SYNTACTIC AND PRAGMATIC FEATURES OF ENGLISH TAG QUESTION

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MINISTRY OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING HANOI OPEN UNIVERSITY LÊ THỊ TỐ UYÊN SYNTACTIC AND PRAGMATIC FEATURES OF ENGLISH TAG QUESTION (ĐẶC ĐIỂM CÚ PHÁP VÀ NGỮ DỤNG HỌC CỦA CÂU HỎI TÁCH BIỆT TRONG TIẾNG ANH) M.A THESIS Field: English Language Code: 8220201 Hanoi, 2019 MINISTRY OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING HANOI OPEN UNIVERSITY M.A THESIS Field: English Language Code: 8220201 SYNTACTIC AND PRAGMATIC FEATURES OF ENGLISH TAG QUESTION (ĐẶC ĐIỂM CÚ PHÁP VÀ NGỮ DỤNG HỌC CỦA CÂU HỎI TÁCH BIỆT TRONG TIẾNG ANH) LÊ THỊ TỐ UYÊN Supervisor: Assoc Prof Dr Vo Dai Quang Hanoi, 2019 STATEMENT OF AUTHORSHIP I, the undersigned, hereby certify my authority of the study project report entitled “The syntactic and pragmatic features of English tag question” submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master in English Language Except where the reference is indicated, no other person‟s work has been used without due acknowledgement in the text of the thesis Hanoi, 2019 Le Thi To Uyen Approved by SUPERVISOR Assoc Prof Vo Dai Quang, Ph,D Date:…………………………… i ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This thesis could not have been completed without the help and support from a number of people I would like, hereby, to express my profound gratitude to my supervisor Assoc Prof Dr Vo Dai Quang who has patiently and constantly supported me through the stages of the study, and whose stimulating ideas, expertise, and suggestions have inspired me greatly through my growth as an academic researcher Also, I am very grateful to all the teachers at the Faculty of Postgraduate Studies of Hanoi Open University for their interesting and useful lectures which have built in me a firm foundation with immense ideas for the fulfillment of this paper In conducting this research, I have benefited a lot of ideas from the research work: “The Syntax and Pragmatics o f English Tag Questions: A Study o f Adult Arabic Learners of English” by Imad Al-Nabtiti” Last but not least, I should also express my heartfelt thanks to my family who have supported me a lot during my studies and my research work as well ii ABSTRACT In English, tag questions play an important part in communicative process People are not able to communicate well without making and answering questions In reality, people make tag question for confirmation or checking information It is obvious that tag questions cannot be missed in communication However, there are several problems when using tag questions Therefore, the purpose of this study is to describe the syntactic and pragmatic features of English tag questions This study used both quantitative and qualitative methods as the main ones In addition, a descriptive method was also used to shed light into the features of these English structures in terms of syntax and pragmatic Finally, some other methods and techniques such as statistical technique and error method were also used by the writer of this paper to measure the chosen participants‟ ability to respond to a written test and an oral test In the previous research, the syntactic and pragmatic features were shown However, this study‟s contributions are: describing the syntactic and pragmatic features of English tag question and pointing out the commonly errors committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school and the solutions to the errors will be recommended These findings will be useful iii LIST OF TABLES Table Word order in English tag questions Table Canonical TQs identified in English by various authors 18 Table Word order in English tag questions in the written test 29 Table The typical intonation of English tag questions 33 Table Summary of errors made by participants on the oral and 36 written test Table Rhetorical tag question 41 Table Verb tenses in English tag question 46 Table Intonation of English tag questions based on pragmatic 47 function LIST OF FIGURES Chart Types of English tag questions iv 30 TABLE OF CONTENTS STATEMENT OF AUTHORSHIP i ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ii ABSTRACT iii LIST OF TABLES iv LIST OF FIGURES iv Chapter 1: INTRODUCTION 1.1 Rationale for the Study 1.2 Aims and Objectives of the study 1.2.1 Aims of the study 1.2.2 Objectives of the study 1.3 Research questions 1.4 Methods of the study 1.5 Scope of the study 1.6 Significance of the study 1.6.1 Theoretical significance 1.6.2 Practical significance 1.7 Design of the study CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW 2.1 Previous studies 2.2 Theoretical background 2.2.1 An overview of syntactic features 2.2.2 An overview of pragmatic features 12 2.2.3 Summary 19 Chapter 3: METHODOLOGY 20 3.1 Approaches 20 3.2 Methods 25 3.3 Data collection instruments 26 3.4 Data analysis technique 27 Chapter 4: FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION 28 4.1 Syntactic features of tag question in English 28 4.2 Pragmatic features of tag question in English 37 4.3 The possible solutions for learning and teaching English tag question at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school 43 4.4 Summary 47 Chapter 5: CONCLUSION 48 5.1 Recapitulation 48 5.2 Concluding remarks 48 5.2 Limitations of the current research 50 5.3 Recommendations/Suggestions for further study 50 REFERENCES 51 Book 51 Website 52 Chapter 1: INTRODUCTION 1.1 Rationale for the Study Tag Questions are important devices in the English language and are used very often by native speakers Almost all languages have tag questions; however, Canonical Tag Questions are unique to the English language (Bublitz, 1979) and mastering them requires a high level of proficiency in English (Holmes, 1982) In terms of formal properties, canonical English tag questions are sensitive to three main factors: the choice of auxiliary and pronoun, polarity (negation), and intonation pattern Even though the general uses of tag questions follow the described constraints, their actual use in real life appears to be much more complex (Ann, 2011, p 6) Students over the world find learning question tags in English confusing and difficulty because some Asian languages don‟t have question tags The results of the survey in Vietnamese students' classrooms are also given the fact that English tag questions is still limited because of commonly mistakes To overcoming these obstacles is probably a big challenge for students This is also the reason why students lack confidence in using English tag questions to communicate This study investigates to find out what are the syntactic and pragmatic features of English tag questions The results of the study reveal that non-native speakers cannot use Canonical Tag Questions appropriately because of the syntactic complexity of these kinds of questions, but because of their pragmatic requirements The results also show possible solutions to mistakes commonly committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh khai high school 1.2 Aims and Objectives of the study 1.2.1 Aims of the study This research is aimed at helping students to have an insightful look at the syntactic and pragmatic features of English tag question The findings of this research are expected to improve the ability to use English tag question effectively; particularly, in the teaching and learning of English tag question 1.2.2 Objectives of the study To achieve the aims mentioned above, following objectives are put forward: (1) Describing the syntactic and pragmatics features of English tag questions; (2) Pointing out possible solutions for mistakes commonly committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh khai high school when they use English tag question 1.3 Research questions The paper will attempt to answer three following questions: • What are the syntactic and pragmatic features of tag question? • What are the mistakes commonly committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school? • What are the possible solutions to the mistakes? 1.4 Methods of the study The thesis is conducted by combining the main research approaches which are mixed method, quantitative method , qualitative method which are carried out with the following orientations - Various sources of printed publications as books, articles, journals will be used as the data - Some questionnaire and interview with students at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school 1.5 Scope of the study The scope of the study is the syntactic and pragmatic features of English tag question The survey will be carried out at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school to find out the mistakes commonly committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school aggressive tag questions), or involving the interlocutor in conversation (facilitative tag questions) Categories Example Informational You‟re getting paid for this, are you? Confirmatory I don‟t need a jacket, I? Attitudinal she‟ll be in trouble, won‟t she? She often gets her own drinks anyway Peremptory I wasn‟t born yesterday, was I? Aggressive Ernest: I put six eggs on Peggy: you put what? Ernest: put six eggs on, didn‟t I? Teacher: Right, it‟s two, isn‟t it? Facilitative Pupil: Mm Table 6: Rhetorical tag question Take the conversation ( which is the dialogue in the oral test taken in class 109 at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school) below as an example: Student: I‟m not late fix class today, am I? Teacher: Yes, you are In fact, you‟re 15 minutes late You missed your bus again, didn‟t you? Student: Yes, unfortunately I did I am really sorry about that But I can still come into class, can‟t I? Teacher: Yes, you can And I assume you‟ve forgotten your homework again, haven‟t you? Student: But we didn‟t have any homework for today, did we? Teacher: Yes, you did You should have done exercises and S for today‟s class Student: That‟s for Thursday‟s class, isn‟t it? 41 Teacher: That‟s right and today is Thursday, isn‟t it? Student: Oops, I am afraid I made a mistake, I thought today was Wednesday But I can still hand it in tomorrow, can‟t I? Teacher: Welt, I suppose so, but let‟s agree that points will be taken off for lateness Student: Oh, okay Thank you for letting me hand it in late Teacher: But it‟s not going to happen again, ok? Student: No, sure it isn‟t Informational tag questions are: And I assume you’ve forgotten your homework again, haven’t you? That’s for Thursday’s class, isn’t it? That’s right and today is Thursday, isn’t it? Confirmatory tag questions are: I’m not late fix class today, am I? But I can still come into class, can’t I? But we didn’t have any homework for today, did we? But I can still hand it in tomorrow, can’t I? Peremptory tag question is: But it’s not going to happen again, ok? Aggressive tag question is: In fact, you’re 15 minutes late You missed your bus again, didn’t you? The result of the tag question oral test The Pragmatic Test consisted of 16 situations with a tag question on each one and participants were asked to read out loud these situations and the tag questions with the correct intonation The target intonations consisted of rising and falling, depending on whether the tag question was used to seek information (rising intonation) or confirmation (falling intonation) This part is 16 points The second pragmatic test was a conversation between a student and a teacher It consisted of fourteen tag questions, seven produced by the student to ask for information and seven used by teacher to seek information The student‟s tag questions were supposed to end with high intonations and die teacher‟ tag questions were supposed to end with rising intonations Therefore, die target intonations were seven rising and seven falling This part is points The total mark of the oral test is 20 points 42 Besides, the participants are divided into groups Group A is the participants who are good at English and group B is the ones who are not as good as the students in group A Data analysis revealed that Group B could not use the pragmatic functions of English tag questions appropriately The focus of this study was two pragmatic functions: asking for information and seeking confirmation Yet, data analysis showed that group B could use neither of these functions appropriately The scores of participants in the pragmatic tests were very low One reason behind their inability to perform well in the pragmatic test could be their lack of awareness of these pragmatic functions of tag questions and the social context in which these questions are used in This finding supports our hypothesis and was expected because intonation plays a major role in determining the pragmatic functions of tag questions; nonetheless, group B could not use the coned intonation that matched the pragmatic function The scores of the group A on two pragmatic tests were higher than scores of the group B, yet their scores on these two tests were lower than their scores on the Tag Question Written and Oral Tests One possible explanation behind their lower scores could be because their understanding of the social context of the tag questions in the two pragmatic tests was different; as a result, they used the intonation that matched the tag question within that social context 4.3 The possible solutions for learning and teaching English tag question at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school Because the analysis was conducted on the five syntactic categories mentioned in the research questions: polarity, auxiliary, verb tenses, pronominalization, and contraction, some suggestions should be brought out: Polarity: There are several types of tag questions: The first type of tag questions is opposite polarity tag questions She‟s a translator, isn‟t she? (affirmative main clause + negative tag) He hasn‟t arrived yet, has he? (negative main clause + affirmative tag) 43 We can use type question tags when we expect the answer to the question to confirm that what we say in the main clause is true: The second type of question is similar polarity tag questions which consist of an affirmative main clause and an affirmative tag: You‟re Joe‟s cousin, are you? We can use type tags when we not know if the answer is yes or no The intonation is usually a rising tone We can use right and yeah in very informal situations instead of question tags: So, you‟re not coming with us tonight, right? "Everybody" requires "they", you can say "didn't they", "did they", "right/yeah", "you know" in different situations Auxiliary: With auxiliary verbs The question tag uses the same verb as the main part of the sentence If this is an auxiliary verb („have‟, „be‟) then the question tag is made with the auxiliary verb They‟ve gone away for a few days, haven‟t they? They weren‟t here, were they? He had met him before, hadn‟t he? This isn‟t working, is it? Without auxiliary verbs If the main part of the sentence doesn‟t have an auxiliary verb, the question tag uses an appropriate form of „do‟ I said that, didn‟t I? You don‟t recognize me, you? She eats meat, doesn‟t she? Verb tenses: There is one weird exception: the question tag after I am is aren't I For example: I'm in charge of the food, aren't I? In English tag question, when the anchor is positive sentences, the tag is negative and vice versa, which is showed as the table below: 44 Anchor Tag Example Present simple „be‟ is-are/isn‟t-aren‟t - She's Italian, isn't she? - We aren't late, are we? Present simple other don‟t/doesn‟t - They live in London, don't they? - She doesn't have any children, does verbs she? Present continuous is-are/isn‟t-aren‟t - We're working tomorrow, aren't we? - The bus isn't coming, is it? Past simple 'be' was-were/wasn‟t- - It was cold yesterday, wasn't it? weren‟t - She wasn't at home yesterday, was she? Past simple other did /didn‟t - He went to the party last night, didn't verbs he? - They didn't go out last Sunday, did they? Past continuous was-were/wasn‟t- - We were waiting at the station, weren‟t weren't we? - You weren't sleeping, were you? Present perfect has-have/hasn‟t- - They've been to Japan, haven't they? haven‟t - She hasn't eaten all the cake, has she? Present continuous perfect has-have/hasn‟thaven‟t - She's been studying a lot recently, hasn't she? - They haven‟t been working hard, have they? Past perfect had/hadn‟t - He had forgotten his wallet, hadn't he? - We hadn't before, had we? 45 been to London Past perfect had/hadn‟t - We'd been working, hadn't we? continuous - You hadn't been sleeping, had you? Future simple will/won‟t - She'll come at six, won't she? - They won't be late, will they? Future continuous will/won‟t - They'll be arriving soon, won't they? - He won't be studying tonight, will he? Future perfect will/won‟t - They'll have finished before nine, won't they? - She won't have left work before six, will she? Future perfect will/won‟t - She'll have been cooking all day, continuous won't she? - He won't have been travelling all day, will he? Modals can/can‟t - He can help, can't he? - She can't speak Arabic, can she? Modals must/mustn‟t - John must stay, mustn't he? - They mustn't come early, must they? Table 7: Verb tenses in English tag question Pronominalization: The tag question always uses a pronoun that replaces the subject of die host sentence The pronoun in the tag question agrees with the subject in person, number and gender, e.g., “The bay is happy, isn‟t he?” “The little bays are having fun, aren‟t they? “Peter’s sister is a student, isn‟t she?” 46 Contraction: Besides, students should be careful with abbreviation For example, the word “is “and “has “are written is “‟s” The word “had” and “would” have the same abbreviation that is “‟d” Therefore, students should pay more attention when they use English tag questions Intonation Moreover, if students want to improve their intonation when they use English tag questions, they have to fully understand the meaning of the tags On the other word, because there are five categories of English tag questions‟ pragmatic function such as: the informational tag, the confirmatory tag, the self-centered tag, the peremptory tag, and the aggressive tag, some suggestions should be brought out: English tag questions‟ pragmatic Intonation function The informational tag Rising intonation The confirmatory tag Falling intonation The self-centered tag Rising intonation The peremptory tag Falling intonation The aggressive tag Falling intonation Table 8: Intonation of English tag questions based on pragmatic function 4.4 Summary Chapter has points out the syntactic features of tag question in English, the pragmatic features of tag question in English From the statistics on the characteristics of the question, we also provide commonly mistakes committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school Based on these errors, the thesis also offers some suggestions on both the syntactic and the pragmatic aspects for the learner to have an overview and to refer to the solutions in order to learn English tag question better 47 Chapter 5: CONCLUSION 5.1 Recapitulation The thesis has revised the definition of English tag question It has also confirmed the syntactic and pragmatic features of tag questions Then, the common error committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai and the solutions to the errors are stated The questions‟ meaning features are studied under the views of many scholars such as Imad Al-Nabtiti (2012) reveals that non-native speakers cannot use Canonical Tag Questions appropriately not because of the syntactic complexity of these kinds of questions, but because of their pragmatic requirements The results also show the importance of incorporating a pragmatic theory and the social contexts in which discourses take place in ESL curricula Besides, Gunnel Tottie and Sebastian Hoffmann (2009) states that Canonical tag questions in Present-day English (PDE) have received ample coverage in the literature, but their historical development has so far been given little attention, etc The thesis has used a written test that has 32 questions and a oral test that is a conversation The survey was carried out in the class 10A9 at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school Based on this material, the author of the thesis has performed the tasks of describing, analyzing and discussing English tag questions Apply the results of the study to improve the learning English tag question in Vietnam 5.2 Concluding remarks - Concluding remarks on objective (research question 1) + Objective I restated that: What are the syntactic and pragmatic features of tag question? + Remark: The syntactic features of English tag question are indicated Firstly, word order of English tag questions are reversed or constant polarity in the main clause, henceforth called the anchor, and in the tag The subject of the anchor can be 48 any noun, a pronoun, or there, and the verb can be of any type, but in the tag, the subject must be either a personal pronoun, one, or there, and the operator can only be a form of have, be, or do, or a modal verb Secondly, there are two kinds of tag questions in the English language: The grammatically complex tag form, ex: “There is a book, isn‟t there?” ; and the grammatically simple tag form, ex:” right/ ok?” Finally, the typical intonation of the tag may be either rising or falling, and occurs on the operator Besides, the study points out the pragmatic feature of tag question The pragmatic functions of English tag questions are classified into five categories: the informational tag, the confirmatory tag, the self- centered tag, the peremptory tag, and the aggressive tag Beside, the pragmatic functions of tag questions are a controversial issue Based on the meaning, the pragmatic functions of English tag questions are classified into five categories: the informational tag, the confirmatory tag, the self-centered tag, the peremptory tag, and the aggressive tag The focus of this study is on the first two pragmatic functions: the „informational tag‟ and the “confirmatory tag” In other words, this study will test only two pragmatic functions o f tag questions: asking for information and seeking confirmation Genuine tag question it is said that tag questions originated as “pure” information-seeking questions, and that they only gradually developed the full range of pragmatic functions that are available today Tag question is used to check information or to ask for agreement If we use a rising intonation in the tag, we not know or are not quite sure of the answer If we use a falling intonation in the tag, we are seeking the agreement of the person we are talking to We can reply to tag questions either with simple yes/no answers (negative tags normally expect a yes answer and positive tags normally expect a no answer) or by using yes/no + auxiliary verb Finally, rhetorical tag question is by forming a question right after a statement to mean the opposite of what you said Except the purpose of seeking information, its aims are also confirmation, and affective tag questions, which perform various discourse functions such as expressing speaker opinion or attitude (attitudinal tag questions), challenging or 49 putting down an addressee (peremptory and aggressive tag questions), or involving the interlocutor in conversation (facilitative tag questions) - Concluding remarks on objective (research question 2) + Objective I restated that: What are the mistakes commonly committed by students at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school? + Remark: The participants commonly make the five errors about: polarity, auxiliary, verb tenses, pronominalization, and contraction As a result, the possible solutions are mentioned in 4.3 - Concluding remarks on objective (research question 3) + Objective I restated that: What are the solutions for the mistakes? + Remark: Based on the mentioned mistakes, the research points out the solutions that students can follow to improve their English tag question in part 4.3 5.2 Limitations of the current research The limitation of the study is that this research is carried out in just one class at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai high school What I mean by this is that there are too few students who participant in the survey Because of the very tiny aspect of the field, the application may be practiced in the class 5.3 Recommendations/Suggestions for further study For future research, it is suggested that a greater sample be obtained in order to allow for the possibility of the development and validation of an instrument to determine English tag question and their meaning, which may be used to as to gather quantitative data This would allow for the comparison to be more standardized 50 REFERENCES Book Al-Nabtiti, I (2012) The Syntax and Pragmatics o f English Tag Questions: A Study o f Adult Arabic Learners o f English Ontario: Carleton University Chomsky, N (2002) Syntactic structure Newyork: Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG King, L A (2016) Experience schychology California: Cram101 Incorporated Cresswell, J W (2013) Research design : qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches Nebraska: University Nebraska - Lincoln YILDIZLI, A (2017) pragmatic and conversational functions of tag questions in Turkish: Comparison between natural speech and classroom setting Ankara: Hacettepe University Graduate School of Social Sciences Khansir, A A (2012) Error Analysis and Second Language Acquisition Finland: Academy Ann, J.-b K.-y (2011) English Tag Questions: Corpus Findings and Theoretical Implications Seattle: University of washington Hoffmann, G T (2009) Tag Questions in English The First Century Pennsylvania state: Journal of English Linguistics Maurits, L (2011) Representation, information theory and basic word order School of Psychology Nolan, F (2014) Intonation UK: Linguistics at Cambridge Svenonius, P (2017 ) Syntactic Features C, G N L E E (1983) Principles of Pragmatics London: Longman Silalahi, P V (1945) A highlight on pragmatics 83 Israel, M (2014) The Pragmatics of Polarity 51 Website Bhat, A (2018) Quantitative research: Definition, methods, types and example Retrieved from https://www.questionpro.com/blog/quantitativeresearch/ Ashley Crossman (2018) An Overview of Qualitative Research Methods Retrieved from thoughtco.com: https://www.thoughtco.com/qualitativeresearch-methods-3026555 Brittanica (1995) Linguistics Retrieved from https://files.ifi.uzh.ch/cl/volk/SyntaxVorl/SyntaxDef.html Keller, B (2012) Noam Chomsky Examined Retrieved from http://examiningpublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2012/01/noam-chomskyexamined_28.html 52 APPENDIX The written test I am late, …… I a aren‟t b am not c isn‟t et‟s go, …… we? a will b are c shall Neither of them complained, …… they? a didn‟t b did c are Everyone warned you, didn‟t ……? a they b everyone c it Everything is good, isn‟t ……? a it b everything c thing Yes, they don‟t come cheap, … they? a are b c don‟t I wish to study English, …… I ? b don‟t a am c may One can be one‟s master, can‟t …… ? a you b they c it They must study hard, …… they? a mustn‟t 10 b don‟t c needn‟t et‟s go out, …… we ? a will b shall c 11 What a beautiful dress, …… it ? a isn‟t b is c will 12 I think he will come here, …… …… ? a don‟t I b won‟t I c won‟t he 13 It seems that you are right, …… …… ? a aren‟t you b doesn‟t it c isn‟t it 14 What you have said is wrong, …… …… ? a don‟t you b isn‟t it c haven‟t you 15 He‟s lost in a busy street, …… he? a isn‟t b hasn‟t c is 16 She‟d rather stay at home tonight, …… she? a hadn‟t b had c wouldn‟t 53 The oral test In the following activity on have 16 situations with comments on each one Read the situation first and then the comment to show your intonation that is correspondent with each mentioned situation Peter has trouble reading signs He really needs new glasses, when he‟s driving doesn't he? Sally is looking very happy She doesn't have a new boyfriend, today does she? Frank looked panicked when he He forgot to bring the report, didn't opened his briefcase he? You two look so much alike You're twins, aren't you? Tom never eats cheese or ice He isn‟t allergic to dairy like his cream sister, is he? Everyone noticed wasn‟t at the party that Mary She wasn‟t invited to the party, was she? Kathy didn't attend the meeting She doesn‟t have a headache again, today does she? Jane looks like she is gaining She hasn't been exercising much, weight has she? Peter did really well in the race He didn't win first prize, did he? today 10 David took the bus to work today He doesn't have a car, does he? 11 John was absent from work this But he didn‟t have another doctor‟s afternoon appointment, did he? 12 Mike is so tired this morning; he But he wasn‟t out partying last fell asleep m class night, was he? 13 The little boy looks so angry His sister broke his new toy again, didn‟t she? 14 Ann has a cast on her right leg She broke her leg again, didn't she? 15 Susan came back from shopping She didn‟t buy a new TV, did she? with a huge box 16 George is looking quite depressed But he didn‟t lose his Job, did he? after his meeting with his boss 54 The following activity is a conversation between a teacher and a student who usually comes to doss late and forgets his assignments Read the conversation aloud to identify the intonation Student: I‟m not late fix class today, am I? Teacher: Yes, you are In fact, you‟re 15 minutes late You missed your bus again, didn‟t you? Student: Yes, unfortunately I did I am really sorry about that But I can still come into class, can‟t I? Teacher: Yes, you can And I assume you‟ve forgotten your homework again, haven‟t you? Student: But we didn‟t have any homework for today, did we? Teacher: Yes, you did You should have done exercises and S for today‟s class Student: That‟s for Thursday‟s class, isn‟t it? Teacher: That‟s right and today is Thursday, isn‟t it? Student: Oops, I am afraid I made a mistake, I thought today was Wednesday But I can still hand it in tomorrow, can‟t I Teacher: Welt, I suppose so, but let‟s agree that points will be taken off for lateness Student: Oh, okay Thank you for letting me hand it in late Teacher: But it‟s not going to happen again, ok? Student: No, sure it isn‟t Later in class Teacher: Okay class and now it‟s tune for the quiz The same student raises up his hand Teacher: Yes Student: But we don‟t have a quiz today, we? Teacher: Yes, we Last week we agreed to have our second quiz today, didn‟t we? Student: Oh, yeah! I am afraid I made another mistake Teacher: Sounds like you should write everything down in your agenda, shouldn‟t you? Student: Yes, you‟re right again But we can still it tomorrow, can‟t we? Teacher: No I am afraid this time you‟re out of luck But it never hurts to ask, does it? 55 ... intonation of English tag question On the level of pragmatic study, we focus on the pragmatic axis of English tag question, Pragmatic function of English tag question, genuine tag question, and rhetorical... indicates the features of tag questions in English with their Vietnamese equivalents in terms of syntactic and semantic features The author makes comparison of tag questions between English and Vietnamese... FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION 28 4.1 Syntactic features of tag question in English 28 4.2 Pragmatic features of tag question in English 37 4.3 The possible solutions for learning and
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