Sunday, 8 March 2009

Business Basics International Edition

Business Basics International Edition –David Grant & Robert McLarty
Oxford University Press ISBN 978-3-06-800050-2

This book is an updated edition of the popular Business Basics focusing it especially on the International market. While keeping the style and features of the previous edition it has added listening material using North American accents as well as non-native speakers of English. This adds realism from modern business life, as most of our students use their English speaking to other non-native speakers.
The free MultiROM has even more language and listening practice and can be played on a computer or a CD player.
It is a good basic book for those students who have done no English since school/ for …years as it revises the basic grammar forms in an up to date business setting. It is suitable for those in work as the activities reflect normal business situations. This business setting is varied but has its main emphasis on representing your company and its products at home and abroad, which are certainly useful topics for a basic or refresher book.
The majority of exercises are of a simple gap-fill type and the practice situations help the learning and revision of appropriate business vocabulary. These types of exercises while less interesting for more advanced students are useful for confidence building in weaker learners. The illustrations are clear and colourful and the grammar tips and language notes are usefully highlighted on the pages.
I tried this book with a group of students who were already using the previous book; we worked on Unit 9, they liked the clear colourful illustrations in preference to those in the older book. The slight language differences were confusing for them as they are used to my British English especially spellings, but they found the listening acceptable and useful.
The language topics were useful and easily transferred to a real life work situation.
I particularly liked the simple writing exercises, as writing is not a popular topic for my students; these are well scaffolded, interesting and most importantly relevant.
One point that they did not like were the games, my students are not fans of this type of activity, but they did like the short reading passages, which had lots of scope for discussion.
I would recommend this book for a false beginners group who you are leading towards BEC Preliminary exams, it would provide a good foundation, or for business people who must start to go on trips abroad, perhaps in a group, who have not travelled on business before.

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