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Profile: FlowerDew
User Name: FlowerDew
Forum Rank: Newbie
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Joined: Thursday, April 12, 2012
Last Visit: Thursday, March 5, 2015 5:29:02 PM
Number of Posts: 36
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  Last 10 Posts
Topic: among the government?
Posted: Sunday, August 12, 2012 5:46:53 PM

I was away for a while from the forum... Now I have a question regarding the use of 'among'. I know we can use the 'among' for a singular noun which in fact implies plural, as in 'among the crowd', 'among the public', etc. Then can 'the government' be treated as such nouns? I was trying to write: "there is an increasing awareness of ... among the government as well as the general public."

Please advise on the phrase "among ... public" in my sentence above.

Topic: Hyphen use
Posted: Friday, June 1, 2012 6:38:50 PM
thar wrote:

I know I am plodding in a bit late here,
**Actually I was waiting for you to plod in Applause Applause Applause and to me, there is nothing like being late when it comes to people trying to help with such tricky things

At least, this is my logic of why you choose green.

the non negates the next noun in the sentence. When there is no hyphen it is the next word. When the next idea is two words connected with a a hyphen it is the second word of the hyphen pair that is the main noun.

non-English speaking = speaking not English. eg speaking another language eg French, Japanese.

X is English speaking (X speaks English)
Y is non-English speaking ( Y speaks a language that is not English)

non English-speaking means not speaking English, unable to speak English.
X is English-speaking (X speaks English)
Y is non English-speaking (Y does not speak English)

**But when this is used as a noun-modifier as in "Y is from a non English-speaking background", I think this does not necessarily mean Y does not speak English--Y may or may not speak English--but that it simply means his/her background is not English-speaking--Y's first/native language is not English. Am I correct?

the third version non-English-speaker, is not used, because whichever idea you wanted to convey, it could be conveyed using sentence one or two (I would take it to mean the same as sentence 2- the main noun to negate is the second one - not speaking English.

there is a difference.
for instance an non-English speaker ( a Japanese speaker) may also speak English.
Z is a non-English speaker and an English speaker (Z speaks another language, and Z speaks English)

and the English non-speaker may speak another language
T is a non English-speaker, but is a Japanese speaker (T does not speak English, but T does speak Japanese)

**Here again, what you explained in the parentheses does not necessarily mean T is unable to speak English, does it?]

aint language sneaky this way! Does this help, or have I just over-complicated it all??

Yes, indeed it IS sneaky! But of course your logic has helped although it was a little complicated.
So, then, if we speak of language backgrounds, will the following fit your logic?
I have 3 non-native speakers of English, all from different first language backgrounds, say, Russian, Chinese and German. They speak English but at different levels of proficiency.
Then can I write "All three are from a non English-speaking background"? (with a hyphen between English and speaking!)

Topic: Hyphen use
Posted: Tuesday, May 29, 2012 8:11:03 PM
Hi forum users,
non-English speaking / non English-speaking / non-English-speaking backgrounds...

Which is right?

Topic: envisagement
Posted: Tuesday, May 29, 2012 6:00:06 PM
Thank you thar and Drag0n, for your excellent clarification as usual.
Although I got confused between envision(ment) and envisage(ment) in the middle from the point where Drag0n mistyped, I think I could work out thanks to your next conversations. And I thought maybe Drag0n's fingers "refused to type envisagement" because they didn't take it as a "word"!
Yes, actually I was not sure about the word and that is the reason I asked the forum. I googled and ran the concordance with the word before turning to the forum. I found some articles coming up with the word but mainly from google scholar with names of authors who seemed to be from non-native speakers of English. There was nothing ever coming up from the concordance...

And jbc, yes, I also thought about sounding 'snobbish', which I wanted to avoid.

I'm glad I made the right decision to ask the forum!
Topic: envisagement
Posted: Monday, May 28, 2012 10:38:22 PM
Dear forum users,

Can "envisagement" be collocated with "fulfill"/"come to fruition"?

Please consider the following phrases, one of which I would like to use after discussing what is envisaged in certain policies. (I actually borrowed the word "envisage" from the policy document and used it in this discussion as in: "these policies envisage a considerable increase in ...")

1.In order for this envisagement to be fulfilled, it is crucial to ...
2.In order for this envisagement to come to fruition, it is crucial to...

Could anyone let me know if both collocations are acceptable, and if so, which sounds better?
Otherwise, which of the two is not acceptable?
If neither is acceptable, what could be the alternative?

Many thanks in advance

Topic: Why do I write 'teh' for 'the'?
Posted: Friday, May 25, 2012 7:23:43 PM
What about 'Pk', although it is rather a rare one? One day I was exchanging several emails with one of my colleagues and at one point I received a single cryptic 'Pk' from her. I'm quite close to her as we've been working together for so many years to the extent I could decipher her bad handwriting. Now we use emails, SMSs and track changes on word files (if we get more serious) and I find all 'teh's, 'yuor's, ' thier's, 'hve's, 'adn's and two consecutive uppercase letters at the beginning of my name when she addresses me--of course I make same typos but I think her case is quite worse than mine Whistle She sometimes writes 'than' for 'that'.

So I was quite confident I could figure out what she meant most of the time in spite of all her typos. But this time one single 'Pk' and it was even capitalised suspiciously! I thought she used a cryptic acronym (because she sometimes does) and sent an email asking serously what she meant (because we were talking about a serious matter). Then she said she meant 'OK'!!! d'oh! She was using her iphone and taking trouble with the tiny keypad (is this the right name?). Adn the clever iphone even followed teh capitalisation rule!
Topic: an ambiguous title of an essay
Posted: Thursday, May 24, 2012 6:52:50 PM
Romany--I am just thrilled! Actually since I joined this forum I enjoyed reading your posts because they are so insightful--in terms of how you respond to the questions about grammar points (this is the forum I most frequently visit but I have started to visit other fora, too) as well as how you deal with matters/difficulties you encounter teaching in China. (But I must add other members' responses were as insightful, too!) I think I'll start the thread after working on this person's article as I think I'll need to post more questions regarding his/her use of English (and my Interpretation therof).

Hope your arm is healing well (i know what happened Dancing )
Topic: "I was wondering"
Posted: Thursday, May 24, 2012 5:39:11 PM
Hi Drag0nspeaker and DavidScott,
How about 'would you be able to...'? Litterally speaking, it should be the same as " could you..." given that the "can" can be replaced with "be able to". Then would there be any difference between "would you..." and " would you be able to..." in terms of relative politeness/formality? To me, 'would you... ' sounds more polite, though.
In addition, I wonder if you could let me know the use of 'literally speaking' in my sentence above is correct?
Topic: an ambiguous title of an essay
Posted: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 7:06:59 PM
Thanks JJ, Romany and DavidScott for your insightful comments.
Although I was a little ambiguous myself (as DS rightfully pointed out) by not providing the main heading in full, you could see the problem through my ambiguity. The reason why I did not spell out the 'X or Y' here is that I thought it would bring up another dimension of debate, while I just wanted to focus on the ambiguity of the subheading. Also, there was an additional reason related to ethics--I was a little afraid I would be revealing too much about the essay--the full title

DavidScott wrote:
FlowerDew: I'm wondering if "X or Y" is the actual wording in the title, or if you use X and Y as a sort of short-hand for the actual wording? I ask because it could have some bearing on the meaning the author is trying to convey. This isn't necessarily the case, though.
In my opinion, the title as a whole is relatively meaningless. It is somewhat ambiguous, but not entirely so. If the author wanted to say that he was focusing on the ESL learners' perspective(s), he could have said, "ESL Learners and Sociocultural Perspective." This, I believe, would convey the sense of the influence of sociocultural perspective inherent in learning English as a non-native speaker. As it is, using the word "from" expresses the fact that their views are being
evaluated from a point of view outside of theirs.

My answer: Yes, the 'X or Y' is a kind of short-hand and I was trying not to reveal the actual wording by the author. There are debates in the field on certain approaches in ESL teaching--to teach this way (X) or that way (Y): the author was reporting on his/her research conducted on learners by asking them about their preference between the two and he/she did it from a sociocultural perspective. (The 'X or Y' is actually a topic many of us might be interested in. So I think I might start a new thread on it in a different forum later (but not here).

I like Romany's resolution of the problem. Why couldn't the author have simply said, "A Socicultural Perspective on ESL Learners' Views on X or Y." Of course, the author may have felt his choice of wording made him appear more sophisticated. (Not that writers are ever guilty of this!Whistle )

I agree with you DS and Romany. And I completely agree with your last comment, David. The problem is his/her possible attempt to look/sound more sophisticated is compounded with his/her lack of mastery of English. The best strategy to use in writing, whether it is for academic audience or children is to use as simple easy words and expressions as possible and it seems particularly so when the author is an NNS of that language used in the writing. But it also seems to take long to learn this. Boo hoo!

Topic: an ambiguous title of an essay
Posted: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 7:35:53 AM
Dear forum users,

I was asked to read an essay with the following title and to comment on it:

"X or Y: ESL Learners’ Views from a Sociocultural Perspective"

To me, the sub-title "ESL Learners ... Perspective" reads as meaning that the essay is about ESL learners' views on the choice between X and Y and that ESL learners take a sociocultural perspective to view that choice, which is not the essay is about. The essay is about "ESL learners' views" on that choice and was written from a "sociocultural perspective" which is the perspective of the author but not the learners.

Could I get confirmed my reading is correct? In addition, could I get a better explanation of the problem of the title?

Thanks in advance.

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