Using Phrasal Verbs

Elizabeth Walter and Kate Woodford (Delta Publishing 2011)
ISBN 978-1-905085-53-8
This book is supposed to be suitable for intermediate to upper-intermediate level students.

It has 24 chapters with different themes with a review after every four. There are coloured illustrations and a variety of types[?] of texts and exercises, as it boasts on the back.

The language seems to be fairly straightforward in the longest reading passages. A CD with listening exercises to match each chapter is included in the price. These are not so testing, as the passage is given in the textbook. This book’s purpose is to help students to learn phrasal verbs – as it says, it ‘helps learners to understand phrasal verbs, but also helps them learn when and how to use phrasal verbs successfully.’ However, in the chapters the phrasal verbs are not always printed in bold or underlined or boxed. They are in among the text instead, making it very difficult for students to remember them, unless they have written them down (with meanings for themselves). Even the glossary at the back does not give meanings opposite them for quick reference. I am surprised that the authors are involved in dictionaries and lexicography and yet did not think it important to have the meanings and verbs side-by-side somewhere in the book. Having tried this out with a good intermediate student, I am disappointed in it for the reasons given above and would not to be too keen to recommend it to colleagues.


Patricia Findlay
(February 2012)