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    • Join Date: Dec 2006
    • Posts: 7

    Formal / informal English

    Dear Teachers,
    Thank you very much for your answers.
    Now I have some new questions .
    Some people say that phrasal verbs are informal, and one-word verbs are formal. Is that right ?. Some Textbooks available in Vietnam, such as Headway, teach how to write a formal or informal letters, but the lessons are not explained clearly . The question is where I can find good lessons about the problem , including Teachers's explaination, vocabulary and lessons for pratice ?

  1. Editor,
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Laos

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 60,194

    Re: Formal / informal English

    In the cafe, you might tell your friend that you were going to 'pack your job in', but when you're writing to your boss, you're more likely to use 'resign'. I think it oversimplifies things, however, to say that phrasal verbs are informal. There is a tendency to use fewer phrasal verbs in formal language, but it is not wrong to use them, especially when they are part of professional jargon. If there's a one-word verb that is more formal , then use it, but don't think that a few phrasal verbs makes a text look colloquial.

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