English for Diplomacy

Report
English for Diplomacy
February 22, 2013
Course Information
Contact Information:
Office: 271305
[email protected]
[email protected]
2939-3091 x51305
Website:
http://www3.nccu.edu.tw/~lorenzo/
Office
I am not available on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday
mornings due to classes.
I will always be in my office (with a few rare
exceptions) on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday
afternoons.
I may also (but also may not) be on campus on
Mondays and Thursdays.
You can either drop by during one of these times or
send me an email to arrange a specific time to meet
if you wish.
Course Information
Course Description:
This course is designed for students in Diplomacy to improve
their overall English ability in terms of writing, reading
comprehension, and speaking.
Readings focus on international affairs, current events and
technical documents such as reports, regulations and
legislation.
Students will read, assess and speak about different kinds of
materials in English to grasp how English materials operate in
different contexts relevant to diplomacy. They will also study
terms and concepts associated with diplomacy.
Course Information
Course Objectives:
Improvement in English writing, reading,
comprehension and speaking; improved ability to
summarize English texts in English; improved
ability to understand different types of English
texts; improved ability to write different types of
English documents; improved familiarity with
important English terms and concepts associated
with diplomacy.
Course Information
Texts:
G.R. Berridge, Alan James, Lorna Lloyd, The Palgrave
Macmillan Dictionary of Diplomacy. Palgrave Macmillan, 3rd
edition, ISBN 978-0230302990
(available as an electronic book through the NCCU library)
Grades:
Midterm: 30%
Final: 25%
In-class participation: 25%
Vocabulary quizzes: 20%
Vocabulary
Every week I will provide the class with a list of 10-12 vocabulary
words from the Dictionary of Diplomacy.
Students are to look up these words in the Dictionary of
Diplomacy and memorize their definitions (i.e., generally the first
sentence of the entry and then any other very important information.
You do not need to memorize all the material in the entry,
particularly background material)
The following week, I will give a quiz on the words provided in the
prior week. Questions regarding vocabulary words will also be on the
midterm and final examinations.
Example
The entry for “amendment” in the Dictionary is as follows:
Amendment. A formal change to a provision in a treaty or
other document. Some multi-lateral treaties contain special
procedures for making amendments; in their absence, those
stipulated in Article 40 of the Vienna Convention on the
Law of Treaties (1969) must be followed
What you need to memorize: Amendment: A formal change to a
provision in a treaty or other document, generally governed by the
Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties
Vocabulary List (quiz on these next
week)
 Accredited diplomatic representative.
 Activities incompatible with diplomatic status.
 Adjudication
 Adoption
 Aggression
 Air Force One
 Air space
 Alliance
 All necessary means
 Amendment
Some English Grammar Review
Some important things to remember:
Unlike Chinese dialects, tonality in English is not used to
differentiate different words, but to indicate the meaning of
sentences:
Rising tones generally indicate a question Sometimes, however,
questions can also be asked orally without rising tones; context
here is important.
A question in written form is indicated by a question mark (?)
and also sometimes written through the use of particular
interrogatory words (Who, what, when, why)
A sentence without a question mark is not a question.
English
Different tones or stresses in a sentence usually indicate that
particular words are being stressed, thus changing the meaning
of the sentence:
I didn’t know he wanted to buy that.
Note that such changes generally are not indicated in written
form, though they occasionally are so indicated by the use of
bolding, italics or underlining:
I didn’t know he wanted to buy that.
English
The use of bolding, italics or underlining in formal writing is
quite rare and only used to strongly emphasize some word, phrase
or concept.
You don’t want to write sentences that look like this:
Please let me know as soon as possible regarding the STATUS of
the contract!!!
Doing so makes you look like an old lady from the 19th century,
or someone who learned how to write from Facebook.
(Note also the use of exclamation points, which again should
only very rarely used and never in multiple form).
Gender and Number
Unlike Chinese dialects, pronouns indicate gender (male,
female and neuter). Be sure to match the correct gender of the
pronoun to prior nouns and names; otherwise confusion will
result:
John generally doesn’t like to read. She has great difficulty in
seeing the word on the page.
Fortunately, unlike languages such as Russian, gender only
applies to names and pronouns and does not affect the
formation of verbs or adjectives.
Number
While number does not affect the formation of adjectives, it
does affect the formation of verbs, so you must be careful to
match nouns and pronouns with auxiliary verbs:
They was reading a book.
He were riding his bike.
Note also that I takes a particular type of auxiliary in the
present tense:
We are going to the lake.
He is going to the lake.
I am going to the lake.
Contractions
While contractions are acceptable forms of speech, they
generally are not often used in formal writing.
Therefore, you should avoid most of the common
contractions when writing formal letters, reports,
invitations, etc.:
Don’t, won’t, couldn’t, shouldn’t (“not” contractions”
He’s, she’s (i.e., short for he is, she is, etc.)
They’re, we’re (“are” contractions)
These should also generally be avoided in most formal
speaking situations (speeches, conversations with high
officials).
Informal Language, Slang
Consider this sentence:
I ain’t got no cigarettes.
What, if anything, is wrong with it?
Would you ever use it in formal speech or writing?
Would you ever hear it used?
Correct these sentences
She likes to hunt and fishing.
Last night I read for hours, and then several pages were written by
me.
This book is interesting, instructive, and it is also important.
Father does not approve of Jack and me joining a labor union.
Bill and me are going to the movies.
The manager called Tom and I into the board room.
Who are you planning to fire?
Each one of the Utopian Socialists are insane
Neither Malthus nor Ricardo are in favor of birth control.
Bound in beautiful red leather, Pierre received a volume of Marx's
Das Kapital for his birthday.
Useful websites
 http://www.umsl.edu/~keelr/rok/grammar.html
 http://www.copyblogger.com/grammar-goofs/
 http://www.writing.utoronto.ca/advice/style-
and-editing/hit-parade-of-errors

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