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Glossary of Terms

Accelerated LearningEssentially a catch all term for a myriad number of techniques, methods and approaches (as opposed to a specific methodology). These are designed to simulate how humans learn naturally (and as such the term is something of a misnomer). This is done by incorporating what is ‘known’ and believed about the working of the human brain in order to access the subconscious and make fuller and more appropriate use of its capabilities. The intended result is that learning will be easier and that negative barriers to learning that have grown up due to years of misinformation and abuse will be de-suggested, thereby facilitating this task.

Aesthetic ResponseRosenblatt’s (1994) notion referring to the feelings and emotions generated in the reader by eir reading of the text. The reader is said to live through the meaning and that it is this evocation of the world of the text in combination with the meaning that the reader brings to it that constitutes the literary work. (Cited in Tomlinson, 1998: 131) 

Authentic MaterialsThis is defined by Tomlinson (1984) as:

“Materials such as newspaper articles, brochures, train tickets, letters, advertisements, recordings of the news, airport announcements, etc. which were originally used in real situations and were not designed for use in language teaching. Such materials are used in the classroom to expose the learners to language in real use.”  

I choose to include extracts from English literature in this definition.

Emotive EngagementSs becoming emotionally involved with whatever they are doing in the classroom. This emotive engagement enhances deep processing.

Experiential ReadingTomlinson (1998) defines this as reading “...more or less continuously without paying much conscious attention to the content or expression of the text that we are reading nor to the application of the reading strategies in our repertoire. We read holistically in order to gain a global understanding of the text rather than analytically in order to gain understanding of each portion of the text. We try to understand as much as possible of what we want to but we do not worry too much if there is something which we do not really understand.”  

FLForeign Language. 

Global UnderstandingUnderstanding the whole as opposed to analysing the parts.

ILInterlanguage. The term given to the language spoken by learners of a foreign or second language prior to having achieved a native speaker like standard with said foreign or second language. 

ImageTurco (1997) defines images as “...not only pictures, but all sensory information including sounds, feelings, textures, smells, etc.”   

Mind MapA type of diagram whereby one puts a word or phrase in the centre of the board, draws a circle round it and then draws lines coming off the circle at the end of which one writes more words or phrases related to the first and draws circles round them. This can be continued until one runs out of either words or space.

MTMother tongue.

Multi-Sensory ImagingThis is defined by Johnson (1995: 17) as, “...the ability to create mental ‘images’, using sight, sound, or other senses alone or in combination.”  

Reader Response: Whereby the reader interacts “actively with the text to produce meaning” (Tomlinson, 1998). 

SLASecond Language Acquisition 


Studial ReadingThat reading which requires, “...conscious effort, attention and thought.” (Tomlinson, 1998). An example would be the highlighting of words in a text prior to said text being given out to the Ss so that they focus their energy on the use of these words rather than on global understanding. 

SuggestionMy understanding (from my reading of the literature) is that in this context this term refers to a conscious attempt by the T (via whatever method/tool) to bypass the conscious mind of the S(s) in order to have the subconscious mind of the S(s) take up whatever empowering belief is desired by the T. 

SuggestopediaA specific teaching methodology created by Georgi Lozanov. For a fuller exposition the reader is directed to the section entitled Suggestopedia in Chapter One of the article entitled Investigating the Use of Multi-Sensory Imaging to Promote and Deepen Emotive Engagement with Authentic Texts.


Teaching contentRefers to the teaching of specific and predetermined language items and/or structures and/or functions.

TPR: Total Physical Response. A teaching methodology developed by Dr. James Asher which uses commands to teach any aspect of language. Predominantly right brain orientated. For more information the reader is directed to which is the official web site.

Zen Breathing A procedure designed to help Ss (or indeed anyone) relax. 

One breathes for 10 cycles of in....and....out...breathing through the nose i.e. one breathe in and one breathe out equals one cycle. One empties one's mind of all thoughts & concentrates only on one's breathing. Breathe naturally without forcing it to go either slow or quick. During this very simple process the mind-body becomes more relaxed.

This exercise is taken from Schuster, D. H. and C. E. Gritton (1986).

The reader is directed to the Works Cited section of the article entitled Investigating the Use of Multi-Sensory Imaging to Promote and Deepen Emotive Engagement with Authentic Texts for reference to the authors cited here.

If you can think of anything I've missed out that should be included here then speed on over to the Efl Alt Message Board! and say so! (You could even just say hi or leave a message for a friend!)


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