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AS English Language Notes (in Glossary Form)

General Terms
Mode: Medium of communication e.g. speech or writing

Prototype: A `best fit' example of a particular category

Genre: The type or category of text e.g. comedy, horror, tragedy

Type: A form of text e.g. recipe, short story, play

Multimodal text: Texts…

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Lexis: Deals with the vocabulary system in English language

Semantics: Deals with meaning and how that is generated within texts

Textual cohesion: Describes how a text is logically structured to create a coherent sense
of meaning

Word Class Description/Function Example
Noun Names of objects, feelings, attitudes, people Cottage, love

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Base form: The simple form of an adjective e.g. small, beautiful

Comparative: The form used to compare two items, adjectives using ­er or combined with
`more' e.g. smaller, more beautiful

Superlative: Adjectives using ­est or combined with `most' e.g. smallest, most beautiful

Cohesion: A measure of how well a text…

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Metaphor: Use of a term to describe something that it does not denote, to suggest similar
qualities between the two

Simile: A comparison of one thing with another, using the words `like' or `as'

Grammar and Syntax
Noun phrase: Group of words centred around a head noun e.g. "The Times,"…

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Primary auxiliary verb: Used to denote tense changes e.g. do, be, have

Semi-auxiliary: A combination of a primary auxiliary and another verb part and `to' e.g.
"be supposed to"

Modifier: A word or phrase that affects the meaning of another e.g. "The pink ribbon",
"Quite a well-kept garden", "She always…

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Sentence Mood Feature Example
Declarative Telling Before Easter, she had driven over to Paris
Interrogative Asking Is it done yet?
Imperative Inviting, demanding Look at the evidence

Phonetics and Phonology
Phoneme: Basic unit of sound from with language is created

Consonant Group Examples
Plosives b, p, t, d, k, g…

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Cooperative principle: The principle that suggests all communication is essentially a
cooperative act

Grice's maxims:

Quantity: Be only as informative as necessary/use an appropriate amount of detail
Quality: Don't lie and do not knowingly mislead
Relevance: Keep what is being discussed relevant to the topic
Manner: Avoid ambiguity and vagueness…

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Narrative Details a series of events, can be Novels, witness accounts
chronological or non-chronological

Transactional speech: There is a purpose to the conversation e.g. giving order at a

Interactional speech: Just people talking; small talk/everyday language use

Discourse analysis: How texts present information in order to create identities for…

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Powerful participants: Those who hold some degree of status in a conversation and can
to some extent control its direction and the potential for speakers to

Speech act: Something that happens as a direct outcome of an exchange (only applicable to
spoken language) e.g. "whisk these together"

Juxtaposition: Placing…

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expression in informal
Ellipsis Omissions of words for Just seen Jack (ellipsis I've)
economical purposes or to Tonight, 8pm (ellipsis I'll
avoid awkward repetition meet
Tag Questions Consist of an auxiliary verb, You did really well didn't
a negative particle and a you?
pronoun It was tomorrow wasn't…


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