Why bother teaching Business English ?

Discussion on teaching Business English

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mrubs
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Why bother teaching Business English ?

Unread post by mrubs » 30 Mar 2012, 15:55

I believe most studies have shown that "academic writing" exhibits a higher percentage of passive voice compared to other types of English. Setting that aside, there are no other significantly different characteristics among English "types", regardless of the content area. You can disagree with that if you like. However, I'm unaware of any research which would support another view.

Here's my question.

What then is "Business English?" Are you doing content based ESL with "business" as your content? Seems to me there may be a bit of the old flim flam operating here. Are your students aware that the English language is the English language regardless of whether or not you're discussing business or the movies? Other than concentrating on vocabulary and jargon that appears with higher frequency in "business" discussions, what makes business English different than English for Medical Purposes?

This is not an attack. Please don't take it as such. I'm just curious about your take on this.
Last edited by josef on 31 Mar 2012, 07:46, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: typo

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Alex Case
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Re: Why bother teaching Business English ?

Unread post by Alex Case » 03 Apr 2012, 20:48

Yes, English is just English, but none of our students are ever going to learn the whole of English. That means that for every student their priorities are different, and one very wide ranging generalisation you can make is that some students mainly need English for business (although many of them actually need English for Health and Safety, etc, as is the topic of a book I've just received). There is a whole ESP (English for Specific Purposes) approach to teaching which is very different from the CELTA approach, and part of it is working out what their specific needs are and planning a course around it.

If you are genuinely interested, may I suggest a qualification in the topic:
http://www.tefl.net/tefl-courses/faq-te ... nglish.htm

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mrubs
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Re: Why bother teaching Business English ?

Unread post by mrubs » 14 Apr 2012, 20:14

How can i thanks you ?
I like your suggestion, You are really a nice person. If i face any problem I will knock you.
Thanks again.

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clouthier
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Re: Why bother teaching Business English ?

Unread post by clouthier » 15 May 2012, 23:08

Thanks to Alex for given this informative link, thanks to mrubs also for asking this question.
I was confused and i was looking for this solutions.

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Humphries
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Re: Why bother teaching Business English ?

Unread post by Humphries » 07 Mar 2015, 15:51

Business English can be a pain if people expect you to help them with their jargon, which is often too technical.

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Awalls86
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Re: Why bother teaching Business English ?

Unread post by Awalls86 » 13 Mar 2015, 14:28

Further to the previous answer, essentially the vocabulary and functions involved in business are different (perhaps more narrowly defined) than for general English. Ultimately though the students do still need general English. I did see a joke where someone was teaching the Present Perfect when a student complained it was a business English class and so they changed the example from "I have lived" to "I have worked".

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Lola212
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Re: Why bother teaching Business English ?

Unread post by Lola212 » 17 Apr 2016, 19:55

Great ideas here, thank you so much for posting.

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