Info

To the student . 4

To the teacher 6

introduction 1 Formal or informal? 8

2 Missing words and abbreviations 10

3 Key phrases ' 12

Basics 4 Opening and closing 14

5 Giving news 16

6 Information,'action, help 18

7 Internal messages 20

8 Attachments 22

9 Arranging a meeting 24

10 Invitations and directions 26

11 Negotiating a project 28

12 Checking understanding 30

Language focus 13 Verb forms 32

14 Comparisons 34

15 Sentence structure 36

16 Common mistakes 38

17 Punctuation and spelling 40

Commercial 18 A customer-supplier sequence 42

19 Inquiries and orders 44

20 Discussing and agreeing terms 46

21 Asking for payment 48

22 Describing business trends 50

23 Cause, effect, contrast 52

Problems 24 Complaints 54

25 Apologies 56

Reports 26 Report structure and key phrases 58

27 Linking words and relative clauses 60

Direct/Indirect 28 Being direct and brief 62

29 Being indirect and polite 64

Personal 30 Being friendly 66

31 Advice and suggestions 68

32 Job application 70

Phrase bank 73

Answer key 85

Who is this book for?

Learners of English at intermediate or upper-intermediate level who want to write better emails. Learners studying on their own, or with a teacher.

Why was this book written?

In many English courses writing gets a low priority. Sometimes you do have a chance to practise some writing, but without a focus on emails. That is surprising, because emails are probably the most common type of written communication. Email English will give you the help you need to write effective emails.

Perhaps you think that it is not worth spending time on emails. They are informal, written quickly, and no-one minds if you make mistakes. Well, that is true for some emails, for example emails between close friends. But what about an email to someone where you want to make a good impression? Or what about an email where you want to be a bit more careful or more diplomatic than usual? Or what about an email in a professional context? It takes awareness and practice to write in a style that fits the context, and Email English has many exercises to help you do this.

How is the book organised?

Email English consists of thirty-two units of language practice and a phrase bank. The language practice covers a wide range of topics and includes a great variety of exercise types, such as practice of key phrases, awareness activities about different styles of writing and practice of general language structures. The phrase bank has useful expressions divided into sections. At the end of the book is an answer key.

How should I use this book?

Look at the contents page and you will see that there are various sections in the book. Start with the 'Introduction' units - you will get an idea of how email writing style is different from the style of a letter. Then complete the 'Basics' section. You will practice and learn common phrases for most typical short emails. After that you can work through the book in sequence, or you might prefer to do the units in another order, for example according to what type of emails you most frequently write.

Use the phrase bank as a reference when you write your own emails. The phrases in each section are presented in the most likely order that you will need them, so you get help with the structure of the email as well as the language.

By the time you finish Email English you will be much more confident at writing emails. Your emails will be right for the context: friendly and informal, or simple and direct, or polite and indirect, depending on what is best for the situation. And in general you will be able to express yourself more clearly, you will create a good image, and your writing will be easier to understand. Other people will want to know you better, as a friend or colleague or business partner.

What else can I do to practise writing emails?

Get feedback on the emails that you write in real life: if you know a friend whose English is better than yours, or a native speaker, then ask them to make comments on your writing. Also, study the English in the emails you receive. If you receive a well-written email, remember to look carefully at the language. Build your own phrase book: start your own bank of phrases from ones you have received in an email or ones you have written yourself.

If you want more help with grammar, we recommend Business Grammar Builder (Macmillan) by Paul Emmerson, the same author as this book.

General tips

Here are some general tips as a reminder for writing good emails:

• Use a 'subject line' that summarises briefly and clearly the content of the message. Your email may be one of hundreds on the recipient's computer, and you want them to read it when it arrives and then find it again easily in their files.

• Use short, simple sentences. Long sentences are often difficult to read and understand. The most common mistake for learners of English is to translate directly from their own language. Usually the result is a complicated, confusing sentence.

• One subject per email is best. The other person can reply to an email about one thing, delete it, and leave another email in their 'Inbox' that needs more time.

• Be very careful with jokes, irony, personal comments etc. Humour rarely translates well from one culture to another. And if you are angry, wait for 24 hours before you write. Once you press 'Send' you cannot get your email back. It can be seen by anyone and copied and sent round the world. The intimate, informal nature of email makes people write things that they shouldn't. Only write what you would be comfortable saying to the person's face.

• Take a moment to review and edit what you have written. Is the main point clear? Would some pieces of continuous text be better as bullet points or numbered points? Is it clear what action you want the recipient to take? Would you be happy to receive this email? If in doubt, ask a colleague to quickly look through and make comments.

• Don't ignore capital letters, punctuation, spelling, paragraphs, and basic grammar. It might be okay when you are writing to a very close friend, but to everyone else it's an important part of the image that you create. A careless, disorganised email shows the outside world a careless, disorganised mind.

• Use the replies you receive to modify your writing to the same person. If the recipient writes back in a more informal or more formal style, then match that in your future emails to them. If they use particular words or phrases that seem to come from their company culture, or professional area, then consider using those words yourself where they are appropriate.

• Be positive! Look at these words: activity, agreed, evolving, fast, good question, helpful, join us, mutual, productive, solve, team, together, took, useful. Now look at these: busy, crisis, failure, forget it, hard,

I can't, I won't, impossible, never, stupid, unavailable, waste. The words you use show your attitude to life. • ,

What is Email English1

Email En^ish is a book to help your students write better emails. It is aimed at intermediate or upper-intermediate level, and consists of 32 two-page units of language practice covering a very wide range of topics, a phrase bank of useful expressions divided into sections, and an answer key.

Email English includes exercises on email style, but also practises more conventional language areas such as fixed expressions, sentence structure, linking words, prepositions and verb tenses. Email English assumes that students already have approximately 'intermediate' level, and exercises are designed to review language at this level rather than present it for the first time. If your students want more help with grammar, we recommend Business Grammar Builder (Macmillan) by Paul Emmerson.

Why Email English?

Writing gets a low priority in many coursebooks, and very few give a systematic and comprehensive treatment of emails. This is surprising, because emails are by far the most common method of written communication, and writing emails is included in many examinations. Working through Email English will make your students much more confident in this area. They will be able to express themselves more clearly, their writing will be easier to understand, and they will be able to pass examination questions based on writing emails with much higher marks.

How can you use Email English in class?

Work through units 1-3 of Email English in sequence. After that, you can do the units in any order. Encourage your students to use the phrase bank as a reference for when they write their own emails. The phrases in each section are presented in the most likely order that a writer will need them, so the student gets help with the structure of the email as well as the language.

Free writing practice and the Email English website

Email English is designed for self-study as well as classroom use, so there is no 'free' writing practice in the book. This is convenient for teachers if you don't have time for a follow-up writing task. But if you do want to set a freer writing activity at the end of a unit, then we have included some suggested tasks on this website: www.businessenglishonIine.net. There are tasks for both working professionals, and for students in Higher Education who have little experience of the professional world. Encourage your students to write emails using a word processor, then they can go back and change it after they get your comments. Soon they will build up a bank of emails they have written. Also encourage them to bring in any well-written emails they receive, so you can study them in class together. From time to time also remind your students to look again at the 'General tips' on page 5.

Organising a writing task

The first choice that you have is students writing their emails in class or for homework. If students write in class you will be able to go round monitoring and helping. A word limit or time limit will help to focus the activity. As you circulate, note down any points that you think would be of interest to other students as well, and cover them in a short feedback slot with the whole class at the end.

When students finish writing they can hand in their work to you for marking, or work in pairs to improve each other's work, or use their ideas to build up a 'collective best version' on the board. Let's look at each option in more detail:

1 Teacher marks the students' work. You can give explicit correction by underlining and writing in the correct form. Alternatively, you can give guided correction by underlining only, perhaps with a hint in the margin, and asking students to try to correct their work themselves. The most challenging form of correction is to not underline any words, but to write a comment in the margin next to the appropriate line (e.g. 'verb tense', 'preposition', 'word order' or 'formality'). Students then work in pairs in the next class to help each other to respond to your comments. Don't forget to acknowledge good use of language in your feedback - a specific comment in the margin (Good use of this phrase), or a more general word of encouragement at the end (Very well written; A big improvement).

2 Students work in pairs to correct and improve each other's work. Students learn a lot by correcting errors in other students' work, and it helps them to get into the habit of reviewing and editing. They can also learn positive things from another student's text: fixed expressions, grammar, topic vocabulary, style, other ways to organise ideas etc. Peer correction also helps change the classroom atmosphere from the quiet, heads-down writing task to something more lively and communicative. After students have worked together to check and correct each other's comments, leave time for them to rewrite their emails individually before they finally hand them in to you. A similar idea is when students finish their first individual writing, ask them to leave their emails on the desk in front of them, or stick them up on the board/walls. Then ask them to go round and read all the other emails, looking at the structure, organisation of ideas, and noting down any good phrases that other students used. Then they return to their seats and make any changes that they want to.

3 Collective best version on the board. This method is good in small classes where all the students have been doing the same task and the content of their emails is similar. Go through the email sentence by sentence. Each time begin by asking one or two students to suggest an idea, then the whole class (including you) can comment on, reformulate and improve these ideas. Build up an agreed version bit by bit on the board. Of course, the final words will be different to what any one student originally wrote.

Always consider the idea of repeating a task in a later lesson. The students will use the same instructions and can look briefly at their previous, corrected version before they begin. Then they write the same email again. The importance of repeated practice of this kind is often underestimated by teachers who think it might be boring for students. Students tend to recognise that it helps build fluency in writing. Repeating an email from a previous lesson is also a good 'filler' activity for the end of a lesson.

Finally, an email is something that someone sends to someone else. So look for opportunities in class for students to 'send' emails to each other, and for the recipient to write a reply.

First, read the information about writing emails then match the informal phrases (1-15)

with the neutral/formal phrases (a-o).

Three different writing styles are often identified, although in real life the differences are not so clear:

Formal This is the style of an old-fashioned letter. Ideas are presented politely and carefully, and there is much use of fixed expressions and long words. The language is impersonal. Grammar and punctuation are important. This style is not common in emails, but you can find it if the subject matter is serious (for example a complaint).

Neutral/ This is the most common style in professional/work emails. The writer and reader

Standard are both busy, so the language is simple, clear and direct. Sentences are short and there is use of contractions (I've for I have etc.). The language is more personal. However, the style is not similar to speech — it is too direct.

Informal This is the most common style for emails between friends. Sometimes the email can be very short or it could include personal news, funny comments etc. This is the style that is closest to speech, so there are everyday words and conversational expressions. The reader will also be more tolerant of bad grammar etc.

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