Tdol's English Language Blog

Richard Flynn (aka Tdol) is an English teacher and the Site Editor here at UsingEnglish.com. Here, he talks about English usage that catches his eye or ear, and looks at language issues that interest or puzzle him.

Forum Policies- Cross-Forum Posting

By Tdol on May 28, 2015 | | 0 Comments

Quite a lot of people post the same question in a number of ESL forums. The logic behind doing this is clear- you should be able to access a wider selection fof views and opinions and get better answers. However, things don't always work out the way people think and this process can lead to objections from the people answering.

Continue reading Forum Policies- Cross-Forum Posting.

First Certificate- Updated Exam Specifications

By Tdol on Mar 9, 2015 | | 0 Comments

We are updating our site to incorporate the changes that have been made by the updates to the First Certicate in English (FCE) exam from Cambridge English.

Continue reading First Certificate- Updated Exam Specifications.

Salaries

By Tdol on Jan 6, 2015 | | 2 Comments

I left the UK in 2004. There are jobs currently advertised that pay the same, or in some cases 10% less, than I was earning then. Add even a very small amount of inflation and this makes for a huge drop in spending power. The average salary that people talk about in Japan today is the same as when I first visited Japan in 2005. I saw hourly rates in Portugal, where I first taught, a decade later that were the same as when I left.

Continue reading Salaries.

Family-Friendly Forum

By Tdol on Nov 16, 2014 | | 4 Comments

I have had a few complaints about swearing in the forum, even though the posts were legitimate questions about the use of slang and swearwords. There aren't that many threads dealing with these, but some of them do contain language that somewould consider to be extreme and taboo.

Continue reading Family-Friendly Forum.

Football Glossary

By Tdol on Jun 8, 2014 | | 0 Comments

The World Cup is about to start and the football glossary posted in the forum a couple of years ago has now been updated, turned into a regular glossary format and put onto the main site. You can view it alphabetically or by category.

Continue reading Football Glossary.

Forum- Passwords & Personal Data

By Tdol on Sep 27, 2013 | | 8 Comments

After we changed everyone's passwords a couple of weeks ago, people were asking some questions about passwords and personal data.  Firstly, we don't hold much personal data- as people have usernames, we don't know real names. We do ask for the year and date of birth to comply with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). We ask for an active email account and send a link that has to be clicked on to complete the registration. This is to make it harder for automated registration by advertisers and spammers. We also ask where you're from, where you are based now and what your first language is. There are also optional fields where people can add biographical information and interests if they wish. Unless you use your real name as a username or connect via Facebook, the data is anonymous. If an acount is deleted, this information is deleted from our records.

Continue reading Forum- Passwords & Personal Data.

Talk a mile in my shoes

By Tdol on Mar 24, 2013 | | 0 Comments

I was having lunch a few months ago when I suddenly struggled to get to the end of what I was saying- my voice dipped and wouldn't come back. Within a week or so, I couldn't produce any noise and was forced into a soundless whisper. If I strained a bit, I could just about make a sound that could possibly be heard at very close range. My first medical consultation did nothing, and I had tickets to go abroad that meant going with just this silent croak.

Continue reading Talk a mile in my shoes.

China Holistic English

By Tdol on Dec 17, 2012 | | 8 Comments

A few years ago we used to host some pieces written by Martin Wolff and Niu Quiang about their experiments in trying to teach English in new ways in China, which have since evolved into the China Holistic English site (link broken).

Continue reading China Holistic English.

Budget ESL in the Philippines

By Tdol on Nov 19, 2012 | | 6 Comments

There have been a number of articles about the growth of ESL teaching in the Philippines like this, but some of what they are stating don't strike me as right. The Philippines does have potential and in the drive to reduce costs, it is clearly a place to watch out for.

Continue reading Budget ESL in the Philippines.

Speaking Activities That Don't Suck

By Tdol on Nov 5, 2012 | | 2 Comments

I have English Teacher X's obra prima to read next and have enjoyed the other ebooks - they include a lot of sensible and realistic advice - but I didn't enjoy Speaking Activities that Don't Suck as much.

Continue reading Speaking Activities That Don't Suck.

More News...

Browse the complete archive: Archives

Recent Comments

  • Tdol: Fine, but teaching English is not the same as preaching read more
  • Tdol: There is clearly a huge demand. That doesn't stop it read more
  • hm raju: As for me, when I was a student, honestly, I read more
  • dawn: Go into ALL the world and PREACH the gospel...enough said..we read more
  • Duncan Bolt: I find it useful to add an additional line to read more
  • Tdol: I started in 1983 and things were so much more read more
  • emsr2d2: I could barely live on my earnings when I moved read more
  • Tdol: I spoke to a teacher in Tokyo recently who suggested read more
  • Anonymous: BEWARE of NOVA To all teachers considering employment at Nova. read more
  • sunanda sangam: If condition doubt He did not read well. So he read more
Creative Commons License
This blog is licensed under a Creative Commons License.