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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A deeper understanding of grammar
As a humble ESL teacher, not a linguist, this was my first experience of a linguistics approach to grammar. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is somewhat familiar with standard grammar textbooks and would like to pursue a deeper, more exploratory approach to the subject.

At first I was surprised by some of the terminology until I switched into the...
Published 11 months ago by MichaelH

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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not very useful
This book disappointed me greatly. I do not like the author’s approach to grammar and do not think this approach is helpful for speakers of other languages learning English.
Published 13 months ago by Renata


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A deeper understanding of grammar, 28 July 2013
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This review is from: A Student's Introduction to English Grammar (Paperback)
As a humble ESL teacher, not a linguist, this was my first experience of a linguistics approach to grammar. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is somewhat familiar with standard grammar textbooks and would like to pursue a deeper, more exploratory approach to the subject.

At first I was surprised by some of the terminology until I switched into the critical and descriptive mindset. This book starts to look at the logic of language which underlies the so-called grammar rules found in textbooks. In a way, it actually simplifies one's understanding of grammar (in a positive sense) because, rather than an endless list of apparently arbitrary rules and exceptions for different situations, it provides an outline description of why those rules are the way they are.

I don't think it would be possible to use this material directly in teaching, because it requires the fine sensibility of an educated native speaker to appreciate some of the nuances, and the technical language of linguistics-based grammar theory is different to that of the textbook grammar theory with which ESL students are familiar. However, the critical approach is extremely useful for ESL teachers because it can help us clarify our own understanding of the language points we are trying to teach. Understanding the language structures at a deeper level than that at which we are teaching them can only be helpful. It makes the clarification stage of grammar teaching more natural and effortless.

The book is written in a beautifully functional but relaxed style. It provides a critical and intelligent overview of English grammar categories from the perspective of two cutting-edge linguists. Geoffrey Pullum, by the way, is known elsewhere for his highly amusing and cynical essays on the world of linguistics and publishing. Apart from its superlative content, A Student's Introduction to English Grammar is also a testament to the stylistic versatility of the authors.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very useful introductory grammar text, 14 Jan 2013
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This review is from: A Student's Introduction to English Grammar (Paperback)
I recently used this book as a supplementary text to help me plan and teach a introduction to grammar unit on an English Linguistics module for aspiring English Language teachers and found it very useful indeed. As the key text for the module had already been selected, I included it as a further reading source for students to consult. Feedback from the students was very positive and they liked the descriptions and end of unit exercises.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent condition, very accessible., 1 July 2012
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This review is from: A Student's Introduction to English Grammar (Paperback)
This is a very useful source book. Any time I am stuck with a definition/explanation this book is on hand to give a simple overview. Definitely recommend it to any studying English grammar
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not very useful, 10 Jun 2013
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This review is from: A Student's Introduction to English Grammar (Paperback)
This book disappointed me greatly. I do not like the author’s approach to grammar and do not think this approach is helpful for speakers of other languages learning English.
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1 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Avoid if your not a Professor of English., 8 Mar 2013
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This review is from: A Student's Introduction to English Grammar (Paperback)
I purchased this book to aid in my preparation for my English Exams soley from the above recommendations. The book starts off very well but descends quickly into complete and total gobbledegook. In sheer frustration I turned to the glossary at the back but that was even worse. For example:

"Vowel - speech sound produced with unimpeded smooth airflow through the mouth"

It says exactly the same for Consonants. In my meer students mind a vowel is AEIOU and consonants anything that isn't a vowel. Other glossary terms are as bad if not worse, it will totally befuddle you mind. They introduce new jargon in bold and then include other words with no relationship in bold, just like a magician thinking up a spell as they go along.

This book, as usual, is written by teachers for teachers and is in no way for students and should be titled as such. The authors forgot the plot and to KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid). It is positively dangerous and could easily put off any student.

The book is forever saying this is how the authors do it, but that isn't how traditional English Grammar says it is to be done. Well we want to learn the STANDARD and not their whim. If the authors cannot get even the basics right then this book should be for the bin.

Unless your a degree student with a Professor close at hand, then avoid this book like the plague. Oh and for the those at University the book has no conclusion section at the end of each chapter so triples the work load.

The only way this book will improve your English Grammar is by you doing research to correct it's blatant errors, which are very much hidden in the sheer amount of junk jargon used.

If you want to see this book then borrow a friends or from the library and give it back extremely quickly. The only thing it did for me was to make me doubt what I had already done in class. It is truely appauling, and I wonder the intentions of the other reviewers and doubt if they even read or used the book at all.

I so highly DO NOT Recommend this book, it should be left in the back of the Library never ever to see the light of day.
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A Student's Introduction to English Grammar
A Student's Introduction to English Grammar by Geoffrey K. Pullum (Paperback - 17 Feb 2005)
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