English for Oil and Gas

Jon Naunton and Alison Pohl (series: Oxford English for Careers – OUP 2011)
ISBN 978-0-19-456968-2 [SB,TB,CDs]
These materials are aimed at B2 level students and are intended as preparation for work in the oil and gas industries. The blurb claims to ‘give you the language, information and skills you need to start your career.

There are 15 units with topics arranged in a linear style from the history of oil to the future of the industry, covering the discovery of oil and production process, environmental concerns and health and safety, among others. Each topic has an ‘It’s my job’ contribution from a variety of personnel in the field. The student’s book concludes with career opportunities and useful exercises related to finding jobs in the industry.

The well-structured Contents page makes the student’s book very easy to navigate. The units are eye-catchingly arranged with a mixture of animations and authentic images. Each unit covers all 4 language skills and has a ‘Kick off’ introduction to the topic, finishing with a list of key words and a checklist of progress made, for self-evaluation by students. There is also a reading bank, grammar reference section with examples based on industry-related language as well as a glossary at the end of the book.
In addition, the Teacher’s Resource Book offers additional material including photocopiable grammar exercises, tests, games and role play tasks related to each topic in the Student’s Book. The 2 audio CDs use a variety of international English accents, which reflect the range of nationalities involved in a global industry with one, rather odd, robotic-sounding contributor.

I haven’t used these books with a student, although I have shown them to someone who works in the field who feels the contents are relevant, interesting, contemporary and an excellent introduction to the industry for ESOL students.

To sum up, I feel the materials live up to the blurb and would be a valuable resource for interested students.

Mary Gillespie
Volunteer ESOL Tutor, Clackmannanshire
Freelance ESOL Tutor, Perth and Kinross