Date: Sat, 12 Feb 1994 01:20:49 CST


Subject: English Grammar

Tim Frazer asked what weuns all use in our courses in English grammar. I'm

reporting what we use at Mizzou, not necessarily making a recommendation.

We've been using _Englsih_Grammar:_Principles_and_Facts_, by Jeffrey P.

Kaplan (Prentice Hall, 1989) for 3 or 4 years and have been fairly well

pleased with it -- for our purposes. One has to explain away some little

things like /ey/ but not /ow/ in his phonetic transcription, and make other

adjustments. But if the aim of the course is to give a brief introduction

to notions of prescription/description, a brief swipe at phonetics and

phonological rules, and a fair introduction to syntactic argumentation using

some X-bar notation and principles, it's a usable book. You can even cover

the basic grammatical terminology with it, but not give a basic grounding in

traditional grammar. We're likely to change books in the fall, not because

we've found something better but because we're tired of teaching the book and

want to freshen up the course. But the University of Missouri takes in only

the top 30% of the applicants, whereas Western Illinois has a lower cut-off

point for acceptance. Makes a difference. I wanted to give a more positive

report on this particular book than I saw earlier. Our course is required of

English Ed and Speech Path majors and is taken by lots of English lit majors

who have some interest in language. We'vehad 90-110 per semester,in 2 or

3 sections. DMLance