A look at contemporary English, particularly vocabulary, including:

  • The relentless flow of new words
  • How society is changing language and everyday usage
  • Lingua franca – words around the world
  • Is slang taking over English?
  • Are standards falling?

There is a constant stream of new words entering the varieties of English around the world. Words is an attempt to keep you up to date as well as discuss some of the issues of contemporary English usage.

The topics covered in the morning session include:

  • A celebration of 100 years of the concise Oxford English Dictionary
  • New society, new vocabulary – an examination of the flow of new words in English
  • What were the key words in the noughties in the major English speaking countries.
  • What new words entered English in 2011?
  • What vocabulary do we need for teaching English today?

Questions that will be answered in the afternoon include:

  • The history of slang. What are the quirks and fancies of slang in different Englishes around the world?
  • What is today’s definition of slang? Is slang taking over?
  • What slang do we need to know for the classroom?
  • Political correctness and why our students should take heed!
  • The majority of English usage is between non-native speakers. How are attitudes changing to English as the lingua franca?

There will also be a presentation:

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. In just 45 minutes, Nicholas will take you on a whistle-stop tour of the trends in English.

Course material

There is a set of notes to accompany the course