Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last
Results 1 to 10 of 17
  1. Junior Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Arabic
      • Home Country:
      • Egypt
      • Current Location:
      • Egypt

    • Join Date: Oct 2016
    • Posts: 61
    #1

    "To act on the side" meaning

    Hi,
    what is the meaning of "To act on the side" in the following sentence?
    "Our political leaders need at least a modest degree of scientificliteracy, which most badly lack today no applause, please.It will be better for allif they prepare before entering office rather than learning on the job.Therefore you will do well to act on the side,no matter how far into the laboratoryyou may go"

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
    Moderator
    Other
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 19,063
    #2

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    This doesn't mean anything to me.

    Can you please provide the source of this quotation so we can see broader context?
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  3. Senior Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Apr 2017
    • Posts: 1,328
    #3

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    Quote Originally Posted by Eslam Elbyaly View Post
    Hi,
    what is the meaning of "To act on the side" in the following sentence?
    "Our political leaders need at least a modest degree of scientific literacy, which most badly lack today —no applause, please. It will be better for all if they prepare before entering office rather than learning on the job. Therefore you will do well to act on the side, no matter how far into the laboratory you may go"
    Looks like you copy and pasted this passage from somewhere. Make sure to check the passage to avoid awkward spacing.

  4. Junior Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Arabic
      • Home Country:
      • Egypt
      • Current Location:
      • Egypt

    • Join Date: Oct 2016
    • Posts: 61
    #4

  5. VIP Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Dec 2015
    • Posts: 12,640
    #5

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    From reading the transcript, I think the speaker lost the thread of what he was saying. He was going to say something like "to act on the side of education" but changed tack.
    I am not a teacher.

  6. Senior Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Apr 2017
    • Posts: 1,328
    #6

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    Here is the full context: "Our political leaders need at least a modest degree of scientific literacy, which most badly lack today —no applause, please. It will be better for all if they prepare before entering office rather than learning on the job. Therefore you will do well to act on the side, no matter how far into the laboratory you may go, to serve as teachers during the span of your career."

    It seems he was talking about scientists taking a side job as teachers for our political leaders. Our student left out a very important phrase at the end of the passage.



  7. Senior Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Apr 2017
    • Posts: 1,328
    #7

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    From reading the transcript, I think the speaker lost the thread of what he was saying. He was going to say something like "to act on the side of education" but changed tack.
    Do you mean "changed tact"?

  8. Piscean's Avatar
    VIP Member
    Retired English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Europe
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Jul 2015
    • Posts: 13,678
    #8

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    'Change tack' makes sense. I don't think 'change tact' would.

  9. Senior Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Apr 2017
    • Posts: 1,328
    #9

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    Change tact = change tactic. I don't think I have seen "change tack" before.
    Last edited by andrewg927; 21-Apr-2017 at 21:54.

  10. emsr2d2's Avatar
    Moderator
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 47,873
    #10

    Re: "To act on the side" meaning

    I can't speak for AmE, but in BrE, the phrase is "to change tack". I think it comes from sailing terminology.

    I have never heard of "tact" used as any sort of abbreviated form of "tactic".
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last

Similar Threads

  1. [General] "depending on which side of yarrow you are on" - meaning?
    By Olympian in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 21-Jun-2014, 18:56
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 18-Aug-2012, 05:23
  3. [Idiom] idioms meaning "to give a freedom to act or make decisions"
    By Olenek in forum English Idioms and Sayings
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 02-May-2011, 21:52
  4. [General] what is the meaning of "part of the act"?
    By mokbon in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 14-Apr-2011, 17:33
  5. Special meaning of "side"?
    By Bushwhacker in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 25-Jul-2008, 12:20

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •