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CAMBRIDGE LANGUAGE TEACHING LIBRARY A series covering central issues in language teaching and learning, by authors Who have expert knowledge in their field In this series: Affect in Language Learning edited by Jane Arnold Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching by Jack C. Richards and Theodore S, Rodgers Appropriate Methodology and Social Context by Advian Holliday Beyond Training by Jack C. Richards Collaborative Action Research For English Language Teachers by Anne Burns Collaborative Language Learning and Teaching edited by David Nunan ‘Communicative Language Teaching by Wiliam: Littlew-ood Communicative Methodology in Language Teaching by Christopher Bruit Course Design by Fraida Dubin and Elite Olshtain Culture Bound edited by Joyce Merrill Valdes Designing Tasks for the Communicative Classroom by David Numan Developing Reading Skills by Francoise Grellet Developments in ESP by Tony Dudley-Fvans and Maggie Jo St Job Discourse Analysis for Language Teachers by Michael McCarthy Discourse and Language Education by Evelyn Hatch English for Academic Purposes by R.R. Jordan English for Specific Purposes by Tom Hutchinsom and Alan Waters Focus on the Language Classroom by Dick Allwright and Kathleen M, Bailey Foreign and Second Language Learning by Wiliam Littlewood Language Learning in Intercultural Perspective edited by Michael Byram ‘and Michael Fleming The Language Teaching Matrix by Jack C. Richards Language Test Conseruction and Evaluatioa by j. Charles Alderson, Caroline Clapham and Dianne Wall Learner-centredness as Language Education by la Tudor ‘Managing Curricular Innovation by Nuana Markee Materials Development in Language Teaching edited by Brain Tomlinson Psychology for Langauage Teachers by Marion Williams and Robert L. Burden Research Methods in Language Learning by David Nunan Second Language Teacher Education edited by Jack C. Richards and David Numan Society and the Language Classroom edited by Hywel Coleman “Teacher Learning in Language Teaching edited by Donald Freeman and Jack C. Richards ‘Teaching the Spoken Language by Gillian Brown and George Yule Understanding Research in Second Language Learning by James D. Brown Vocabulary: Description, Acquisition and Pedagogy edited by Norbert Schmite and Michael McCarthy Vocabulary, Semantics, and Language Education by Evelyn Hatch and Cheryl Brown Voices from the Language Classroom edited by Kathleen M. Bailey and David Nunan Designing Tasks for the Communicative Classroom David Nunan National Centre for English Language Teaching and Research, Macquarie University, Sydney WAY TL UNIVERSITY PRESS a (CAMBRIDGE ‘The Pitt Building, Trumpington Street, Cambridge, United Kingdom ‘The Edinburgh Building, Cambridge cx2 2nu, UK 40 West 2oth Stet, New York, NY 10013—q211, USA 1 Stamford Road, Oakleigh, vic $266, Australia Raz de Alarc6n 13, 28014 Madrid, Spain Dock House, The Waterfront, Cape Town Soor, South Aries heepsivwwcambridge org © Cambridge University Press 1989 ‘This book is in copyright. Subject ro statutory exception and to the provisions of relevane collective licensing agreements, tno reproduction of any part may take place without the writen permission of Cambridge University Pres. First published 1985 Fifteenth printing 2001 Printed in the United Kingdom atthe University Press, Cambridge Library of Congress Cataloguing in Publication Data ‘Nunan, David. Designing tasks for the communicative classroom / David Nuns pcm ~ (Cambridge language teaching library) Includes bibliographies and index. 1. Language and languages ~ Study and teaching. 2. Communicative competence. I. Title Il. Series. Pss.NB6 1989 28.007 —dexe 88-3288 CIP British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data ‘Nunan, David Designing tasks fr the communicative cl (Cambridge language teaching library). ~ 1. Foreign languages. Teaching. L Title, 418.007 tsa o $21 37014 0 hardback 1saw 0 522 37915 6 paperback Dedication To Jennifer and Rebecca for the unread stories and the unplayed games OFZ Hp Contents Acknowledgements ix Introduction — 1 Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Learning tasks and the language curriculum 1.1 Introduction 5 ‘Task’ defined and described 5 Communicative language teaching 12 Curriculum development and learning tasks 14 The role of the learner 19 clusion 20 References and further reading 21 Analysing language skills 2.1 Introduction 22 2.2 The nature of listening comprehension 23 2.3 The nature of speaking and oral interaction 26 2.4 The nature of reading comprehension 32 2.5 The nature of writing 35 2.6 Implications for task design 37 2.7 Task rationale 40 28 Conclusion 45 References and further reading 45 Task components 3.1 Introduction: identifying task components 47 3.2 Goals 48 3.3 Input 53 3.4 Activities 59 3.5 Conclusion 77 References and further reading 77 Roles and settings in the language class 4.1 Introduction 79 4.2 Learner roles 79 43 Teacher roles 84 4:4 Roles in the communicative classroom 86