Common Errors 


  Recommended by Thomas Nash and Yun-Pi Yuan

 ~ from Tom
In the Materials: 
  • There's an old one Room by 金陵.  
  • Practical English Usage and Basic English Usage, both by Michael Swan, Oxford UP
  • A reference grammar for students of English, R.A. Close, Longman 

  • (these three are all in the reference books section). 
These are very useful because not all errors learners make come from their native language; many errors are common to anyone learning the same language, in this case English.  There is some
controversy here, but the general consensus is that developmental, intralingual errors (the second type) are significantly more numerous than interlingual errors (the first type, influence or "interference" from the first language). 

Learner English: A Teacher's Guide to Interference and Other Problems  by Michael Swan (Editor), Bernard Smith (Editor)
Learner English/Audio Cassette (Cambridge Handbooks for  Language Teachers)
                     by Michael Swan 
"A supplement to a description and explanation of the most important pronunciation, grammar,
   vocabulary and usage mistakes made by learners from varied language backgrounds."

~ from Yun-Pi
1. Longman Dictionary of Common Errors (by J. B. Heaton and N. D. Turton; the Crane)

2. Common Mistakes in Written Eng. (by K.K. Wong; HK: Youth Bookroom, 1989)

3. Speak Better Eng.: A Guide to Common Mistakes and Useful Expressions (by Wallace W. Smith, 學生英文雜誌社. 1986)

4. The Rights and Wrongs of Eng. (by James St. Andre & 蘇正隆 ; The Bookman, 1992)

5. Common Mistakes of Chinese Students in Eng. Usage (by Mark and Deborah Canning, The Crane: 1986)

  (I didn't  agree with some of their corrections; for instance, they said we should say, "I live on Taiwan," because Taiwan is an island,  whereas I say "I live in Taiwan," because Taiwan is a political entity, and that's how I think of it, not in geographic terms as an
island.  Tom)
6. Common Eng. Errors of Chinese Students (by David Bunton.  Longman: 1989; available in the Crane)

7. Common Spoken Eng. Errors of Chinese Students (by Joseph and Linda Boyle.  Longman: 1991; available in the Crane)

8. Dictionary of Problem Words for Students of Eng. (by Eugene J. Hall.  The Bookman: 1996)

Some Recent Articles on

 "native" and "nonnative" speakers and their roles in teaching English

Thomas Nash

A number of articles in the TESOL Quarterly in the last few years have addressed questions regarding "native" and "nonnative" speakers and their roles in teaching English, and these articles make quite interesting and thought-provoking reading.  The TESOL Quarterly is available in the library.  I list the articles for your reference:

Vol. 31. No. 3, Autumn 1997
Leung, C., Harris, R., and Rampton, B.  "The Idealised Native Speaker, Reified Ethnicities, and Classroom Realities."   543- 560.

Tang, C. "On the Power and Status of Nonnative ESL Teachers."  577-580. 

Amin, N. "Race and the Identity of the Nonnative ESL Teacher."  580-583.

Pao, D.L., Wong, S.D., and Teuben-Rowe, S.  "Identity Formation for Mixed-Heritage Adults and Implications for Educators." 622-631.

[And other articles in this special issue on Language and Identity]

Vol. 33, No. 1, Spring 1999
Liu, J. "Nonnative-English-Speaking Professionals in TESOL."  85-102.  [Accessible for students]

Vol. 33, No. 2, Summer 1999
Cook, V. "Going Beyond the Native Speaker in Language Teaching."  185-209.  [A good place to begin; accessible to students]

Vol. 33, No. 3, Autumn 1999
Brutt-Griffler, J. and Samimy, K.K. "Revisitng the Colonial in the Postcolonial: Critical Praxis for
Nonnative-English-Speaking Teachers in a TESOL Program." 413-431.

Vol. 34, No. 1, Spring 2000
Flowerdew, J. "Discourse Community, Legitimate Peripheral Participation, and the Nonnative-English-Speaking Scholar."

[The first article in this issue, on age and L2 learning, is easy to read, accessible to our students, and clarifies (if you agree with their conclusions) important points about age]

Vol. 34, No. 2, Summer 2000
Milambiling, J. "How Nonnative Speakers as Teachers Fit Into the Equation." 324-328.

Mattix, M. "Going Further Beyond the Native Speaker Model: A Remark Concerning Language Models." 328-329. 

Cook, V. "The Author Responds . . ." 329-332.