"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
Critical Thinking and Language
The Challenge of Generic Skills and Disciplinary Discourses
This book clarifies the idea of critical thinking by investigating the 'critical' practices of academics across a range of disciplines. Drawing on key theorists - Wittgenstein, Geertz, Williams, Halliday - and using a 'textographic' approach, the book explores how the concept of critical thinking is understood by academics and also how it is constructed discursively in the texts and practices they employ in their teaching.
Critical thinking is one of the most widely discussed concepts in debates on university learning. For many, the idea of teaching students to be critical thinkers characterizes more than anything else the overriding purpose of 'higher education'. But whilst there is general agreement about its importance as an educational ideal, there is surprisingly little agreement about what the concept means exactly. Also at issue is how and what students need to be taught in order to be properly critical in their field. This searching monograph seeks answers to these important questions.