Collocations and Advanced Learners
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What makes Advanced learners Advanced learners is most notably their ability to use language naturally. What this means is producing language in lexical chunks which are appropriate and relevant for the context they are in. Collocations play a big part in this. Having a thorough knowledge of collocations allows learners to sound more native-like and less learner-like.
Why do Advanced learners need collocations?
Advanced level learners are often at a plateau. It might not be as obvious as the one the majority of students experience at Intermediate level, but it’s there nonetheless. By the time students get to Advanced they have learnt the same grammar points in their EFL lessons for years and they have spoken about the same topics again and again and again. It is not surprising that a lot of Advanced learners are tired of the learning process.
Plus, Advanced learners can feel like they do not have much more to learn. By this stage they are competent communicators and perhaps do not need more language to communicate their ideas; they can convey their meaning using the language they already know. However, this strategy can hinder an Advanced learner’s learning because they will not challenge themselves and will forever stick to the language they know rather than learn new language.
This is where collocations come in, to give Advanced learners more variety in their language production and effectively to sound more natural.
How can Advanced learners learn collocations?
There is no magic formula for learning (or teaching) collocations. It all comes down to exposure, attention and usage. Extensive reading and the use of authentic texts in the classroom are great ways to ensure your Advanced learners will encounter collocations which will be useful to their own language production.
As the teacher, you can make sure your students are given relevant materials to deal with in the classroom. Plan consciousness-raising activities which bring the collocations to the students’ attention and show them the difference a collocation can make to their language. By doing this you will hopefully regain your students’ interest in the language and increase their motivation for learning.
Outside the classroom, the teacher can recommend resources which are available to the learners, and strategies on how to use them. This can include books, movies, TV shows, blogs and YouTube channels. Being exposed to authentic language on a regular basis will not only do wonders for a learner’s enthusiasm for the language but also for their language comprehension and production.
Collocations can be tricky to teach and a pain to learn, but the effect they have on language output more than makes up for the blood, sweat and tears put into learning them. Help your learners see the usefulness of collocations and the richness they will bring to their English, and use activities which make the most out of the materials you use in the classroom and your learners will soon find themselves using collocations naturally and effectively.
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Name of course Description Online Level 5 TEFL Course 168-hour Online Level 5 TEFL & grammar course (Plus three free 30-hour Top-Up Online Courses) Online Level 3 TEFL Course 120-hour Online Level 3 TEFL & grammar course (Plus three free 30-hour Top-Up Online Courses) Top-Up Courses 30-hour Online Teaching Young Learners, Teaching Business English and Teaching Online & 1:1 Courses 10hr Online Teaching Practice Course 10 hours of webinar teaching practice course (Learn about classroom management and Q&A with a TEFL expert)
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LAST UPDATED: 5th July 2022
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Personal information used for direct marketing
If we are using your personal information to send you direct marketing, you have the right to object at any time. If you exercise this right, we will stop processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes. However, we may keep your information on a “suppression list” to ensure your information is not added to any marketing lists at some point in the future.
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Exercising your rights concerning the processing of your personal information
If you wish to exercise any of the above rights concerning the way in which we process your personal information, please contact:
Risk Management Team
Everything TEFL Ltd
28 – 32 Pembroke Street,
Republic of Ireland
Telephone: +353 (1) 554 6227
Email: [email protected]
Your right to complain to a national data protection regulator (data protection supervisory authority)
- If you think we have processed your personal information unfairly or unlawfully, or we have not complied with your rights under GDPR, you have the right to complain to a national data protection regulator.
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