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TEACHING VOCABULARY IN DISCOURSE-ORIENTED SYLLABUS

J. Bobkina1, M. Fernandez de Caleya Dalmau2

1Universidad Complutense de Madrid (SPAIN)
2Universidad Polit├ęcnica de Madrid (SPAIN)
Few English teachers nowadays would reject the necessity of teaching vocabulary, wherever it possible, in context. By context we understand not only the immediate semantic environment of any given lexical item, but the whole text surrounding (co-text) as well as the situation in which the discourse is produced (context).

By bringing a discourse dimension into vocabulary teaching, we do not pretend to substitute neither traditional nor more recent, communicative approaches. On the contrary, our challenge is to combine already existing approaches in teaching lexis with a discourse-oriented one.

Our research is based mainly on the latest developments of Text Linguistics and Discourse Analysis in the field of lexical cohesion: studying vocabulary above sentence level.

We propose that lexical cohesion as a significant feature of textuality could be successfully exploited by language teachers. By introducing vocabulary work on a discourse level, we pretend to provide the language students with meaningful, controlled practice of vocabulary, as well as to give them a chance to improve their text-creating and decoding abilities in a wide variety of contexts.

A variety of original materials designed on a base of a discourse-oriented teaching are included.