Description of English

Module code: ED7003

Module co-ordinator: to be confirmed

In this module you will study approaches to the teaching of grammatical form and their suitability in a variety of teaching contexts. We will look at key concepts and terminology in the analysis and description of grammar. We will also explore grammatical analysis, including techniques of linguistic argumentation and use of examples. We will examine the complexity of form/meaning relationships and the use of descriptive and pedagogical grammar in English.

After exploring grammar, we turn our attention to phonology, studying the key concepts, terminology, and approaches in phonology and pronunciation teaching. We will discuss contemporary issues and debates within the field. You will conduct phonological analysis of English native and learner language, including phonemic transcription, and learn how to analyse and assess learners' pronunciation difficulties and needs.

The School of Education delivers this key skills course with particular reference to its application in TESOL, but assessments include sufficient options that students on the English Language and Linguistics MA will not be required to focus on the educational applications of English grammar and phonology if their research interests lie elsewhere. However, work in TESOL adds a useful vocational aspect to the English Language and Linguistics MA.

Topics covered

  • Introduction to key issues
  • The noun phrase
  • The verb-group word
  • Adjectives and adjective phrases
  • Adverbs and adverbials
  • Transitivity
  • Interrogative clauses
  • The sentence
  • Speech production
  • Vowels
  • Phonemes
  • Phonemic transcription
  • The syllable
  • Word stress
  • Connected speech
  • Intonation


  • 14 one-hour lectures
  • 14 two-hour seminars
  • one tutorial


  • Phonology exam, 3 hours (37.5%)
  • Grammar exam, 2 hours (37.5%)
  • Presentation, 10 minutes (25%)