Speaking in Academic Contexts.

Working in groups

Language

Learn the language that will enable you to play your role well.

For example:

1. Implementer (IMP)

Advising and persuadingAgreeingApologisingAsking for clarification /more information;Asking for informationAsking for permissionChanging the subject/Moving onEmphasising a pointExpressing method and meansExpressing certaintyExpressing reasons and explanationsExpressing frequencyGiving further informationGiving instructionsHolding the floor - preventing interruptionsListingNarratingOfferingPresenting and discussing resultsReferring to researchQuoting directlyRequestingSequencingSpeeding up thingsSuggestingUsing visuals

2. Co-ordinator (CO)

Advising and persuadingAgreeingAsking for informationAsking for opinionsChanging the subject/Moving onChecking that people are followingControlling the discussionInvitingObligingSpeeding up thingsSuggestingSummarisingUsing visuals

3. Shaper (SH)

Advising and persuadingChallengingChanging the subject/Moving onControlling the discussionIntroducing your group/teamInterrupting politelyInvitingSuggesting

4. Plant (PL)

Describing changeDescribing functionDescribing graphs and figuresDescribing objectsDescribing proceduresDescribing processes and developments and changesExemplification - giving examplesGeneralisingHolding the floor - preventing interruptionsOfferingPredictingPresenting and discussing resultsSuggestingUsing visuals

5. Resource Investigator (RI)

Checking that people are followingEmphasising a pointExemplification - giving examplesGeneralisingGiving background informationGiving further informationGiving instructionsGiving opinionsHolding the floor - preventing interruptionsPredictingPresenting and discussing resultsReferring to researchQuoting directlySummarisingUsing visuals

6. Monitor-Evaluator (ME)

Classifying / categorisingComparingContrastingExpressing doubt and reservationExpressing certaintyExpressing reasons and explanationsExpressing frequencyFollowing up a questionGiving opinionsSuggestingSummarisingUsing visuals

7. Teamworker (TW)

ApologisingAsking for clarification /more informationConcludingEncouragingEmphasising a pointEvaluatingListingNarratingSummarisingUsing visuals

8. Completer-Finisher (CF)

ApologisingAsking for clarification /more informationChanging the subject/Moving onChecking that people are followingControlling the discussionEncouragingEmphasising a pointEvaluatingExpressing reasons and explanationsFollowing up a questionGiving background informationGiving further informationGiving opinionsGiving, withholding & seeking permissionIntroducing your group/teamInterrupting politelyPresenting and discussing resultsReferring to researchQuoting directlyRephrasingSpeeding up thingsSuggestingSummarisingWarning

9. Specialist (SP)

Advising and persuadingClassifying / categorisingComparingContrastingDealing with difficult questionsDefiningDescribing aims and objectives/IntentionsDescribing changeDescribing functionDescribing graphs and figuresDescribing objectsDescribing proceduresDescribing processes and developments and changesEmphasising a pointExemplification - giving examplesExpressing method and meansExpressing certaintyExpressing reasons and explanationsGiving background informationGiving further informationGiving instructionsGiving opinionsHolding the floor - preventing interruptionsListingNarratingPresenting and discussing resultsReferring to researchQuoting directlyRequestingRephrasingSequencingSummarisingUsing visuals

Useful language

Advising and persuading

Agreeing

Apologising

Asking for clarification /more information

Asking for information

Asking for opinions

Asking for permission

Challenging

Changing the subject/Moving on

Checking that people are following

Checking that you have understood

Classifying / categorising

Comparing

Concluding

Contrasting

Controlling the discussion

Dealing with difficult questions

Defining

Describing aims and objectives/Intentions

Describing change

Describing function

Describing graphs and figures

Describing objects

Describing procedures 

Describing processes and developments and changes

Disagreeing

Expressing doubt and reservation

Encouraging

Emphasising a point

Evaluating

Exemplification - giving examples

Expressing method and means

Expressing certainty

Expressing reasons and explanations

Following up a question

Expressing frequency

Generalising

Giving background information

Giving further information

Giving instructions

Giving opinions.

Giving, withholding & seeking permission

Holding the floor - preventing interruptions

Hypothesising

Introducing your group/team

Interrupting politely

Inviting

Listing

Narrating

Obliging

Offering

Predicting

Presenting and discussing results

Referring to research

Quoting directly

Requesting

Rephrasing

Sequencing

Speeding up things

Suggesting

Summarising

Using visuals

Warning


Advising and persuading

  • Why don't you ....
  • I think you should ....
  • My advice would be to ....
  • I'm sure you ought to ....
  • Don't you think it would be better to ....
  • You ought to ...
  • You should ....
  • If I were you, I'd ....
  • You'd better ....

Agreeing

  • I couldn't agree more.
  • On the whole, I think the speaker's arguments are fair.
  • I (quite) agree.
  • I think you're absolutely right.
  • That's a very good point.
  • You've got a very good point there.
  • I fully support what you say.
  • I totally agree.
  • Exactly!

Apologising

  • I'm sorry.
  • I apologise.
  • I'm sorry to say that ....
  • There seems to have been a mistake. I ....
  • I can assure you it won't happen again.
  • Excuse me.
  • I beg your pardon.
  • I'm extremely sorry about ....
  • I hope you will excuse me if I have to ....

Asking for clarification/more information

  • I didn't understand what you said about .
  • I'm sorry, I didn't catch what you said about .
  • I'm sorry, could you repeat what you said about .
  • Sorry, but I'm not quite clear on .
  • I'd like to ask you about .
  • I didn't understand the bit about the ...
  • What does . mean?
  • I'm not sure what you mean.
  • I don't see what you mean.
  • Could we come back to that?
  • Could you explain that again, please?
  • What did you mean when you said .?
  • Could you be more specific about .?
  • Could you expand a little bit on what you said about .?
  • Could you give an example of .?
  • Could you explain in more detail.?
  • So you're telling me that I can't .?
  • So what you're saying is that .?
  • So you mean that .?
  • Are you saying that .?
  • Am I correct in assuming that .?
  • Let me just make sure - your point is that .
  • If I have understood you correctly, your point is that .

Asking for information

  • Excuse me.
  • Could you tell me ...?
  • Could you tell me how to ...?
  • Would you mind telling me ...?
  • Do you know ...?
  • What happens if ...?
  • Where can I ...?
  • When can I ...?
  • How can I ...?
  • Something else I'd like to know is ....

Asking for opinions

  • What do you think about ...?
  • What are you views on ...?
  • What do you feel about ...?
  • What's your opinion of ...?
  • What are your feelings about ...?
  • Have you got any comments on ...?
  • Could I have your reaction to ...?
  • Do you have any particular views on ...?
  • Don't you agree, ...?
  • I think X knows more about this than I do.
  • I expect X will agree with me when I say ....

Asking for permission

  • Can I ...?
  • May I ...?
  • Could I ...?
  • Could I possibly ...?
  • Do you mind if I ...?
  • Would it be possible for me to ...?
  • Would it be all right if I ...?

Challenging

  • Well . maybe . possibly .
  • Yes, but don't you think .?
  • I can see your point, but ..
  • I think that's debatable.
  • Perhaps, but don't you think that ..
  • I see what you mean but ..
  • I agree to some extent, but ....
  • I see what you mean, but ..
  • But isn't it really a question of ..
  • But what about .?
  • But surely .?
  • But don't you think that .?
  • I take your point, but ..
  • It seems to me ....
  • I tend to think ....
  • I don't think I'd say that.
  • I'm not so sure about that.
  • You may be right.
  • But all the evidence suggests that ..
  • I'm afraid I can't agree with . on this matter.
  • I wouldn't say that.
  • I don't agree at all.
  • I can't accept that.

Changing the subject/moving on

  • OK
  • Now
  • All right
  • I think we've finished that item.
  • If we can now turn to ....
  • Can we move on to the next point now.
  • I'd like now to move on to ..
  • Turning now to..
  • Moving on now to.
  • Having looked at ., I'd now like to consider ..
  • I now want to turn to ....
  • The next point is ..
  • Another interesting point is ..
  • The next aspect I'd like to consider is ..
  • I'd now like to turn to ..
  • What do you think about X?

Checking that people are following

  • Is that clear?
  • Is everyone following?
  • All right?
  • OK?
  • All right so far?
  • Are you with me?
  • Do you see what I mean?

Checking that you have understood

  • So you're telling me that I can't ..
  • So what you're saying is that ..
  • So you mean that ..
  • Are you saying that .?
  • Am I correct in assuming that .?
  • Let me just make sure - your point is that .
  • If I have understood you correctly, your point is that .

Classifying / categorising

There are

two

types
kinds
classes
categories
sorts
varieties

of X

: Y and Z.
. These are Y and Z.

The

are Y and Z.


X

consists of
comprises
can be divided into

two

categories
classes
kinds
types
varieties

. These are Y and Z.
: Y and Z.


Y and Z are

classes
kinds
types
categories
varieties

of X.


We can classify X

according to
on the basis of
depending on

W.

Comparing

X is like Y
X and Y are similar
X is similar to Y
X is the same as Y
X resembles Y

with respect to W.
as regards W.
as far as W is concerned.
regarding W.
in that W is the same.
in terms of W.
in W.


Both X and Y cost £W.
X is as expensive as W.
X costs the same as Y.
X is the same price as Y.

X has a Y.

Similarly, it has a W.
Likewise, it has a W.
Correspondingly, it has a W.
It has a W, too.
It also has a W.

Concluding

  • So ..
  • We've seen that ..
  • First we looked at . and we saw that ..
  • Then we considered . and I argued ..
  • In short ..
  • To sum up, ..
  • In conclusion, I'd like to emphasise that ..
  • That completes my presentation.

Contrasting

X differs from Y
X is unlike Y
X and Y differ
X is different from Y
X contrasts with Y

with respect to W.
as regards W.
as far as W is concerned.
regarding W.
in terms of W.
in W.


X costs £1,174, whereas Y costs £W.
X costs £1,174, while Y costs £W.
X costs £1,174, but Y costs £W.
X costs £1,174, in contrast to Y, which costs £W.
X is more expensive than Y.
X is not as expensive as Y.
X costs more than Y.


X is expensive to buy.

On the other hand, it is W.
In contrast, it is W.
Conversely, it is W.
However, it is W.


Although X is expensive to buy,
Despite the high price of X,

it is W.

Controlling the discussion

  • Let's start by looking at ....
  • So, I think we have agree that ....
  • Well, I think that covers everything.
  • Does anyone disagree with this?
  • Does anyone have any comments or questions?
  • So is this the same as your experience?
  • So, Y, what is your opinion of this?
  • X, what do you think?
  • Don't you agree, X?
  • Do you agree with what X has just said?
  • Does anyone else have any opinions.

Dealing with difficult questions

  • . is important but it's too complex for us to deal with here.
  • I think the aim of this talk is to focus on . rather than ..
  • It's too early for us to say whether ..
  • We don't have enough evidence to show that ..
  • That's not something I've had time to deal with, but ..
  • I'd prefer to deal with that point later.

Defining

  • X is ....
    X is called ....
    X is known as ....
    X may be defined as ....
    X is a type of Y that/which ....
    A type of Y which ... is X.
    We call ... ....
    We define ... ....

Describing aims and objectives/intentions

  • What I'd like to do is to discuss ..
  • What I intend to do is to explain ..
  • In my talk today, ..
  • My topic today is ..
  • Today, I'm going to talk about ..
  • I'm going to talk to you about ..
  • My colleagues and I are going to give a short presentation on ..
  • Today I want to consider ..
  • In this talk, I would like to concentrate on ..
  • The subject of this talk is ..
  • The purpose of this talk is to ..
  • This talk is designed to ..

Describing function

  • What is the function of X?
  • What does X do?
  • What is X used for?
  • The thermostat controls the temperature.
  • The thermostat is used for controlling the temperature.
  • We use a thermostat to measure the temperature.
  • The function of the thermostat is to control the temperature.
  • The thermostat serves to control the temperature.
  • A thermostat is an instrument for measuring temperature.
  • A thermostat enables the researcher to measure the temperature accurately.
  • The function of advertising is to market products and services to potential buyers in an effective and persuasive manner.

Describing graphs and figures

As you can see

from
in

the

chart,
diagram,
table,
graph,
figures,
statistics,

...

We can see

that ...


As you can see

from
in

Table 1,
Figure 2,
Graph 3,

.

We can see


As

the

chart
diagram
table
graph

shows,
indicates,

.

figures
statistics

show,
indicate,


From

Table 1
Figure 2

we

can

may

see
conclude
show
estimate
calculate
infer

that ...

the

figures
chart
diagram

Describing change

X

increased
shot up
grew
rose

by

...

declined
reduced
decreased
dropped
fell


X

increased
shot up
grew
rose

slightly
slowly
gradually
steadily
markedly
dramatically
steeply
sharply
rapidly
suddenly

declined
reduced
decreased
dropped
fell


X

reached a peak.
levelled off

Describing objects

  • Where is it?
  • What size is it?
  • What shape is it?
  • What colour is it?
  • What is it made of?
  • What does it look like?
  • What is it used for?
  • How does it work?

Position

A is

adjacent to
alongside
below
beyond
facing (diagonally)
parallel to
underneath
opposite
in the middle of
on the right of
on the left of
near
close to
touching
behind
in front of
under
on top of
above
below
level with
diagonally above
vertically below

B

between
equidistant from

B and C.

Structure

X

is

nailed
screwed
fixed
fastened
welded
tied
connected
attached

to

Y

by

Z

consists

of

Y and Z

contains

Colour

X

is

dark
light
pale
bright
dull

green
blue
red
yellow

Composition

X

is

made of

metal.
steel.
alluminium.
an alloy of A and B.
cloth.
silk.
china.
wood.
plastic.
glass.

Size and weight

X

is

6 cm

long
high
wide


X

is

6 cm

in

length
height
width
diameter

6 Kg

weight


The

length
height
width
diameter

of

X

is

6 cm

weight

6 Kg.


X

has

a

length
width
height
diameter

of

6 cm.

weight

6 Kg.


X

weighs

10 Kg

Shape

X

is

square
round
rectangular
triangular
semi-circular
conical
spherical

in shape


X

is

is shaped like a

square
circle
rectangle
triangle
semi-circle

Describing procedures 

  • I'm going to deal with three aspects of the subject ..
  • I'm going to divide my presentation into three sections.
  • I've divided my presentation into three sections.
  • I thought it would be useful to divide my talk into three sections.
  • This subject can be looked at under the following headings: ..
  • I'll take about ... minutes.
  • The talk should last about ... minutes.
  • I'll be happy to answer questions at the end
  • If you have any questions, I'll try to answer them afterwards.
  • If you have any questions, please feel free to interrupt.

Describing processes, developments and changes

  • I'd like to show you how to ....
  • There are three main steps in this process....
  • The first/second/third step is ...

Firstly,

The first step is

First of all,

The first stage is

To begin with,

... begins with

Initially

... commences with

 

 

Beforehand,

Before this,

Previously,

Prior to this,

Earlier,

 

 

 

At the same time,

During

Simultaneously,

When this happens

 

While

 

 

Secondly, Thirdly etc

After this,

Next,

The next step is

Then,

In the next stage,

Subsequently,

In the following stage,

Later,

Following this,

 

As soon as the committee has finished its work, ...

 

 

Eventually,

... until ...

Lastly

... finishes with ...

Finally,

concludes with

In the last stage,

The last step is ...

Disagreeing

  • But don't you think that .?
  • I see what you mean, but ..
  • But isn't it really a question of ..
  • But what about .?
  • But surely .?
  • I take your point, but ..
  • Yes, but on the other hand ....
  • But all the evidence suggests that ..
  • I'm afraid I can't agree with . on this matter.
  • I wouldn't say that.
  • I don't agree at all.
  • I can't accept that.

Expressing doubt and reservation

  • Well . maybe . possibly .
  • I'm not so sure about that.
  • You may be right.
  • I don't think I'd say that.
  • Yes, but don't you think .?
  • I can see your point, but .
  • I think that's debatable.
  • Perhaps, but don't you think that .
  • I see what you mean but .
  • I agree to some extent, but ...
  • It seems to me ...
  • I tend to think ...

Encouraging

  • That's a good idea.
  • Good.
  • Why don't you ...?
  • Go on.

Emphasising a point

  • I want to stress ....
  • I want to highlight ....
  • I'd like to emphasise ....
  • I'd like to put emphasis on ....
  • It's important to remember that ....
  • We should bear in mind that ....
  • Don't forget that ....
  • The crucial point is ....
  • The essential point is ....
  • The fundamental point is ....
  • Furthermore, ....
  • What's more, ....
  • This supports my argument that, ....
  • It follows, therefore, that ....
  • What (in effect) we are saying is ....

Evaluating

  • That's a good idea.
  • That's a very good point.
  • You've got a good point there.
  • I agree entirely.
  • That's exactly what we need.
  • I'm not sure what you mean by ....
  • That's an interesting point, but ....
  • You might be right.
  • That's all very well, but ....
  • I'm not so sure about that.
  • Yes, but don't you think ....
  • I can see your point, but ....
  • You seem to have forgotten ....
  • Very interesting. How exactly do you propose to ..?
  • I don't see how you can argue that ...
  • I can't accept that at all.

Exemplification - giving examples

  • For example, ..
  • For instance, ..
  • And as proof of that, ..
  • Remember .
  • You only have to think of ..
  • To illustrate my/our point ....

Expressing method and means

  • To open the door, turn the handle.
  • Turn the handle so as to open the door.
  • Turn the handle in order to open the door.
  • The radio may be turned on by pressing the on/off switch.

Expressing certainty

 

Verbs

Degree of certainty

complete certainty

is (not)
will (not)
must (not)

certain(ly)
definite(ly)
clear(ly)
undoubtedly

strong

can/cannot
should (not

probably (is)
presumably

partial

could (not)

likely/unlikely

less strong

may (not)
might (not)

possibly (not)
perhaps (not)

impersonal (i.e. no commitment)

It is said that ...
It appears that ...
A reports that ...
There is evidence to suggest that. (etc.)

Expressing reasons and explanations

This relationship can be expressed in many ways:

Emphasising cause.

The death rate from cancer is increasing

because
owing to the fact that

people are smoking more.

The fact that

the death rate from cancer is increasing 

is due to
may be due to

people smoking more.


The
One

reason for
cause of

the death rate from cancer increasing

is that
could be that

people are smoking more.


An increase in the death rate from cancer

is
may be

one effect of
one result of
one consequence of
caused by
due to
because of

people smoking more.

results from
arises from

Emphasising effect.

As
Because
Since

people are smoking more,

the death rate from cancer is increasing.


People are smoking more.

Therefore,
So,
Thus,
Hence,
Consequently,
Because of this,
For this reason,
As a consequence,
As a result,

the death rate from cancer is increasing.

People are smoking more,

as a result of which
as a consequence of which
with the result that


Owing to

people smoking more,

the death rate from cancer is increasing.


One
The

effect of
result of
consequence of

people smoking more

is that

the death rate from cancer is increasing.

is to

increase the death rate from cancer.


People smoking more

results in
leads to
produces
causes
is the cause of
gives rise to
brings about

an increase in the death rate from cancer.


People smoke more,

(so)
(thus)
(thereby)

resulting in
leading to
producing
causing
giving rise to
bringing about

an increase in the death rate from cancer.


If

people smoke more

the death rate from cancer will increase.

Following up a question

  • That's not really what I was asking. My question is about ..
  • Perhaps I didn't make my question clear. In fact what I asked was .
  • I think you've answered a slightly different question. What I would like to know is .
  • I understand that but what I actually had in mind was .
  • Sorry, I'm still not clear about .

Expressing frequency

Percentage

Frequency

Verbs
100%

always


usual(ly)
normal(ly)
general(ly)
as a rule
on the whole

often
frequent(ly)
sometimes
occasional(ly)

will
is/are
must
have to

should
ought to


can
could
may
might


0%

rare(ly)
seldom
hardly ever
scarcely ever

never

could not
will not
cannot
is/are not

Generalising

Percentage

Quantity

Frequency

Certainty

Verbs
100%

all/every/each
most
a majority (of)
many/much



some
a number (of)
several

a minority (of)
a few/a little

always


usual(ly)
normal(ly)
general(ly)
as a rule
on the whole

often
frequent(ly)
sometimes
occasional(ly)

certain(ly)
definite(ly)
undoubtedly
clearly
presumably
probably/probable
likely


conceivably
possibly/possible
perhaps
maybe

will
is/are
must
have to

should
ought to


can
could
may
might


0%

few/little




no/none/not any

rare(ly)
seldom
hardly ever
scarcely ever

never

uncertain
unlikely

could not
will not
cannot
is/are not

Giving instructions

  • First of all you ....
  • The first thing you have to do is ....
  • After you've done that, you ....
  • The next thing to do is ....
  • Make sure you remember to ....
  • Be careful not to ....

Expressing manner - how something is done

  • ... in such a way that...
  • ... slowly, carefully, etc
  • ... with care/precision
  • ... in a careful way/manner

Expressing purpose - why something is done

  • ... so as to .
  • ... so as not to .
  • ... so that .
  • ... in order to .
  • ... in order not to .

Giving further information

  • Furthermore, ....
  • An additional point is ....
  • Another point is ....
  • A further point is ....
  • A similar point is ....
  • In addition, ....
  • Moreover, ....
  • Similarly, ....
  • Apart from ..., ....
  • Not only ., but ....
  • We can add ....
  • I could add that ....
  • Further, ....
  • As well as...,....
  • Besides, ....
  • ..., as well.
  • ..., too.
  • ..., also.

Giving background information

  • As we know, ....
  • As we have already seen, ....
  • As we have all read, ....
  • It's clear that, ....
  • It goes without saying, ....
  • We all understand, ....
  • It is understood, ....
  • You'll remember, ....

Giving opinions.

  • I definitely think that....
  • I'm sure that....
  • I'm convinced that....
  • I really do think that....
  • I'm of the opinion that ...
  • As I see it, ....
  • I think ....
  • I consider ....
  • I feel ....
  • Personally, I believe ...
  • In my opinion/view, ....
  • It seems to me ....
  • I'm inclined to think that ...
  • I tend to think that ....

Giving, withholding & seeking permission

  • May I ...?
  • Could I possibly ...?
  • Do you mind if I ...?
  • Would it be possible for me to ...?
  • I'm sorry to bother you, but ...
  • Would it be all right if I ...?
  • OK
  • Yes, go ahead.
  • Certainly
  • Please do,
  • Yes, I suppose so.
  • Oh well. All right.
  • I'd rather you didn't, if you don't mind.
  • I'm sorry, but ....
  • That's rather difficult, I'm afraid.
  • I'm sorry. That's not possible.
  • No, please don't.

Holding the floor - preventing interruptions

  • There are two points I'd like to make:
  • Although ...
  • And another thing.

Hypothesising

  • If ...
  • What if ...
  • What you have done if ...?
  • What might have happened if ...?

Interrupting politely

  • If I could just come in here.
  • Sorry to interrupt, but .
  • I'd just like to say that ...
  • Um ... um ... um ...

Introducing your group/team

  • I'd like to introduce ....
  • Can I introduce ...
  • We are very pleased to have with us today, X.
  • Our first team member is, X. X is going to talk about ....
  • Next we have Y. Y is going to present the results of our research.

Inviting

  • Come in and sit down.
  • Would you like to give us your suggestions.
  • May I invite you to represent us at the meeting next Saturday.
  • That covers the main points. If you have any comments or questions, we'll be happy to hear them.
  • So that explains our main point. Does anyone have any comments or questions?
  • We'd be glad to try and answer any questions.

Listing

Firstly
Secondly
Next
Then
Thirdly
Lastly
Finally

   .   

First of all
In the first place
For one thing
To begin with
In the second place
For another thing

The

first
second
next
last

point I'd like to make is

Narrating

Time

  • In 1942, ...
  • During the 20th century, ...
  • Yesterday, ...
  • Twenty five years ago, ...

Sequence

Before he was offered a job as a lecturer,

he had finished his research.

  • Before this, .
  • For the previous X years, .
  • Prior to this, .
  • Previously, .
  • X years previously, .
  • Before.
  • . before which .
  • . prior to which .

When
As soon as
After

he had finished his research, he was offered a job as a lecturer.


On finishing his research,
After finishing his research,
Having finished his research,
On finishing his research,

he was offered a job as a lecturer.

  • For the following X years, .
  • X years later, .
  • After .
  • Following this, .
  • When .
  • Subsequently, .
  • Soon/Shortly/Immediately afterwards, .
  • . following which .
  • . after which .

While he was doing his research,

he made an important discovery.

When

doing his research,

While

During his research,

  • During this period, .
  • Throughout this period, .
  • . during which.
  • . throughout which.

Obliging

  • You should ....
  • You must ....
  • You have to ....
  • You'll have to ....
  • The university requires all students to ....
  • It is necessary to ....
  • Shut the door.
  • Follow me.
  • Listen!

Offering

  • Would you like a ...?
  • Would you care for some ...?
  • How about a ...?
  • Can I get you a ...?
  • Can I ...?
  • I'll ....
  • Why don't I ...?
  • Is there anything I can do?
  • Shall I ...?
  • Would you like me to ...?

Predicting

Percentage

Certainty

  Verbs
100%

certain(ly)
definite(ly)
undoubtedly
clearly

presumably
probably/probable
likely

conceivably
possibly/possible
perhaps
maybe

Of course, it'll ....
It's sure to ....
There's no doubt that it'll ...
It's bound to ....

I expect it'll ....
I wouldn't be surprised if it ...ed.
I bet it'll ....

There's a chance it'll ....
It's possible that it'll ....
It might possibly ....
I suppose it might ....

will
is/are
must
have to

should
ought to

can
could
may
might


0%

uncertain
unlikely

 

certain(ly) not
definite(ly) not

I doubt if it'll ...
I don't think it'll ...
There's not much chance of it ...ing.

Of course, it won't ...
There's no chance of it ...ing.
I'm absolutely sure it won't ...

could not
will not
cannot
is/are not

Presenting and discussing results

  • The results show ....
  • The data suggest that ....
  • As we can see, ....
  • As the graph shows, ....
  • We have seen that ....

Referring to research

If you agree with what the writer says.

  • The work of X indicates that ...
  • The work of X reveals that ...
  • The work of X shows that ...
  • Turning to X, one finds that ...
  • Reference to X reveals that ...
  • In a study of Y, X found that ...
  • As X points out, ...
  • As X has indicated ...
  • A study by X shows that ...
  • X has drawn attention to the fact that ...
  • X argues that ...
  • X points out that ...
  • X makes clear that ...

If you disagree with what the writer says.

  • X claims that ...
  • The work of X asserts that ...
  • X feels that ...

If you do not want to give your opinion about what the writer says.

  • According to X...
  • It is the view of X that ...
  • The opinion of X is that ...
  • In an article by X, ...
  • Research by X suggests that ...
  • X has expressed a similar view.
  • X reports that ...
  • X notes that ...
  • X states that ...
  • X observes that ...
  • X concludes that ...
  • X argues that ...
  • X found that ...
  • X discovered that ...

Quoting

  • As X said/says, "... ..."
  • As X wrote/writes, "... ..."
  • As X commented/comments, "... ..."
  • As X observed/observes, "... ..."
  • As X pointed/points out, "... ..."
  • To quote from X, "... ..."
  • It was X who said that "... ..."
  • This example is given by X: "... ..."
  • According to X, "... ..."
  • X claims that, "... ..."
  • X found that, "... ..."
  • The opinion of X is that, "... ..."
  • As X stated/states, "... ..."

Requesting

  • May I ...?
  • Could I ...?
  • Would you ...?
  • Can I ...?
  • Can you ...?
  • Will you ...?
  • I'd like to ..., please.
  • I'm interested in ....
  • Would you mind ...ing.
  • I wonder if you'd mind ...ing.

Rephrasing

In other words,
Or rather,
That is to say,
Basically
To put it another way,
If we put that another way,
I mean
By which I mean
Or you could say
The point I'm making is
That is to say,
That is,
Namely,
i.e.
That means

   .   

What I

'm suggesting
'm trying to say
meant to say
should have said

is

Let me put it another way

Sequencing

Firstly,

The first step is

First of all,

The first stage is

To begin with,

. begins with

Initially

. commences with

 

 

Beforehand,

Before this,

Previously,

Prior to this,

Earlier,

 

 

 

At the same time,

During

Simultaneously,

When this happens

 

While

 

 

Secondly, Thirdly etc

After this,

Next,

The next step is

Then,

In the next stage,

Subsequently,

In the following stage,

Later,

Following this,

 

As soon as the committee has finished its work, .

 

 

Eventually,

. until .

Lastly

. finishes with .

Finally,

concludes with

In the last stage,

The last step is .

Speeding up things

  • Can we move on to the next point, please.
  • We need to move on quickly, now.
  • The next point is .
  • Sorry, that's all we have time for.
  • I think we'd better end now.

Suggesting

  • I suggest we move on to the next point.
  • You can read these two chapters before tomorrow.
  • You could be rewriting the report while we're away
  • You might have to look at this book
  • Why don't you call me tomorrow.
  • Shall we move on to the next point.
  • Let's enjoy ourselves.
  • Why don't we have a break.
  • What about having a break.

Summarising

  • It was generally felt that .
  • Generally speaking, we felt .
  • On the whole .
  • We couldn't agree on .
  • Opinion was divided on .
  • We had some difficulty in deciding .
  • We decided that the best way was to .
  • After some discussion we reached a compromise on .

Using visuals

  • On this graph, ..
  • Take a look at this.
  • Let's have a look at this.
  • I'd like you to look at this.
  • I'd like to draw your attention to ..
  • Here we can see ..
  • The . represents ..
  • The graph illustrates ..
  • As you can see, ..
  • If you look closely, you'll see ..

Warning

  • Look out.
  • Be careful.
  • I warn you it's going to be difficult.
  • If you're not careful, there might be an accident.