英文寫作所需的詞彙語塊(lexical chunks)

When teaching writing, language instructors often focus on language subskills such as drafting and revising. They may even go into the specifics and talk about what constitutes a good topic sentence and how to improve coherence and cohesion. These are all crucial writing subskills to learn. However, while students can quickly learn strategies and steps to so-called effective writing, they often lack the basic language knowledge needed to employ these subskills. They may, for example, need to learn the lexical chunks and the grammatical knowledge needed to structure their sentences.

寫作教學時,語言老師時常關注於諸如打草稿與修改等子技能(subskills)。他們甚至可能會深入細節,並討論什麼是好的主題句(topic sentence),以及如何提升語意邏輯的銜接性與字句的連貫性(coherence and cohesion)。這些都是寫作上需要學習的重要技能。然而,雖然學生可以快速地學習這些所謂有效的寫作策略和步驟,但他們往往缺乏運用這些子技能所需的基本語言知識。舉例來說,他們可能需要學習構建句子所需的詞彙語塊(lexical chunks)以及文法知識(grammatical knowledge)。

Students may know that when paraphrasing, they need to begin at a different point in the sentence, use synonyms, and change the structure of the sentence. Writing instructors often teach these steps but often neglect to teach students to focus on the language itself.

例如,學生可能知道何時要改寫(paraphrase)——他們需著眼於文句中的不同點,使用同義詞,並改變句子的結構。老師教授這些步驟,但卻往往忽略了引導學生去關注語言本身。


Take this paraphrase as an example.

以這句改述為例。

原文: The global textile industry is producing more than ever before, but shifts from conventional materials to lower-impact alternatives have stagnated, according to a report published Wednesday by non-profit Textile Exchange.

學生改述: Textile Exchange published report say the global textile industry produce the highest, however, transferring conventional materials instead lower-impact substitutes have stalled (Deely, 2012).


We can see that the student has already tried to change the order of ideas and used synonyms. However, continually teaching this student “how" to paraphrase will not help him improve his writing. What the student needs are the collocations and even bigger idiomatic lexical chunks needed to encode his thoughts.

我們可以看到,這位同學已試著改變句構及語序,也使用了同義詞。然而,不斷地教這位學生「如何」改寫,並不能幫助他提升寫作能力。這位同學所缺乏的,是搭配詞(collocations),甚至是更大的慣用詞彙語塊(idiomatic lexical chunks)來正確地表達他的想法。

Knowledge of whether specific nouns can be paired with the verb “stall," for example, is needed in this student sample. “Stall" here means to stop making progress or developing. Nouns that could be paired with “stall" include effort, progress, process, project, and even career.

例如,這位學生需要知道某些名詞是否能與動詞 「stall」 做搭配。「stall」在此的意思是停止進步或發展。可以和「stall」搭配的名詞包括「effort(努力)、 progress(進步)、process(過程)、project(計畫)」,甚至是「 career」(職涯)。

Using “instead" is also erroneous as it should be “A instead of B." There are also word-choice errors: using “transferring" and “substitutes" to replace “shift" and “alternatives." These words may be close in meaning, but they do not serve the same functions in this context. Look them up in the dictionary.

上述改寫中,「instead」的用法有誤。因為,應該要使用「A instead of B」。其中,也有詞彙選用(word-choice)的問題,像是使用 「transferring」 和「substitutes」 來取代 「shift」 和 「alternatives」。這些字的意思可能很接近,但在這個語境中它們的功能並不相同。同學可以試著在字典中查找這些詞彙的區別。

However, even if we were to correct these lexical errors, the sentence would still suffer from syntactic errors. The conjunction “however," for example, is not used correctly. There are also verb tense and subject-verb agreement errors. These errors are seldom singled out in writing lessons, so students continuously make them without knowing their existence. Without explicit corrective feedback, students may continue to rely on translation and use their knowledge of their first language (L1) and target language (L2) to create a new set of codes (interlanguage) that others cannot so easily understand.

然而,即使我們改正了這些詞彙上的錯誤(lexical errors),上述文句仍有句法上的錯誤(syntactic errors)。比如,連接詞「however」 的使用並不正確。其中,亦有動詞時態與主詞不一致的錯誤。這些錯誤在寫作課中很少被挑出來,所以學生仍會持續犯錯而不自知。如果沒有明確的修正性回饋(corrective feedback),學生可能會持續依賴翻譯,並使用他們對於母語(L1)與目標語言(L2)的知識,去創造其他人不易理解的一組新代碼——中間語言(interlanguage)。

The solution to these problems is not straightforward, as each student’s writing needs to be carefully analyzed before advice can be given. One general piece of advice is that English learners ought to learn words in bigger high-frequency lexical chunks. For example, rather than learning “economy" and “growth," students can learn topic-related chunks such as “economic growth," “rapid economic growth," or even the longer “experience rapid economic growth." More information can be added to help students recall and be able to use the phrase in an authentic context.

這些問題並不好解決,因為在給出建議前,寫作老師須仔細分析每個學生的文章。我的建議是,在學習新字詞時,英語學習者可以在更大的高頻詞彙語塊中學習。舉例來說,與其學習「economy」和「growth」,學生可以學習與主題相關的語塊,例如「economic growth」、「rapid economic growth」,甚至更長的「experience economic growth」。可以添加更多資訊來幫助學生記憶,並能夠在真實情境中使用該片語。

In addition, cross-disciplinary set phrases and sentence starters such as “according to," “switch from A to B," and “efforts to…" should be continuously used to connect ideas. Last, grammar points should be emphasized through corrective feedback and clear, explicit instruction, so students can learn to understand and correct systematic errors. To help students improve their writing, instructors can use intensive and extensive reading along with focused and meaningful writing tasks.

此外,應不斷使用跨領域的片語組以及句子開頭慣用語,如「according to… 」(根據⋯⋯)、「switch from A to B」(從A轉換到B)與「efforts to… 」(努力去⋯⋯)來連接想法。最後,應該透過修正性回饋來強調文法要點,加上清晰明確的指導,讓學生學會理解與改正系統性的錯誤。再搭配精讀(intensive reading)、博覽(extensive reading)以及清晰且有意義的寫作任務,學生的寫作能力才可以開始進步。

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Out of curiosity, how could the following passage be paraphrased? Leave a comment 🙂

很好奇同學會如何改寫下面這段文字?歡迎到下方留言,與我們分享你的改寫內容,我也將分享我的版本。

原文: The global textile industry is producing more than ever before, but shifts from conventional materials to lower-impact alternatives have stagnated, according to a report published Wednesday by non-profit Textile Exchange.

Reference

Deeley, R. (2012, June 12). Fashion is using more raw materials than ever. Not enough are sustainable. Business of Fashion.
https://www.businessoffashion.com/news/sustainability/sustainable-preferred-fibres-textile-exchange-recycled-polyester-cotton/


📌 若對我的學術詞彙課程與新聞英文課程(運用了英文詞塊學習方法)感興趣,或可參考以下的連結:

心智圖詞彙攻略: http://voicetu.be/4k5l8h

[時事英文新聞] Capital Punishment

death penalty

[時事英文] Capital Punishment 死刑

最近廢除死刑議題又再度引發社會激烈的討論 (好像每幾年就會有一次)。不管大家觀點如何,希望以下重新整理的一些資訊可以幫同學學習英文,關心社會大事及更了解此議題。


以下提供「中華民國法務部有關廢除死刑之政策」的前言(中英版) 和執行死刑的支持與反對論點的相關的英文單字及短文,目的是希望幫助各位不論是在英文口說上更得心應手,另外了解正反兩方的觀點也才能讓各位的辯證更有說服力。

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The policy of the Ministry of Justice, Taiwan with regard to abolition of the death penalty

中華民國法務部有關廢除死刑之政策

The death penalty, with its basis in the theory of retribution, uses state power to deprive convicted criminals of their right to live and separate them from society forever. Since capital punishment is cruel and goes against the notion that punishment should encompass education, the abolition of the death penalty has gradually become a global trend. Many democratic and industrialized countries have completely or conditionally abolished the death penalty.

•basis 基礎、根據
•the theory of retribution 應報理論、報應主義
•state power 國家公權力
•deprive 剝奪、奪走
•convicted criminals (被判有罪的)罪犯
•the right to live 生命權
•go against the notion that…
不符…的主張、反對…的概念
•encompass 具有;包含、包括
•the abolition of… 廢除…
•a global trend 世界潮流
•conditionally 有條件地
•abolish (v.) the death penalty 廢除死刑

死刑起源於報應主義,係以國家公權力剝奪罪犯生命權,使其永久與社會隔離,由於手段殘酷,不符刑罰亦具教化之主張,故廢除死刑已漸是世界潮流,許多民主先進國家已廢除死刑或有條件的廢除死刑。


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Whether to completely do away with the death penalty depends on the development of society, the maturity of concepts of law and order, and popular consensus and support. In opinion polls in recent years, around 80% of respondents have consistently opposed the abolition of the death penalty. Opposition falls to 40%, however, if complementary measures such as increases in upper sentencing limits and the threshold for parole for life imprisonment are included.

•do away with sth 全面廢除某事
•depend on… 視…決定
•the development of society 社會發展
•the maturity of… …的成熟度
•the concepts of law and order 法治觀念
•popular consensus and support 民眾之共識與支持
•an opinion poll 民意調查
•respondent 受訪者、回答者
•opposition (n.) (強烈的)反對,反抗,對抗
•complementary measures 配套措施
•upper sentencing limits 提高有期徒刑上限
•the threshold for… …的門檻
•parole 有條件釋放,假釋
•life imprisonment 無期徒刑、終身監禁

惟是否全面廢除死刑,應視社會發展、法治觀念是否成熟及民眾之共識與支持。根據歷年來所做之相關民意調查,民眾對我國廢止死刑之意見,始終約有百分之八十的受訪者表示反對。但如有相關配套措施,例如提高有期徒刑上限、無期徒刑假釋門檻等,反對意見則約下降至百分之四十。

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Evidently, with consideration of complementary measures and education, public support for retribution may be reoriented and a general consensus formed on the gradual abolition of the death penalty. The Ministry of Justice will employ extensive discussion and research to form a popular consensus for abolition, and only then propose the necessary amendments to existing laws to extend human rights protection while maintaining public security.

•with consideration of 考量到…

•public support for sth 公眾對…的支持
•retribution (n.) 報應、報復
•reorient 重新定位
•a general consensus 普遍共識
•employ (v.) extensive discussion 進行廣泛討論
•form (v.) a popular consensus 形成大眾共識
•propose 提出、提議
•amendment 修正案;修改,修訂
•existing laws 現行法
•human rights protection 人權保障
•maintain public security 維護治安

顯然地,考量到配套措施和教育,民眾可能會重新定位對於支持應報的想法,並形成逐步廢除死刑的普遍共識。法務部將會透過廣泛討論與研究,凝聚多數民眾支持廢除死刑之共識後,才會提出廢除死刑的法律修正案,以兼顧人權之保障及治安之維護。可見如有配套措施,並透過教育導正民眾報復思想,應可逐步凝聚廢除死刑之社會共識。

文章出處: https://bit.ly/3RyWGtL


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📌 Pros and Cons of the Death Penalty 死刑的利與弊


Arguments commonly made for supporting the death penalty are:

一般常會被用來支持死刑應該存在的論點如下:

To serve as an example to other would-be criminals, to deter them from committing murder or terrorist acts

會對那些相當可能犯案的潛在罪犯產生警示的作用,並阻止他們犯下任何謀殺或恐怖行為。

To punish the criminal for his/her act

由於他們的犯罪行為,給予懲罰。

To obtain retribution on behalf of the victims


基於受害者的權益,罪犯應當得到相對的懲罰。

Arguments Against 反駁論點

Arguments commonly made to abolish the death penalty are:

一般常會被用來支持死刑應該被廢除的論點如下:

Death constitutes “cruel and unusual punishment" and the various means used by the state to kill a criminal are cruel.

死刑的構成其實是殘暴而且不尋常的處罰,再者,目前國家執行死刑的方式,有很多都是非常殘忍的。

The death penalty is used disproportionately against the poor, who cannot afford expensive legal counsel, as well as against racial, ethnic and religious minorities.


相對於金字塔頂端的富人,由於那些貧窮的社會階層根本負擔不起昂貴的律師費用,死刑的執行對於他們而言,完全不成比例,另一方面,其實那些種族、少數民族和宗教等弱勢團體也面臨著類似的問題。

Wrongly convicted, innocent people have received death penalty sentences, and tragically, were killed by the state.

法律上誤判的狀況,也會導致無辜的人們被判處死刑,因而不幸地被國家殺害。

A rehabilitated criminal can make a morally valuable contribution to society.

一位改過自新的罪犯,其實也能就道德層面當中,對這個社會有一些難能可貴的貢獻。


 📌 請同學把自己覺得會用到的字寫在筆記本,並且在適當情境中盡量使用這些片話。不確定如何使用就務必要查詢! 不需要硬背每一個單字。

Please do not attempt to memorize every vocabulary word at once: https://bit.ly/3APzu5e

Image source: http://goo.gl/Nyv78y


心智圖詞彙攻略報名: ericvocab.com