What separates good English speakers from very good ones?


Research output: Other contributionOther contributions


This lecture will explore various aspects of the English language where high-level Chinese learners have concerns about usage, or even unknowingly make mistakes. We will examine some of the peculiarities of English pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary with a special focus on the unique usages of Chinese speakers. To provide one example, the word “besides” tends to be often used by Chinese speakers in a way that most native English speakers would perceive as strange. The overuse of words such as “first” (先) and “already” (已經) by Chinese speakers are two other examples that reflect the type of English often used (in an unusual sense) by highly proficient Chinese speakers when they communicate in English. In sum, we will cover a wide range of issues related to the English language as it is used here in Hong Kong. Participants are encouraged to bring their own questions about English to the lecture for discussion.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2016


Stapleton, P. (2016, March). What separates good English speakers from very good ones?. Seminars conducted at The English you didn't learn in school IV: Making grammar meaningful, The Hong Kong Institute of Education, China.


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