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What is Special about

Business English?
(part 2)
Language in Context and Teaching
Business Communication

English for Business

Group 2 Class 4 C
English Department
Dini Handayani
Ratu Anggraini Nahdiyah
Rini Indah Nurafsari
Riska Lestari

A. Language in Context
Consider the following exchanges!

A : Excuse me.
B : Hi. Can I help you?
A : I hope so. Im
looking for room
235. Mr. Jenskins
B : Yes, of course. Its
just round the
corner, over there.


: What dyou, think?

: Yes, alright.
: By Friday?
: I said yes, ok?

Both these exchanges could be described as everyday

But, lets consider it in business context! How?

Lets consider it in business

The first exchange might be a
business person visiting a
suppliers factory
The second might be two
colleagues discussing an
important deadline.

In business communities, they often use

English in business context. For example:
Accountants use the language of accounting
(specific lexis) to talk about accounting
matters (specific context).
Sales engineers use specific language to
discuss their product specifications with
their costumers.
Here are the example of business English
Can we talk about gearing after lunch? Im
hungry. (in accounting)
Maybe we need to revisit the escalation
clause? (in real estate)
Its OTC (over the counter, in e.g. Retail

Things which make

business English distinctive:
Business people do a variety of things
with language; they socialize, predict,
negotiate, buy, persuade, deal, and
more. So business people must have
business communications skills.
English in international business is a
lingua franca. It may even be considered
a new type of English which has
developed and is developing to meet the
needs of its users.
There are many areas of business
English. Where there is not much reliable
information on what people actually say.

B. Teaching Business
Business English is not only about
language, but about language use, it is
worth first considering the issue of
communicative competence.

Business English Teachers need

to focus on three key
components in particular:
linguistic competence,
discourse competence, and
intercultural competence.

1. Linguistic competence
The use of basic elements that go together to form a
language, such as vocabulary, grammar, phonology,
and so on.
One of the key influences on business English teaching has been
the deepening understanding of the role of lexis (words and
patterns of words) and its relationship with grammar (the way
patterns follow rules).

words (nouns,
The Longman
Grammar of Spoken
and Written English Function
divided words into
three types:
coordinators, why-words)
Inserts (yeah, well, ouch)

2. Discourse competence
Discourse competence deals with language in use.
Discourse is how people interact with each other
within context.

The participants in the discourse

have to communicate within
different context. In this case is
business context. In a business
meeting like sign a major contract
with partners, we have to use a
business type of lexis and

3. Intercultural competence

This is an illustration of what can happen when

people from different cultures meet to do a
business meeting.

How to change basic English into business


Thank you!