…

Then, Chapter 3 turns to the issue of …

After this, Chapter 4 demonstrates …

This is followed by Chapter 5 which presents the conclusions and applications of this work for the fish farming industry. Finally, Chapter 6 outlines the implications and potential for further research in this field.

(Avoid overusing ‘show’)


Format body
Format – Body version

  • Methods

    - The defence of your results and their reliability

  • Results and Discussion

    - Presentation of principles, relationships and generalizations

  • Exceptions/unsettled points

  • Applications/implications

  • Conclusions and Recommendations for Further Work


Format end matter
Format – End matter version

  • References

    This has no section number in front

  • Appendix/Appendices

    Presentation of important experiments, data and computations.

    Label: Appendix A, Appendix B, Appendix C...

    “See Figure A.12 and Table C.11 for…”


Order of writing
Order of writing version

B >C> I> A> T

>Body

methods (details to appendices)

results (details to appendices)

> Conclusions

recommendations for further

work

> Introduction

> Abstract/exec. summary

> Title


Editing your work 1
Editing your work 1 version

Formal editing:

  • Do the section titles in the report match the contents list?

  • Are tables and figures in chronological order?

  • Are words like table, figure, equation, section correctly capitalized?

  • Are terms like figure, equation, section consistent? (Figure 3/Fig. 4. Equation 6/Eq. 4)

  • Use of brackets. Are sections and

    equations easy to pick out? What is (3.3)?

  • Check the cited references for consistency.

    Use (Olsen 1997) or (Olsen, 1997), not both.


Editing your work 2
Editing your work 2 version

Stylistic editing:

  • Check the recommended style in "Instructions to Authors" from the journal you are submitting to?

  • The Harvard reference system, preferred in this journal, uses the name of the author, the date of publication and, following quoted material, the page reference, as a key to the full bibliographic details set out in the list of references.

    Examples in the text:

  • ‘This has been questioned by several authors (Smith 1990, Jones and Cook 1998, Dobbs et al. 1991)’.

    (N.B. et al. is used in the text when

    there are three or more authors.)

  • ‘Swanwick (1988, p. 56) has attempted to …’


Editing your work 3
Editing your work 3 version

Reference list:

  • Where there are two or more works by one author in the same year, use 1997a, 1997b, etc.

  • The reference list must include every work cited in the text. Ensure that dates, spelling and titles used in the text are consistent with those listed in the reference list.

  • All co-authors are to be cited. Do not use et al. here.

  • Check the correct use of italics and

    punctuation in the reference list.


Editing your work 4
Editing your work 4 version

Reference list:

  • Check the reference list for consistency

    - institution names,

    - names of journals,

  • Avoid Norwegian and English terms for

    the same institution.

    (Use Google to check on the home page.

    Be careful: a PhD degree from NTNU in 1995

    is impossible in two ways).


Editing your work 5
Editing your work 5 version

Use of page references in the reference list:

  • Number system for papers (1999, 33-44)

  • Use the p./ pp. system for printed works

    (1999, p. 3 and pp. 33-44)

  • Place p. after the title to give the total number

    of pages Word for Word, 242 p.


Ieee style manual decide reference format

IEEE Style Manual version Decide reference format

’NOTE: Editing of references may entail careful renumbering of references, as well as the citations in text.’ (From IEEE Style Manual)

My suggestion: use the Harvard system (name and year) as a working tool, then convert to IEEE style when finished.


Ieee style manual reference format

IEEE Style Manual version Reference format

References in Text: In square brackets, inside the punctuation. e.g.,

…as shown by Brown [4], [5]; as mentioned earlier [2],

or as nouns:

as demonstrated in [3]; according to [4] and [6]–[9].


Ieee style manual reference format1

IEEE Style Manual version Reference format

Reference list: Basic Format:

[1] J. K. Author, “Nameofpaper,” Abbrev. TitleofPeriodical, vol. x, no. x, pp. xxx-xxx, Abbrev. Month, year.

Example:

[1] R. E. Kalman, “New results in linear filtering and predictiontheory,” J. Basic Eng., ser. D, vol. 83, pp. 95-108, Mar. 1961.

NOTE: IEEE style usepp. for bothprintedworks and papers

See: IEEE Editorial Style Manual, pp. 7-13

http://www.ieee.org/documents/stylemanual.pdf


Ieee style manual caption format

IEEE Style Manual version Caption format

Suggest: consecutivenumbering in eachchapterwithstops

Fig. 3.1. Exampleof linear filtering.

Fig. 3.1. Exampleof linear filtering

’See Figs. 3.1 – 3.4’

Alternative:

Figure 3.1. Comparing traditional data mining (top) and information visualization (bottom) processes.


Some currencies and their three-character ISO 4217 currency codeISOhome page (http://www.iso.ch/) refers to sources of complete, updated versions of this list.

AUD Australian dollar BRL Brazilian real

CAD Canadian dollar CHF Swiss franc

CNY Chinese yuan DKK Danish krone

DZD Algerian dinar EUR euro

GBP British pound IDR Indonesian rupiah

INR Indian rupee IQD Iraqi dinar

IRR Iranian rial JPY Japanese yen

KRW Korea won KWD Kuwaiti dinar

MXP Mexican peso NGN Nigerian naira

NOK Norwegian krone NZD New Zealand dollar

PHP Philippine peso PKR Pakistan rupee

RUB Russian rouble USD American dollar


Currency codes
Currency codecodes

  • Use ISO currency codes (EUR, NOK, GBP, USD etc.) - not "krone" or "dollar", which type?

  • The currency code is written first, but read last

    Written English Spoken English EUR 15.50 Fifteen euro fifty (cents)

    NOK 2 million Two million Norwegian kronerUSD 25.50 Twenty-five US dollars fifty GBP 3.20 Three pounds twenty


Confusions with amounts of money
Confusions with amounts of money code

Consider:

Wages: "The salary is NOK 387.859 per annum"

(this means about NOK 388)

Prices:"The price is NOK 1,675 a unit “

(this means about NOK 1675)

  • k for kilo (1000) as in kNOK 35 may confuse.

    (write NOK 35 000)

  • Avoid MEUR 25. Write EUR 25 m or EUR 25 million

  • "Crowns" for monarchs, use “(Norwegian) krone"


Writing amounts of money
Writing amounts of money code

Decimal point in English 34.956

(Other languages - comma 34,956)

Thousand/million/billion markers

- use spaces above 9999 (ISO) 34 956

Do not use a comma here in English

Note nothing is written after an amount

Not: 34 956,- Use: 34 956


Writing exact amounts
Writing exact amounts code

NOK 1 000 000 million Abbr. (m)

avoid MNOK 1

NOK 1 000 000 000 billion Abbr. (bn)

(Norw.: milliard)

NOK 1 000 000 000 000 trillion Abbr.

trillion

(Norw.: billion)


Digital dates code

There are three main formats in use for writing dates in digital form:

European (day-month-year)

American (month-day-year)

Military (year-month-day)

This can cause problems in contracts, agreements, emails and letters


Never write a date like this in English: code

Payment is to be made by 11/01/14 (or 11.01.14)

In Britain, this will be understood as

11 January 2014, whereas AE users may understand this as November 1, 2014.

The only internationally accepted digital format:

(ISO 8601) Model: 2014-01-11(CCYY-MM-DD)

Read as ”on the 11th of January 2014*”(BE)

”on January 11th 2014”(AE)

*”twenty-fourteen” has become the English standard


The date of the twin towers attack 9 11
The date of the Twin Towers attack - 9/11 code

  • For all-digit dates use ISO 8601 format

    The model is 2001-09-11 (CCYY-MM-DD)

  • Otherwise, 11 September 2001 - normal BE format (Read as: ”the 11th of September 2001”)

  • September 11, 2001 - normal AE format

    (Read as: ”September the 11th, 2001”)

  • Note no ordinal numbers in modern written dates in English (not 1st, 2nd, 3rd)


Spacing
Spacing code

  • Keep 2000 oC as one unit.

  • Use a space before symbols like cm, m, km, %, oC, as in: 25 %, 300 oC

  • In a range, use a space on each side of a dash: 30 - 40 mm. Note that between and from should be followed by and or to, as in "between 1995 and 1997" or "from 55 oC to 85 oC”.


Punctuation 1
Punctuation 1 code

: colon used before a list

; semi-colon

separates main items in a list: Separates the main items in a list: “Olsen, 2005; Smith and James, 2002; Black et al., 2004”

stop/full stop (BE)/period (AE)

one idea per sentence

…ellipsis

three dots mark a word/words … omitted.

Normal punctuation follows: Did she? said John ….

See Words – A User’s Guide pp. 405 - 413


Punctuation 2
Punctuation 2 code

; semi-colon

separates main items in a list: Separates the main items in a list: “Olsen, 2005; Smith and James, 2002; Black et al., 2004”

…ellipsis

three dots mark a word/words … omitted.

Normal punctuation follows: Did she? said John ….

See Words – A User’s Guide pp. 405 - 413


Comma use
Comma use code

Comma before ‘and’ = Harvard comma / Oxford comma / serial comma adds more precision. Compare:

- This unit can print, scan, fax and log usage

  • This unit can prints, scan, fax, and log usage

    Comma before ‘and’ also avoids

    ambiguity:

    ‘To my parents, John Smith and God’

    ‘To my parents, John Smith, and God’

    Seehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serial_comma



Tips on line breaks
Tips on line breaks code

  • Avoid dividing words, if possible

  • Avoid creating odd words like: wo-men and mini-ster

    (use women and minis-ter)

  • Divide the word according to its origin and meaning:

    tele-phone (not telep-hone); atmo-sphere (not atmos-phere);

    re-adjust (not read-just)

  • Divide as pronounced: edi-ble (not ed-ible); propo-sition;

    ordi-nary; classi-fi-ca-tion (three divisions possible);

  • Divide before -ing: carry-ing; mov-ing

  • Double letters + -ing divide between the double letters:

    refer-ring; control-ling

  • Follow the dots in dictionary headwords - ther·ap·ist

    See ‘Words’ page 412


British english be or american english ae
British English (BE) or American English (AE)? code

  • Latest BE dictionaries (Oxford), prefer "-ize" in "organize". Brussels & London use ”-ise”.

  • '- ize is the world English norm'

    New Penguin Dictionary (2000).

  • Note verbs: advise, comprise, devise and supervise have "-ise" in BE and in AE.

  • BE > less hyphenation: Cooperate, coordinate, multiphase, multidisciplinary.

  • Statoil, SINTEF, NTNU and public sector in Norway have BE as the norm.


Thesis or dissertation
Thesis or Dissertation? code

At most universities in the UK:

  • thesis is used at PhD level

  • dissertation is used at master's

    or bachelor’s levels

    At most universities in the USA:

  • dissertationis used PhD level

  • thesis is at master's

    or bachelor’s levels


Summary of british american spellings
Summary codeof British & American spellings

-ce, -se

British spellings American spellings

advice (noun) =advice (noun)

advise (verb) =advise (verb)

device (noun) =device (noun)

devise (verb) =devise (verb)

licence (noun)license (noun)

license (verb) =license (verb)

practice (noun) =practice (noun)

practise (verb) practice (verb)

defencedefense

offenceoffense


Summary of british american spellings1
Summary codeof British & American spellings

-ise, -ize (-isation, -ization)

American spelling avoids -ise endings in words like organize, realize

British spelling mostly uses -ise, but -ize is also used (organise, organize / realise,realize) Ratio 3:2 in the British National Corpus

Oxford (BE) favours -ize/ -ization, this dominates internationally

Many verbs onlytake-s- in BE and AE: advise, arise, comprise, compromise, despise, devise, exercise, revise, supervise, televise (see ‘Words’ page 188)

-yse, -yze

-yse is British and -yze is American.

British English analyse, hydrolyse, paralyse

American English analyze, hydrolyze, paralyze


Summary of british american spellings2
Summary codeof British & American spellings

-our, -or

British spellings American spellings

colour color

habour harbor

labour labor

neighbour neighbor

Note many -or spellings in both British and American English such as honorary, vigorous, laborious


Summary of british american spellings3
Summary codeof British & American spellings

-re, -er

The commondifference is words ending -bre or -tre:

British spellings American spellings

centrecenter

fibrefiber

litre liter

manoeuvremaneuver

theatretheater

metre meter

meter

Note many -erspellings in British English such as filter, number, parameter, September and sober.


Summary of british american spellings4
Summary codeof British & American spellings

-ll, -l

British English doubling for -ed, -ing, -er, -est -or

British spellings American spellings

cancelledcanceled

counsellorcounselor

cruellestcruelest

labelledlabeled

modellingmodeling

signallingsignaling

travelling traveling

Note controlled, controlling in both British and American English

American English doubling in words such as:

British spellings American spellings

enrol(ment) enroll(ment)

fulfil(ment) fulfill(ment)

skilful skillful

wilful willful


Summary of british american spellings5
Summary of British & American spellings code

British spellings American spellings

-mme programme -m program

-m = program

in computer science only

non- non-profit nonprofit

non-linear nonlinear

-oe- diarrhoea -e- diarrhea

-ae- leukaemia -e- leukemia

-ogue- catalogue -og catalog

-oul- mould -ol- mold


Ton or tonne
Ton or tonne? code

When referring to weight there are three terms:

  • Tonne or metric ton

    = 1000 kg

  • Short ton (USA)

    = 907 kg

  • Long ton (UK)

    = 1016 kg


Gallons pint and litres
Gallons, pint and litres code

US gallons and US pints differ from the Imperial gallons and pints

The UK onesarelarger

NASA'smetric

confusioncaused

Mars orbiter loss (1999)

Software produced output

n in pound-seconds (lbf×s) instead of newton-seconds (N×s)


Be or ae pronunciation
BE or AE - pronunciation code

Wide regional differences in both BE and AE.

Note vowels of words like new, Tuesday, clerk, data and dance/grass (in southern BE),

Also note pronunciations of fertile and missile are a good indication of BE/AE differences fur’tile – furt’l

Stressing: Different word stress in some words in BE and AE.

Compare BE ad'vertisement and AE adver'tisement;

BE alu'minium and AE a'luminum (note spelling difference)

BE la'boratory and AE 'laboratory

Check pronunciation in online dictionaries


Be or ae some grammatical issues
BE or AE - some grammatical issues code

In informal AE, the past participle get is gotten;

in BE it is got

AE: I've gotten a new automobile; BE: I've got a new car

Irregular verb differences, dived (past participle and past tense of dive in BE) and dove (AE); leapt (mostly BE) and leaped (mostly AE); sank (BE) and sunk (AE); shrank (BE) and shrunk (AE)

Note spelt (BE) and spelled (BE and AE)

Often occurs in other verbs learnt (BE), learned (BE & AE)

Differences in prepositions. Examples:

BE AE

a quarter past three a quarter after three

a quarter to four a quarter of four

at school in school

fill in a form fill out a form

Friday to Sunday Friday through Sunday


Theme 4 web resources

Theme 4: codeWeb resources

English Matters portal

www.ntnu.edu/english-matters/

Pronunciation help

Vocabulary resources

Academic Word List

Online course in academic writing

Self study exercises

“The Elements of Style”


Collocation exercise 1 natural word partnerships
Collocation code exercise 1– natural word partnerships

Some words belong together naturally, others do not.

Insert the opposites:

  • Heavy traffic/ ________traffic on the roads

  • He suffered from a heavy cold/_______ cold

  • A cup of strong coffee/________coffee

  • A strong/_________wind was blowing


Collocation exercise 2

Match each of these nouns to one of the groups of verbs. All the verbs must collocate with the noun:

battle struggle fight war

avoid, get into, pick, provoke

declare, go to, lead to, prolong, wage

be engaged in, continue, give up, take up

fight, force, go into, lose

(See English Matters, Vocabulary exercises from Stewart)

Collocation exercise 2


Lexical chunks and collocations
Lexical chunks and collocations the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Lexical chunks by the way on the other hand stick your neck out

If I were a boy out of sight, out of mind (these are set phrases, idioms, not collocations)Collocationsabsolutely convinced (20) extremely convinced (0)

(adverb + verb)

slight breeze (20) light wind (25) weak wind (0) (adjective + noun)

Numbers refer to hits onthe British National Corpus


Resources on the web
Resources on the Web the verbs must collocate with the noun:

  • Oxford Teachers’ Club

    www.oup.com/elt/global/teachersclub/

  • British Council Education and Training

    www.britishcouncil.org/education

  • English Matters

    www.ntnu.no/intersek/english_matters


English matters the verbs must collocate with the noun:Nettportal for deg som bruker engelsk som arbeidsspråk.www.ntnu.no/international/english_matters/

Online dictionaries – EN/EN

  • Longman (BE), Miriam Webster (AE),

  • Roget’s Thesaurus, Slang dictionary

  • Dictionaries with pronunciation and translation help

    Online dictionaries – EN/NO and NO/EN

  • Ordnett, Clue, UMB’s Green Dictionary


English matters
English matters the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Longman online dictionary - Collocations

Chance - collocations

  • there's a chance (that) (=it is possible that)

  • there's every chance (that) (=it is very likely)

  • some chance little chance no chance a good/fair chance (=something is likely)

  • a slight/slim/outside chance (=something is unlikely)

  • a fifty-fifty chance (=the possibility of something happening or not happening is equal)

  • a million to one chance/a one in a million chance (=something is extremely unlikely to happen)


British national corpus bnc
British National Corpus (BNC) the verbs must collocate with the noun:

  • 100 million word collection of BE texts

  • Oxford UP, Longman, Chambers and British Library

  • Free search sampler

    http://sara.natcorp.ox.

    ac.uk/lookup.html

Exercise:

something that is quite likely to happen

Is it a large? great? big? possibility of …

or a strong/real/distinct possibility?

Use Longman and BNC to find out, and which verb to use


Use to bnc to check collocations
Use to BNC to check collocations the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Standard collocations ’I found it on the Web’

absolutely convinced (20) extremely convinced (0)

(adverb + verb)

slight breeze (20)

light wind (25) weak wind (0)

(adjective + noun)

Numbers refer to hits onthe British National Corpus


English matters1
English matters the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Terminology – EN/NO and NO/EN

  • UHR Termbase (educational terminology), EØS base

  • Norwegian ministries

  • Norwegian legislation (Lovdata)

    Style

  • Emails and letters

  • English Style Guidelines

  • Academic writing portal, self study exercises

  • CV writing


English matters2
English matters the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Vocabulary

  • Vocabulary and current affairs BBC World Service, select "News English" 3 new stories a week. Often lesson plans in pdf

  • BE and AE newspapers

    Self-study

  • Collocation exercises

  • Agreement exercise

  • Phrasal verbs

  • Prepositions

  • Prefixes (BBC English 1)


Using english for academic purposes a guide for students in academic writing

Using English for Academic Purposes the verbs must collocate with the noun:A Guide for Students in Academic Writing

Linked on:

English Matters


Writing paragraphs
Writing paragraphs the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Click on Paragraph

  • Try Exercise 2 (Pesticide Suicide)

    Continue to Topic

    - Identifying topic sentences

  • Do Exercise 7 in groups of 3

    Click on Flow

    - Flow of information in paragraphs using key words

  • Try Exercise 8


Writing paragraphs1
Writing paragraphs the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Click on Paragraph

Continue to Signalling = link words

Note all the examples

  • Do exercises 10 and 11.

  • Any contrasts?


Writing paragraphs2
Writing paragraphs the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Continue to Cohesion,

see lexical cohesion = key terms

use reference words like…

this process, this view, this solution, these approaches

Words that summarize the text in the first sentence and connects the next sentence.


Writing paragraphs3
Writing paragraphs the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Group exercise: Add suitable reference words to complete this paragraph:

’As soon as it gets to a certain size, every organization begins to feel a need to systematize its management of human resources.’

Some suggestions: account, advice, answer, argument, assertion, assumption, claim, comment, conclusion, criticism, description, difficultly, discussion, distinction, emphasis, estimate, example, explanation, fall, finding, idea, improvement, increase, observation, proof, proposal, reference, rejection, report, rise, situation, suggestion, view.


Functions
Functions the verbs must collocate with the noun:

  • Click on functions in academic writing

    No.16. Introducing

    - note useful phrases at the bottom

    No. 9. Including tables

  • note language tips at the bottom

  • Click on Exercises and try Ex. 1 and 2 (Gap filling)


Functions citing sources
Functions/Citing sources the verbs must collocate with the noun:

Functions

  • Click on functions in academic writing

    No. 17. Conclusions

    - note useful phrases at the bottom

    Citing sources

  • Reporting and summarizing

    - note useful phrases at the bottom


Academic vocabulary
Academic vocabulary the verbs must collocate with the noun:

  • Academic Word List (AWL) about 600 core terms

  • An AWL term has to occur over 100 times in the 3.5 million word Academic Corpus.

  • The AWL is like the icing on a cake.

  • BUT don’t overdo it. A text that is full of AWL terms will be heavy to read.

  • Details of the Academic Corpus: http://www.victoria.ac.nz/lals/resources/academicwordlist/corpus.aspx


Academic word list
Academic Word List the verbs must collocate with the noun:

  • Note the derived terms = 3000 words

  • Dictionary link on left

  • Pronunciation help

  • Visual thesaurus

  • Two sets of exercises based on AWL


The elements of style william strunk jr
The Elements of Style the verbs must collocate with the noun:William Strunk, Jr.

  • Classic reference book

  • Gives the principal requirements of plain English style in just over 80 pages.

  • Focus on the rules of usage and principles of composition

  • Sections II, III and V are the most useful

  • Free online link: http://www.bartleby.com/141/


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