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AMEP Research Centre

ACCESS to English

ACCESS to English
By Catherine du Peloux Menagé and Kristine Brown
Published by the National Centre for English Teaching and Research
ISBN 1864 083 220 RRP $49.95 (with video $90)

At its best with the companion video, Access to English provides examples of everyday situations designed to enable students studying English as a second language to negotiate oral transactions to obtain information or to engage in a transaction for goods or services and read a short informative text. Suited to students at the Intermediate level (ASLPR 1-1+ or CSWE II or III), the content provides students with strongly situated scenarios with an emphatically transactional focus. It's worth noting too, that du Peloux Menagé and Brown have paid sensible attention to some of the more interpersonal nuances, friendliness, politeness, and so on, that, as they say, 'oil the social wheels'.
Materials are drawn appropriately from actual instances as much as possible. Take the highly useful process of establishing the multiple meanings (and multiplying levels of meaning!) in reading a pharmaceutical label on an over-the-counter drug container. Reading this kind of text is a worthwhile exercise in its own right, whether your students have English as a second language or not. The 'archaeology' of language that uncovers many of the assumptions embedded in the language of transactional-type texts is an interesting field for any language student. Have a look at the aspirin container in your bathroom cupboard. In the meantime, give Access to English some considered attention.
Educare News, Feb 2002