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Past Virtual Seminars

Expanding and Condensing Information in Advanced English Grammar


Anne Ediger


Friday, 16 October 2015
10:30 am–12:00 pm ET
(Find the start time in your area.)


Cost: Free for members and nonmembers
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Registration Deadline: 13 October 2015
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Thank you to TESOL's grammar partner.

Who Should Attend?

Content will focus on grammar instruction at the secondary, higher education, and adult levels. This webinar will be of interest to

  • ESL/EFL grammar teachers
  • curriculum developers
  • program coordinators

More About This Seminar

This is the last of four webinars on issues in teaching and learning grammar for facilitating academic language development. It builds on concepts and information presented in the three previous webinars, which looked at recent findings from corpus grammar research and the close interrelationship of vocabulary and grammar knowledge to find important tools for teaching grammar:

As students progress in their language development, they need to understand and express increasingly complex ideas and relationships between ideas. An earlier webinar in this series showed how information can be added both before and after a head noun or pronoun to expand it into a complex noun phrase. This presentation looks at how to both add and condense information in other parts of a sentence—in the verb phrase and at the complex sentence level

It begins by clarifying basic concepts like phrases, clauses, and sentences and then shows how complex ideas can be communicated more efficiently in academic writing by expanding and “contracting” them.

Areas that cause ESL/EFL students difficulty are identified, and specific examples of common student-produced language samples will be provided.

Finally, suggestions and helpful exercises for addressing these difficulties will be provided for teachers interested in helping students understand and produce complex ideas.

What Will I Learn?

Participants learn

  • how do we add information to parts of a sentence other than noun phrases?
  • how are phrases, clauses, and sentences different? What are the minimum requirements of a sentence?
  • what are some of the different ways we can expand simple ideas in language into more complex ones? How can we recognize these, and what are some of the signals we can teach students to watch out for?
  • how can language in complex sentences be condensed to express complex ideas in academic writing more efficiently?
  • what are some areas of sentence structure that cause students particular difficulty? How can teachers address these difficulties without falling into common pitfalls when teaching about complex sentence structure?

About the Presenter

Anne Ediger is a co-author of the four-volume ESL grammar series, Elements of Success: Grammar for Language Learning, among other books and articles. She is currently professor and coordinator of the TESOL MA Program at Hunter College, of the City University of New York. She holds a doctorate in applied linguistics from the University of California, Los Angeles, and has taught in ESL/EFL teacher education in New York, California, Japan, Korea, Mexico, and Vietnam. Her recent research focuses on the development of language knowledge by novice teachers.​