Main English Collocations in Use Advanced
English Collocations in Use AdvancedFelicity O’Dell, Michael McCarthy
Improve your fluency and sound more natural in English. Collocations are combinations of words which frequently appear together. This book contains explanations and practice of English collocations for advanced-level (C1 to C2) learners of English. Perfect for both self-study and classroom activities. Learn collocations in context, with lots of different topics, including 'Writing essays, assignments and reports'. Be confident about what you are learning, thanks to Cambridge research into how English is really spoken and written, and get better at studying by yourself, with study tips and follow-up activities. This book is also perfect for preparing for Cambridge exams and IELTS, which often test knowledge of collocations.
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ENGLISH COLLOCATIONS How words work together for fluent and natural English Self-study and classroom use IN USE Second Edition Advanced Felicity O’Dell Michael McCarthy English collocations How words work together for fluent and natural English Self-study and classroom use in Use Second Edition Advanced Felicity O’Dell Michael McCarthy University Printing House, Cambridge CB2 8BS, United Kingdom One Liberty Plaza, 20th Floor, New York, NY 10006, USA 477 Williamstown Road, Port Melbourne, VIC 3207, Australia 4843/24, 2nd Floor, Ansari Road, Daryaganj, Delhi – 110002, India 79 Anson Road, #06–04/06, Singapore 079906 Cambridge University Press is part of the University of Cambridge. It furthers the University’s mission by disseminating knowledge in the pursuit of education, learning and research at the highest international levels of excellence. www.cambridge.org Information on this title: www.cambridge.org/9781316629956 © Cambridge University Press 2017 This publication is in copyright. Subject to statutory exception and to the provisions of relevant collective licensing agreements, no reproduction of any part may take place without the written permission of Cambridge University Press. First published 2008 Second edition 2017 20 19 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 Printed in Dubai by Oriental Press A catalogue record for this publication is available from the British Library ISBN 978-1-31-66299-56 Paperback Cambridge University Press has no responsibility for the persistence or accuracy of URLs for external or third-party internet websites referred to in this publication, and does not guarantee that any content on such websites is, or will remain, accurate or appropriate. Information regarding prices, travel timetables, and other factual information given in this work is correct at the time of first printing but Cambridge University Press does not guarantee the accuracy of such information thereafter. Contents Acknowledgements Using this book 3 4 Learning about collocations 1 What is a collocation? 2 Strong, fixed and weak collocations 3 Grammatical categories of collocation 4 Finding and working on collocations in texts 5 Register Varieties of collocations 6 Metaphor 7 Intensifying and softening adverbs 8 Make and verbs that mean make 9 Communicating 10 Collocations with phrasal verbs Topics: work and study 11 Working life 12 New employment 13 Thoughts and ideas 14 Business reports 15 Marketing 16 Customer services 17 Student life 18 Writing essays, assignments and reports Topics: leisure and lifestyle 19 Social life 20 Talking 21 In the news 22 Current affairs 23 Festivals and celebrations 24 Cosmetics and fashion 25 Commuting 26 Travel and adventure 27 Sport 28 Plans and decisions 29 Film and book reviews foot the bill, heavy burden, run into trouble deeply offensive, spotlessly clean, wildly inaccurate make a contribution, make a habit of, turn a profit generally speaking, talk business, get a message across take up office, work up an appetite, see off an intruder make a living, take up a post, move up the ladder fit the job description, land a new job, menial tasks bear in mind, widespread belief, jump to conclusions fierce competition, stimulate growth, hike in prices consumer demands, product development, market share fit for purpose, kick up a fuss, grounds for complaint gifted child, mature student, thirst for knowledge working hypothesis, confront issues, critical analysis call for a celebration, social whirl, play host to juicy gossip, broach the subject, opening gambit declare independence, reach agreement, bow to pressure refuse point-blank, decline to comment, gauge reaction date back to, movable feast, propose a toast flawless complexion, set the trend, fashion victim traffic gridlock, rail network, lengthy tailbacks get itchy feet, off the beaten track, leg of the journey keep in shape, reach fever pitch, score an own goal toy with an idea, tentative suggestion, deciding factor star-studded cast, glowing reviews, hold one’s attention English Collocations in Use Advanced 1 Topics: the modern world minimise danger, grant permission, faceless bureaucrats 30 Regulations and authority dump waste, searing heat, offset carbon emissions 31 The environment back of beyond, rural idyll, urban regeneration 32 Town and country life clear one’s debts, agreed credit limit, identity theft 33 Personal finance 34 The economy curb inflation, safeguard one’s interests, plummeting profits 35 Social issues antisocial behaviour, dysfunctional family, unfit for human habitation 36 Science and technology harness technology, cutting-edge design, Wi-Fi hotspots build up resistance, adverse reaction, shake off a cold 37 Health and medicine 38 Criminal justice custodial sentences, trumped-up charges, beyond reasonable doubt 39 War and peace deploy troops, pre-emptive strike, collateral damage Topics: people lifelong friends, platonic relationship, moral support 40 Friendship child prodigy, go through a midlife crisis, senior moment 41 Youth and age lavish lifestyle, meteoric rise to fame, heap praise on 42 Celebrities and heroes bone idle, poison the atmosphere, nasty piece of work 43 Negative opinions about people act as a referee, accumulate experience, financial acumen 44 References stubborn streak, boundless energy, act one’s age 45 Personality and behaviour Basic concepts 46 Space and time 47 Sound 48 Making things easier 49 Difficulty 50 Quantity and size 51 Change cramped conditions, waste of space, go down in history husky voice, incessant noise, let out a cry viable options, simplicity itself, take the easy way out severe blow, hinder progress, encounter difficulties finite number, endless supply, unknown quantity sweeping changes, would make a change, sudden shift Functions bring a halt to, close off a street, dispel rumours 52 Stopping and starting root cause, provoke an outcry, dire consequences 53 Cause and effect swarm of bees, flurry of activity, stroke of genius 54 Describing groups and amounts 55 Comparing and contrasting bear little resemblance to, polar opposites, draw a comparison between give it one’s best shot, abortive attempt, hard slog 56 Making an effort not lose any sleep, to be brutally honest, be on the go 57 Social English 58 Discussing issues make a commitment, give a straight answer, miss the point nasty shock, take exception to, suffer at the hands of 59 Negative situations and feelings 60 Positive situations and feelings sense of achievement, state of euphoria, derive pleasure from 2 Key 126 Index 160 English Collocations in Use Advanced Thanks and acknowledgements Acknowledgements Joy Goodwin wrote two new units for the Second Edition: Unit 15, Marketing, and Unit 25, Commuting. The publishers would like to thank Joy for her contribution to this edition. The authors and publishers acknowledge the following sources of copyright material and are grateful for the permissions granted. While every effort has been made, it has not always been possible to identify the sources of all the material used, or to trace all copyright holders. If any omissions are brought to our notice, we will be happy to include the appropriate acknowledgements on reprinting & in the next update to the digital edition, as applicable. Text: NI Syndication Limited for the text on p. 12 adapted from ‘I need help with my homework’ by Rebecca O’ Connor, The Times, 24.03.2007. Copyright © NI Syndication Limited; Eye For Film for the text on p. 12 adapted from ‘The Interpreter’ by Angus Wolfe Murray, http://www.eyeforfilm.co.uk/review/ the-interpreter-film-review-by-angus-wolfe-murray. Copyright © 2005 Eye For Film. Reproduced with permission; HostelBookers.com Ltd. for the text on p. 56 adapted from ‘A selection of Great European Train Routes, London-Tangiers’. Copyright © HostelBookers.com Ltd. Reproduced with kind permission. Key: T = Top, B = Below, TR = Top Right, CL = Centre Left, CR = Centre Right, BL = Below Left. Photographs All the photographs are sourced from Getty Images. p. 12: Andersen Ross/Photodisc; p. 24: Eugenio Marongiu/Cultura; p. 26 (TL): Plume Creative/DigitalVision; p. 26 (CL) & p. 90 (photo 1): UpperCut Images; p. 26 (BL): Vladimir Godnik; p. 28 (TR): Yuri_Arcurs/ DigitalVision; p. 28 (BR): Maskot; p. 31: Glow Wellness/Glow; p. 34: Claudia Burlotti/Stone; p. 38: Peter Dazeley; p. 40: Pixtum/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 46: withgod/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 47: Marcy Maloy/Photodisc; p. 50 (TL): kevinjeon00/E+; p. 50 (TR): cynoclub/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 50 (BL): Ned Frisk/Blend Images; p. 52 (TL): CoffeeAndMilk/E+; p. 52 (TR): GARO/PHANIE/Canopy; p. 52 (CL): BSIP/Universal Images Group; p. 52 (BR): CoffeeAndMilk/Vetta; p. 54 (Greg): kali9/E+; p. 54 (Paola): Compassionate Eye Foundation/Steve Smith/The Image Bank; p. 54 (Lars): Thomas Barwick/Iconica; p. 54 (Akiko): DAJ; p. 54 (CR): wdstock/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 56 (T): Hans Neleman/Taxi; p. 56 (B): Nouk/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 57: Natthawat/Moment; p. 58 (TR): Viktoria Ovcharova/EyeEm; p. 58 (C): mgkaya/E+; p. 60 (TL): Compassionate Eye Foundation/DigitalVision; p. 60 (BL), p. 80 (C) & p. 86 (CR): Wavebreakmedia Ltd; p. 63: Jose Luis Pelaez Inc/Blend Images; p. 68 (T) & p. 86 (BR): Westend61; p. 68 (B): buzbuzzer/E+; p. 70: imagestock/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 72: Hill Street Studios/Blend Images; p. 76: Hoxton/Tom Merton/Hoxton; p. 77 (photo 1): slobo/iStock; p. 77 (photo 2): ugurhan/E+; p. 77 (photo 3): Jupiterimages/Photolibrary; p. 77 (photo 4): boggy22/iStock; p. 78: Image Source/Pete Saloutos/Images Source; p. 80 (TL): gradyreese/iStock; p. 80 (TR): razerbird/iStock; p. 80 (BL): kupicoo/E+; p. 80 (BR): Gary Burchell/Taxi; p. 84: Caiaimage/Sam Edwards; p. 86 (TR): Simon Webb & Duncan Nicholls/OJO Images; p. 90 (photo 2): Terry Vine/J Patrick Lane/Bland Images; p. 94: Digital Vision/Photodisc; p. 97: Frank Whitney/ The Image Bank; p. 98: Doree Morse/EyeEm; p. 100: Tom Merton/Caiaimage; p. 101: oscarhdez/iStock; p. 102: Jutta Klee/Canopy; p. 105: Ben Meyer/Cultura; p. 107: Marco Simoni/robertharding; p. 109: Tetra Images; p. 114 (TR): Hero Images; p. 114 (BR): Justin Lewis/Iconica; p. 117 : Nick Dolding/Iconica; p. 118 (TL): drbimages/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 118 (TR): shapecharge/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 118 (BL): RapidEye/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 118 (BR): Inmagineasia; p. 123: BartekSzewczyk/iStock/Getty Images Plus; p. 124: Caiaimage/Tom Merton/OJO+. Illustrations Ludmila (KJA Artists), Katie Mac (NB Illustration) and Miguel Diaz Rivas (Advocate Art). Cambridge Dictionaries Cambridge Dictionaries are the world’s most widely used dictionaries for learners of English. The dictionaries are available in print and online at dictionary.cambridge.org. Copyright © Cambridge University Press, reproduced with permission. The publisher has used its best endeavours to ensure that the URLs for external websites referred to in this book are correct and active at the time of going to press. However, the publisher has no responsibility for the websites and can make no guarantee that a site will remain live or that the content is or will remain appropriate. English Collocations in Use Advanced 3 Using this book What is a collocation? Collocation means a natural combination of words; it refers to the way English words are closely associated with each other. For example, pay and attention go together, as do commit and crime; blond goes with hair and heavy with rain. Why learn collocations? You need to learn collocations because they will help you to speak and write English in a more natural and accurate way. People will probably understand what you mean if you talk about making a crime or say there was very hard rain this morning, but your language will sound unnatural and might perhaps confuse. Did you mean that there was a lot of rain or perhaps that there was a hailstorm? Learning collocations will also help you to increase your range of English vocabulary. For example, you’ll find it easier to avoid words like very or nice or beautiful or get by choosing a word that fits the context better and has a more precise meaning. This is particularly useful if you are taking a written exam in English and want to make a good impression on the examiners. In advanced level exams, marks are often specifically awarded for the appropriate handling of collocations. At an advanced level an appreciation of collocation can also be helpful in terms of appreciating other writers’ use of language. Skilled users of the language may choose to create effects by varying the normal patterns of collocation, with the aim of either startling or amusing their audience. This technique is particularly popular with poets, journalists and advertisers. From an appreciation of the way in which creative writers play with language, you may then even want to move on to use words in more original ways yourself. You are more likely to be able to do this effectively if you have assimilated the standard patterns of language use presented in this book. How were the collocations in this book selected? The collocations presented in this book were mainly selected from those identified as significant by the CANCODE corpus of spoken English, developed at the University of Nottingham in association with Cambridge University Press, and the Cambridge International Corpus of written and spoken English (now known as the Cambridge English Corpus). We also made extensive use of the Cambridge Learner Corpus, a corpus of student language which showed us what kind of collocation errors learners tend to make. These corpora show that there are many thousands of collocations in English. So how could we select which ones would be most useful for you to work on in this book? Firstly, of course, we wanted to choose ones that you might want to use in your own written and spoken English. So, in the unit Health and medicine we include, for example, shake off a cold and respond well to treatment but not grumbling appendix, which is a strong collocation, but one which – we hope – most of you will not feel the need for. Secondly, we decided it would be most useful for you if we focused on those collocations which are not immediately obvious. A pretty girl, a modern car or to buy a ticket are all collocations, but they are combinations which you can easily understand and produce yourself without any problems. So we deal here with less obvious word combinations, for instance, flatly contradict (not strongly contradict) and bitter enemies (not serious enemies). Some of you may have already used our English Collocations in Use targeted at intermediate learners. In general, we have tried to avoid focusing on collocations that we dealt with in that book. An exception is with collocations that the Cambridge Learner Corpus highlighted as causing frequent problems for students, even in advanced level exams. We felt that it would be useful to draw attention to such collocations again, even if we had dealt with them previously. Idioms can be seen as one type of collocation. We deal with them separately in English Idioms in Use, and so do not focus on them here. 4 English Collocations in Use Advanced How is the book organised? The book has 60 two-page units. The left-hand page presents the collocations that are focused on in the unit. You will usually find examples of collocations in typical contexts with, where appropriate, any special notes about their meaning and their usage. The right-hand page checks that you have understood the information on the left-hand page by giving you a series of exercises that practise the material just presented. The units are organised into different sections. First we start with important information relating to learning about collocations in general. Then there is a section focusing on different types of collocation. The rest of the book deals with collocations that relate to particular topics such as Student life or Film and book reviews, concepts such as Sound or Difficulty and functions such as Cause and effect or Comparing and contrasting. The book has a key to all the exercises and an index which lists all the collocations we deal with, and indicates the units where they can be found. How should I use this book? it is strongly recommended that you work through the six introductory units first, so that you become familiar with the nature of collocations and with how best to study them. After that, you may work on the units in any order that suits you. What else do I need in order to work with this book? You need a notebook or file in which you can write down the collocations that you study in this book, as well as any others that you come across elsewhere. You also need to have access to a good dictionary. At this level we strongly recommend the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary as this gives exactly the kind of information that you need to have about collocations. it does this both through the examples provided for each word entry and through special collocations boxes or mini-panels. Your teacher, however, may also be able to recommend other dictionaries that you will find useful. Good modern learners’ dictionaries include example sentences which make a point of illustrating each word’s most frequent collocations. Enormous databases of language, known as corpora, are used to analyse speech and text to identify which words collocate most frequently. Look up the word abject in the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary and you will find the entry below. Notice how frequent collocations are used in the example sentences. For more information about Cambridge dictionaries and to do online searches you could go to: http://dictionary.cambridge.org so, a study of collocation is highly recommended (Unit 7) if you want to impress people with your natural and accurate use of language and to gain more marks (Unit 1) in English exams. Above all, we hope both that this book gives you a thirst for knowledge (Unit 17) about English collocations and also that you will thoroughly enjoy (Unit 7) working through the units in English Collocations in Use Advanced. English Collocations in Use Advanced 5 1 A What is a collocation? What are collocations? A collocation is a combination of two or more words which frequently occur together. If someone says, ‘She’s got yellow hair’, they would probably be understood, but it is not what would ordinarily be said in English. We’d say, ‘She’s got blond hair’. In other words, yellow doesn’t collocate with hair in everyday English. Yellow collocates with, say, flowers or paint. Collocations are not just a matter of how adjectives combine with nouns. They can refer to any kind of typical word combination, for example verb + noun (e.g. arouse someone’s interest, lead a seminar), adverb + adjective (e.g. fundamentally different), adverb + verb (e.g. flatly contradict), noun + noun (e.g. a lick of paint, a team of experts, words of wisdom). There is much more about different grammatical types of collocation in Unit 3. Phrasal verbs (e.g. come up with, run up, adhere to) and compound nouns (e.g. economy drive, stock market) are sometimes described as types of collocations. In this book we consider them as individual lexical items and so usually include them here only in combination with something else, e.g. come up with a suggestion, run up a bill, adhere to your principles, go on an economy drive, play the stock market. However, it is not always easy to separate collocations and compounds and, where they are useful for learners as an important part of the vocabulary of a topic, we include some compounds in this book too. It can be difficult for learners of English to know which words collocate, as natural collocations are not always logical or guessable. There is, for example, no obvious reason why we say making friends rather than getting friends or heavy rain, not strong rain. Learners also need to know when specific collocations are appropriate. This is usually referred to by linguists as knowing which register to use. Alight from a bus is a formal collocation used in notices and other official contexts. In everyday situations we would, of course, always talk about getting off a bus. There is more about register and collocation in Unit 6. B Why is it important to learn collocations? An appreciation of collocation will help you to: • use the words you know more accurately In other words, you’ll make (NOT do) fewer mistakes. • sound more natural when you speak and write By saying, for example, of great importance, rather than of big or high importance, you won’t just be understood, you will – quite rightly – sound like a fluent user of English. • vary your speech and, probably more importantly, your writing Instead of repeating everyday words like very, good or nice, you will be able to exploit a wider range of language. You would gain more marks in an exam, for instance, for writing We had a blissfully happy holiday in a picturesque little village surrounded by spectacular mountains than for We had a very happy holiday in a nice little village surrounded by beautiful mountains, even though both sentences are perfectly correct. • understand when a skilful writer departs from normal patterns of collocation A journalist, poet, advertiser or other inventive user of language often creates an effect by not choosing the expected collocation. For example, a travel article about the Italian capital might be entitled No place like Rome, a reference to the popular expression There’s no place like home. 6 English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 1.1 Match the two parts of these collocations. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 1.2 rain different of wisdom your principles an economy drive a seminar someone’s interest contradict hair the stock market of paint a suggestion Correct the underlined collocation errors with words from the advice in B. Be careful, you might find the words in the text, as well as in the examples. 1 2 3 4 5 1.3 adhere to arouse blond come up with flatly fundamentally go on heavy lead a lick play words Exam candidates often make faults in their use of verbs like do, make, go and get. Try to use a longer range of language when you write. Exam candidates who use collocations well gather better marks. You have to know what normal collocation patterns are before you can lose them. The writer used colloquial language to form an effect. Look at these sentences from a hotel brochure. Improve the style by replacing the words in italics with the word in brackets that forms the best collocation. (Use each word only once.) 1 Our new family hotel is set in a nice location and all the rooms have nice furnishings and nice views over the surrounding countryside. (stylish / secluded / breathtaking) 2 Visitors will enjoy the good atmosphere in either of our good dining rooms, both serving good food to both residents and non-residents. (delicious / relaxing / spacious) 3 We organise tours to beautiful surrounding villages where you’ll have the opportunity to take some beautiful photographs and sample the beautiful local cuisine. (mouth-watering / picturesque / stunning) 1.4 Write F (formal), I (informal) or N (neutral) in the brackets at the end of each sentence. In each pair of sentences, there is one neutral sentence and one formal or informal sentence. Underline the collocations that are noticeably formal or informal. 1 a b 2 a b 3 a b 4 a b 1.5 Passengers must not alight from the bus while it is in motion. ( ) Passengers must not get off the bus while it is moving. ( ) Let’s grab a bite before we get down to work. ( ) Let’s have something to eat before we start work. ( ) SFTS has the right to bring the agreement to an end with three months’ notice. ( ) SFTS reserves the right to terminate the agreement with three months’ notice. ( ) She thinks her boyfriend is planning to pop the question tonight. ( ) She thinks her boyfriend is planning to ask her to marry him tonight. ( ) Correct the four collocation errors in this paragraph. The yellow-haired boy said he had joined the English class to get some new friends. He also said that he wanted to learn about collocations because it would be of big importance in helping him to do fewer mistakes when writing in English. English Collocations in Use Advanced 7 2 A Strong, fixed and weak collocations Strong collocations A strong collocation is one in which the words are very closely associated with each other. For example, the adjective mitigating almost always collocates with circumstances or factors; it rarely collocates with any other word. Although she was found guilty, the jury felt there were mitigating circumstances. [factors or circumstances that lessen the blame] Here are some other examples of strong collocations. collocation comment Inclement weather was expected. (very formal) = unpleasant weather She has auburn hair. Auburn collocates only with words connected with hair (e.g. curls, tresses, locks). I felt deliriously happy. = extremely happy Inclement collocates almost exclusively with weather. Strongly associated with happy. Not used with glad, content, sad, etc. The chairperson adjourned the meeting. B C = have a pause or rest during a meeting/trial Adjourn is very strongly associated with meeting and trial. Fixed collocations Fixed collocations are collocations so strong that they cannot be changed in any way. For example, you can say I was walking to and fro (meaning I was walking in one direction and then in the opposite direction, a repeated number of times). No other words can replace to or fro or and in this collocation. It is completely fixed. The meaning of some fixed collocations cannot be guessed from the individual words. These collocations are called idioms and are focused on in the book English Idioms in Use. Weak collocations Weak collocations are made up of words that collocate with a wide range of other words. For example, you can say you are in broad agreement with someone [generally in agreement with them]. However, broad can also be used with a number of other words – a broad avenue, a broad smile, broad shoulders, a broad accent [a strong accent], a broad hint [a strong hint] and so on. These are weak collocations, in the sense that broad collocates with a broad range of different nouns. Strong collocations and weak collocations form a continuum, with stronger ones at one end and weaker ones at the other. Most collocations lie somewhere between the two. For example, the (formal) adjective picturesque collocates with village, location and town, and so appears near the middle of the continuum. stronger weaker inclement weather picturesque village broad hint picturesque location broad accent broad smile D 8 Types of collocations in this book The collocations in this book are all frequently used in modern English. We used a corpus (a database of language) to check this. We have also selected the collocations which will be useful to you as an advanced learner. We pay most attention to those that are not predictable. A broad avenue, for example, would be predicted by any student who knows broad and avenue. However, the use of broad to mean strong as in a broad accent is more difficult to predict. English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 2.1 Complete the collocations using the words in the box. You will need to use some words more than once. adjourn 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 2.2 6 7 8 9 dictionary.cambridge.org 2.4 a in a a a broad deliriously inclement mitigating picturesque accent agreement circumstances factors hair happy smile location a meeting town a trial weather Rewrite each sentence using a collocation from 2.1. 1 2 3 4 5 2.3 auburn Melissa has quite a strong Scottish accent. Bad weather led to the cancellation of the President’s garden party. We were all very happy when we heard we’d won the award. Their new home was in a very pretty location. Because there were circumstances that made the theft less serious, the judge let him off with a warning. I think we should stop the meeting now and continue it tomorrow. She had a big smile on her face when she arrived. She has lovely reddish-brown hair. I think we’re generally in agreement as to what should be done. Think of as many collocations as you can for each word. Then look in a dictionary such as the Cambridge Online Dictionary for other suitable words. Write W (weak) or S (strong) next to each group depending on how many words you found. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 extremely an effort cancel deliver a living a meeting feature engage bright How useful do you think the collocations you have worked on in 2.2 and 2.3 are for you personally? Choose which collocations are most important to you and make sentences with them. Over to you Choose an English-language text that you have worked on recently. Underline five collocations in it. Are these collocations weak, strong or fixed? English Collocations in Use Advanced 9 3 Grammatical categories of collocation A Verb + noun verb noun example meaning of verb draw up a list Our lawyer drew up a contract for us to sign. prepare something, usually official, in writing I didn’t want to pass up the chance of seeing Hong Kong, so I agreed to go on the trip. fail to take advantage of The police officer’s vest can withstand the impact of a bullet. bear a contract pass up a chance an opportunity withstand pressure the impact B C Noun + verb noun verb example opportunity arise An opportunity arose for me to work in China, so I went and spent a year there. standards slip People feel educational standards slipped when the government cut finances. Noun + noun • Noun + noun collocations used to describe groups or sets: There’s been a spate of attacks/thefts in our area recently. [unusually large number happening in close succession] The minister had to put up with a barrage of questions/insults from the angry audience. [unusually large number, happening at the same time] • Noun + noun collocations used with uncountable nouns: By a stroke of luck I found my keys in the rubbish bin! [sudden, unexpected piece of luck] She gave me a snippet of information which is top secret. [small piece of information] D 10 Adjective + noun This is not an idle threat; I will call the police if this happens again! [simply a threat] He waited in the vain hope that the minister would meet him. [unlikely to be fulfilled hope] There is mounting concern/criticism/fury over the decision. [growing concern, etc.] The simple/plain truth is that no one was aware of the problem. E Adverb + adjective F Verb + adverb or prepositional phrase G More complex collocations The article provides an intensely personal account of the writer’s relationship with his sons. Joe’s sister was a stunningly attractive woman. The teenager tried to persuade his mother that he was innocent but he failed miserably. I don’t like to travel with my brother because he drives recklessly. [wildly, without care] As soon as the singer came on stage she burst into song. If your dog starts to foam at the mouth, you should take it to the vet immediately. Mary was looking forward to retiring and taking it easy for a while. It’s time you put the past behind you and started focusing on the future. English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 3.1 Match a word from each box to form collocations. Not all the collocations appear on the opposite page, so use a dictionary such as the Cambridge Online Dictionary to help you if necessary. 1 2 3 4 3.2 arises chatter howls pressure rises slip spreads suggests disease evidence opportunity smoke standards teeth wind withstand dictionary.cambridge.org 5 6 7 8 Complete each sentence using a collocation from 3.1 in the appropriate form. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 The scientific human beings first emerged in Africa. The was all night and it was raining, so I couldn’t sleep. a lot of . The machine has to be made of materials that can Oh, no! There’s a fire. Look at the from those buildings. It was so cold I couldn’t stop my from . Our survey shows that parents believe have at the school. You must accompany Mason on one of his business trips to Asia, if the ever . 8 An alarming new is among cattle in the south of the country. 3.3 Rewrite the underlined part of each sentence using a collocation from the opposite page. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 3.4 Answer these questions. 1 2 3 4 3.5 I don’t want to say no to the chance of meeting such a famous person. We’ll have to write a contract before you start work, as it’s a new position. You’re working too hard. You should try to relax for a short period of time. This new bullet-proof car can take the impact of a rocket-propelled grenade. Do you have any interesting little bits of information about our new boss to tell us? The minister faced a large number of questions from reporters. I had some luck last week. The police found my stolen wallet and nothing was missing. There’s been a number of violent attacks in the area recently. After her divorce Mandy was determined to forget the past and build a new life. Who do you think is the most stunningly attractive person you have ever seen? What should you do if you are in a car with someone who is driving recklessly? Do you prefer walking in the country if there is a gentle breeze or a strong wind? Would you write your most intensely personal thoughts and feelings in your diary? Choose the correct collocation. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 He said he would throw us out, but it was just a(n) vain / idle / lazy threat. They rushed the victim to hospital, in the idle / simple / vain hope of saving her life. The government is encountering mounting / climbing / rising criticism of its policies. There is raising / mounting / vain concern across the world about climate change. The horse was fuming / foaming / fainting at the mouth, so we called the vet. Suddenly, without warning, Marta busted / bustled / burst into song. The right / straight / plain truth is that I hate my job. I tried to persuade her but I’m afraid I failed desperately / miserably / wholeheartedly. English Collocations in Use Advanced 11 4 A Finding and working on collocations in texts Finding collocations You can expand your collocation vocabulary by training yourself to notice collocations whenever you read. Note the collocations in these three examples of texts from different sources – a newspaper feature, a film review and a website for London tourists. LOCAL SPOTLIGHT As a newly qualified teacher at a comprehensive school in Wiltshire, every day Joe faces the challenge of gaining the respect of a class of 15-year-olds. Joe, 26, admits it is a tough challenge but thinks he is winning the battle. Joe, who teaches English and media studies, and coaches a school football team, will qualify fully in July, pending the results1 of his lesson assessments. With this milestone passed2, and the increased financial stability it will bring, Joe will turn his thoughts to buying his first home. 1 (formal) as long as he achieves successful results major life event behind him She has a gift for languages, which brings her to the UN. She wants to make a difference. She is idealistic in that single-minded, dedicated manner associated with freedom fighters. Silvia (Nicole Kidman) remains an enigma. When Tobin Keller (Sean Penn) begins to investigate her, he is faced with a blank sheet. She is beautiful, blonde, lissom and lithe. She lives alone, has no lover, rides a Vespa throughout New York and works all day, providing simultaneous translation for delegates. She has an odd accent, which, like everything else about her, is difficult to pin down3. The Interpreter STARRING Nicole Kidman Sean Penn 3 2 hard to fix or place Covent Garden’s buskers and jugglers provide no-cost entertainment in a car-free setting, and you’ve always got the chance of being plucked from the crowd to help out with a trick. Don’t underestimate the value of London’s public transport as a source of fun, either. The #11 double-decker from Victoria, for instance, will trundle you past the Houses of Parliament, Trafalgar Square and the Strand on its way to St Paul’s Cathedral for a modest sum. The driverless Docklands Light Railway is another guaranteed source of amusement – grab a seat at the front of the train and pretend to be the driver, then take a boat back to the centre of town from Greenwich. Entertaining children in London Remember you will also hear collocations in conversations, lectures, songs and films. Try to get into the habit of recording any interesting collocations that you notice. B Recording collocations When working on collocations in a text, use your dictionary to find more relating to one or both parts of the original collocation. You can record strong collocations in collocation forks: simultaneous translation equation pending the outcome the results the response and weak ones in collocation bubbles (because there are so many more of them): practical reliable novelty sentimental place great value assess something’s 12 English Collocations in Use Advanced valuable source cheap rich of funding of income of entertainment Exercises 4.1 Complete each sentence using a collocation from A. 1 Tania has always had a so I’m not surprised she wants to study Chinese at university. 2 At high tide the sea covers the causeway and the only way to get to the island is to . 3 It’s very crowded in this café. You and I’ll get our drinks. 4 Once my exams are over I’ll planning a holiday. 5 Far more people these days manage to against cancer. 6 Most politicians say they enter politics because they want to . 7 Try not to having good friends. Ultimately, friendship is far more important than work. a successful in his driving 8 He’s got the job – test tomorrow. 9 Although they lack experience, doctors are often very enthusiastic and passionate about their work. 4.2 dictionary.cambridge.org 4.3 Complete the collocations. The first letters are given to help you. Use a dictionary such as the Cambridge Online Dictionary if necessary. to to to to to j___ a_ t__ p___ u_ t__ g__ t__ s____ a b_ i_ w___ a dictionary.cambridge.org 4.5 dictionary.cambridge.org challenge Check these expressions (a) in a good dictionary and (b) using a search engine. Which two are collocations and which two are not? 1 learn by head 4.4 chance to f _ _ _ a to p _ _ _ a a d_____ to r _ _ _ t _ t _ _ a s______ 2 learn by heart 3 lose a chance 4 miss a chance Answer these questions. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Name three milestones in your life that you have already passed. Are you already fully qualified? If so, as what? If not, when will you be? What are some typical sources of income? What is the toughest challenge you have ever faced? What qualities would be needed by someone providing simultaneous translation? What are some examples of things that have sentimental value for you? Here is one student’s plan for work on collocations. Complete the gaps, using a dictionary if necessary. Then tick the ideas you can use yourself. • (1) an effort to notice collocations in any English text I read. hold of a good dictionary to check other collocations for words that I • (2) want to learn. • Write down at least three collocations for each new word I want to (3) to memory. • Look back over old homework to see where I have (4) mistakes with collocations and (5) my best to (6) those mistakes in future. a point of using good collocations when I have to write or speak in English. • (7) because that will expose me to • Read and listen to as much English as (8) natural collocations. • Every week revise the collocations I have (9) a note of in my vocabulary ﬁle. English Collocations in Use Advanced 13 5 A Register What is register? Our use of language changes according to the situation that we are in. If your close friend hosts a party, you could say, ‘Thanks for the party. It was a blast.’ (very informal) However, if your boss was the host, you would probably say, ‘Thanks for the party. I really enjoyed it.’ (neutral) In this example, neutral and very informal are both examples of register. The register of most language is neutral (it can be used in any situation). However, register can also be formal, informal, characteristic of a certain professional field (e.g. legal, journalistic or media) or specific to official notices and forms. Our choice of register depends on what we are talking about (business, the news, the neighbours), who we are talking to (friends, strangers, figures of authority) and how we are talking to them (in a letter, in an email, in public, in private). Study the table below and notice how different words and phrases are used to describe the same situation. example register comment The police are investigating / looking into the arms deal. neutral Either version would not seem out of place in any spoken or written contexts. The cops are trying to dig out info about the arms deal. informal Phrasal verbs are often an informal alternative – although some are neutral. The police are conducting an investigation into the arms deal. formal Longer words of Latin or Greek origin often indicate more formal language. Police to probe arms deal neutral, journalistic Probe is typical of newspaper headline style. The arms deal may be subject to police investigation. formal, legal and official Subject to investigation is typical of a bureaucratic or legal style. Be careful not to think of formal language as written and informal language as spoken. There is a lot of overlap. For example, markedly formal language is most typical of official or academic writing and official legal or bureaucratic speech. Informal language is typical of conversation, personal letters and emails, messages on social media and some journalism. B C Formal versus neutral collocations formal (from official documents) neutral (spoken) Students must submit their assignments by 1 May. ‘You have to hand in your assignments by 1 May.’ Students may request an extension after consulting their tutor. ‘You can ask for an extension after you’ve talked to / had a word with your tutor.’ Informal versus neutral collocations That film was totally awesome! (mainly used by teenagers, predominantly US) [neutral equivalent: absolutely amazing/fantastic] That party was well good! (Well used to mean ‘very’/‘really’, mainly by younger UK speakers.) I haven’t a clue / the foggiest idea what you mean. [neutral equivalent: I have no idea] We can grab a snack before the meeting if you’re hungry. [neutral equivalent: have a snack] Tip Make a note in your notebook if a collocation is very formal or informal in register. 14 English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 5.1 Write F (formal), I (informal) or N (neutral) in the brackets at the end of each sentence. Underline the collocations which indicate the register. Then rewrite the formal and informal sentences to make them neutral. Example: Do not alight from the bus until it stops. (F) Do not get off the bus until it stops. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 5.2 I feel dead tired all the time. ( ) We were all bored stupid by the poetry reading. ( ) Currency exchange offices are located in the arrivals lounge. ( ) She conducted a study of single-parent family units. ( ) She did her degree in London and found work there in 2015. ( ) I just got the latest software so my computer is bang up to date. ( ) Affix a passport-size photograph to the application form. ( ) Jake asked his tutor for an extension to complete his dissertation. ( ) Match the beginning of each sentence with its ending. Then label each sentence with the appropriate register from the list below. Underline the collocations which indicate the register. Registers: informal conversation (IC) journalism/news (J) technical (T) legal (L) notices (N) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 5.3 This is breaking These are the songs that are climbing There are tons of good reasons Visitors must keep to the designated In any such case, customers shall forfeit Fuel consumption may vary I’ll give you The minister will tour Asia in a bid Joss Engold stars in the latest A microchip is a miniaturised Please restrict your use A witness may be asked to entertainment (E) a ring after dinner. according to model and road conditions. blockbuster from Star Studios. news here on Global TV Extra. electronic circuit. of the fitness machines to 20 minutes. to win support for the plan. the charts this week. for not studying law. testify for a second time. areas at all times. the right to compensation. Complete this conversation between a doctor and a patient, using the verbs in the box in the appropriate form. The language is quite informal, without technical medical terms. come clear do Doctor: What can I (1) feel get run take write for you, Mr Wilson? Patient: Well, Doctor, I’ve been (2) a temperature for the last couple of days and I’ve (3) out in a rash on my neck. Do you see? These red spots here. Doctor: Hmm. Let’s (4) a look. Patient: It’s very irritating and I have trouble (5) off to sleep at night. Then I (6) down all day and can’t concentrate on my work. Doctor: Right. I don’t think it’s anything serious. I’ll (7) prescription for some lotion which should help to (8) 5.4 dictionary.cambridge.org you out a up the rash. Look at how the doctor describes the case in his records using more technical language. Choose the correct word from the choices provided. Use a dictionary to help if necessary. A patient (1) presented / represented this morning with an (2) elevating / elevated temperature. He was also (3) exposing / exhibiting a neck rash. He further (4) complained / grumbled of an (5) inability / impossibility to concentrate. English Collocations in Use Advanced 15 6 Metaphor When we speak metaphorically, we use words in a non-literal sense. For example, when we say a writer casts light on a situation, we mean that the writer helps us understand it more clearly, in the same way that putting a light on in a dark room helps us see more clearly. A B Metaphors based on the body collocation example meaning face (up to) the facts You’re never going to run in the Olympics. It’s time you faced (up to) the facts. accepted reality shoulder the blame Although others were also responsible for the problem, Alice decided to shoulder the blame. take responsibility for something bad foot the bill Choose what you like from the menu – the company is footing the bill. paying head a team Jo heads a team working on crime prevention. leads a project group keep someone on their toes Having three sons under the age of five keeps Jana on her toes. makes her stay active and concentrated have an eye for Gina has an eye for detail, so ask her to check the report. is good at noticing go hand in hand with Unemployment goes hand in hand with social unrest. happens at the same time or as a result of Metaphors based on weight Heavy can be used to mean serious or difficult, as in heavy responsibility. A heavy burden can be either something heavy to carry or a difficult responsibility to deal with, while a heavy book can be either one that weighs a lot or one with difficult content. A weighty tome, however, would only be used to mean a book with difficult content. Similarly in weighty matters or weighty problems, weighty means difficult and serious. Light, the opposite of heavy, can also be used metaphorically to mean carefree or lacking in seriousness. So light reading is reading material that is not serious. If you do something with a light heart, you feel carefree and happy. If someone has a slim chance of doing something, there is a chance, but it is small. Fat chance (very informal) means almost no chance. C Metaphors based on movement James did a lot of partying in his final year and ran into difficulties with his course. His father was hopping mad1 when he only just managed to get his degree. However, when he left university he walked straight into a job2 in an excellent company. Some people jumped to the conclusion that this was because he’d started going out with the managing director’s daughter. His mother worried that, if their relationship hit the rocks3, he would run into trouble at work too. 1 2 16 (informal) extremely angry got a job very easily English Collocations in Use Advanced 3 ended (metaphor based on a boat being destroyed on rocks) Exercises 6.1 Rewrite the underlined part of each sentence using a metaphor from A. 1 2 3 4 5 6 6.2 The presidential visit meant no one had time to relax. Rosetta took full responsibility for the failure of the project. I don’t think Greg will ever win Rosie’s heart; it’s time he accepted that. The company had done so well that year that it agreed to pay for a staff night out. I’m glad I’m not in charge of this team. Eva is very good at finding a bargain. Answer these questions about the metaphors on the opposite page. 1 What usually goes hand in hand with inflation: an increase or a decrease in savings? 2 If a relationship hits the rocks, is it the end or the beginning of that relationship? 3 If you say that someone is hopping mad, do you mean that they are good at athletics or that they are very angry? 4 If you run into difficulties or trouble, does that mean that they happen quickly? 5 Would you be more likely to call a magazine article featuring gossip about celebrities light reading or a weighty tome? 6 If you talk about facing the facts, are the facts more likely to be pleasant or unpleasant? 6.3 Explain the difference in meaning between the sentences in each pair. 1a 2a 3a 4a 5a 6.4 Jess walked into a well-paid job in the City. Rafael is heading the project team. Dad jumped to the wrong conclusion. Jan left the room with a light heart. Fat chance I’ve got of winning! 1b 2b 3b 4b 5b Jess got a well-paid job in the City. Rafael is backing the project team. Dad came to the wrong conclusion. Jan left the room with a heavy heart. I’ve got a slim chance of winning. Choose the correct collocation. 1 Kieran’s constant whistling is riding / getting / driving me crazy. 2 Sylvia is a first-class designer as she has a good eye / nose / hand for detail. 3 You mustn’t shoulder the heavy weight / burden / task of redecorating the house all by yourself. 4 There is just a thin / slim / skinny chance that Marek might pop in today. 5 The committee has some fat / weighty / heavy matters to discuss on today’s agenda. 6 When the results came out, Marco was thrilled to see his name footing / facing / heading the list of successful candidates. 6.5 Explain what the play on words is based on in each of these headlines. 1 ATHLETE RUNS INTO TROUBLE 4 SHOEWORLD CO. TO FOOT THE BILL 2 DIET PILLS HAVE FAT CHANCE OF SUCCESS 5 NEW LAW MAKES RABBIT OWNERS HOPPING MAD 3 NEW DIRECTOR KEEPS ROYAL BALLET ON ITS TOES Tip You may find it useful to draw little pictures in your vocabulary notebook – or imagine them in your mind – to help you remember some collocations. English Collocations in Use Advanced 17 7 Intensifying and softening adverbs Adverbs are often used before adjectives and verbs either to strengthen their meaning (intensifying adverbs) or to weaken it (softening adverbs). Her comments were deeply offensive. (intensifier – very/extremely) Her comments were slightly offensive. (softener – a little bit) A Intensifying adverbs Notice how intensifying adverbs are used to mean ‘extremely’ or ‘completely’ in the sentences below. The expressions marked with * are very informal. Olivia really enjoys doing housework. You should see her flat – it’s always spotlessly clean. It was downright rude of Antonio to tell Paula that she looked older than her own mother. I hope he feels thoroughly ashamed. It’s blatantly obvious that Olga is only interested in Richard because he’s so wealthy. I wonder what she’ll do when she finds out he’s wildly exaggerated how rich he really is! I don’t know what I was worrying about! The exam turned out to be dead easy*! This celebrity website is good fun but most of the information is wildly inaccurate. B Softening adverbs Note the softening adverbs used in these sentences from newspapers. The spokesperson said the new insurance scheme was only slightly different from the old one. [weak collocation; slightly can be used with a wide range of adjectives] The chief executive said he was mildly surprised by the public interest in the firm’s plans. [mildly also collocates with amusing/ed, irritating/ed, offensive] Alfredo Scaluzzi’s new film is loosely based on a nineteenth-century novel. [loosely also collocates with centred, structured, related, connected] Ms Giroa said she regarded reports that she was about to seek a divorce as faintly ridiculous. [fairly formal; faintly also collocates with amused, surprised, patronising, absurd] C Alternatives to very There are a variety of words that you can use as alternatives to very which collocate with most adjectives, for example: really, extremely, terribly, incredibly and awfully. Other adverbs collocate with certain adjectives and verbs but not with others. alternatives to very ✓ NOT highly unlikely, educated, recommended appreciate, influence, interesting strongly influence appreciate greatly appreciate, influence utterly absurd, ridiculous completely/totally/entirely different, dependent, separate thoroughly enjoy sorry, busy, glad, lonely Common mistakes Absolutely collocates only with adjectives which have strong meanings, e.g. absolutely (NOT very) delighted, very (NOT absolutely) happy. 18 English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 7.1 Match a word from each box to form collocations. blatantly downright spotlessly thoroughly wildly 7.2 Complete each sentence using a collocation from 7.1. 1 2 3 4 5 7.3 ashamed clean inaccurate obvious rude to me! I’m amazed you didn’t realise she was lying! It was It was of him not to say hello to the secretary. I’ve been hoovering and dusting all day, so now my flat is . Most of the facts were wrong in that news report. It was . You should be of yourself. Your behaviour was appalling! Rewrite the underlined part of each sentence using a collocation from the opposite page. 1 The American writer Mark Twain is famous for commenting that reports of his death had been over-exaggerated. 2 This restaurant is recommended by many different people. 3 The exam was extremely easy; everyone got high marks. (make this informal) 4 The musical West Side Story is kind of based on the plot of Shakespeare’s play Romeo and Juliet. (make this less informal) 5 The idea of the boss singing Happy Birthday to me struck me as a little bit ridiculous. 6 The success of the Wimbledon tennis tournament is 100% dependent on the weather. (give two answers) 7 I really enjoyed the days I spent at your lovely house in the country. 8 I was just a little surprised by her decision to quit her job so soon. 9 I was really delighted when they told me I’d got the job. 10 The new model of this camera is a little bit different from the old one. 7.4 Add intensifying adverbs from the opposite page to these sentences to make the words in bold stronger. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5 I appreciate the fact that you have given me so much of your time. Sometimes Tony says ridiculous things. The crossword in today’s newspaper is difficult. I can’t even start it! It’s sweet of you to offer to help. I found his remarks offensive; he should apologise. She leads a lonely life in a tiny house on a remote island. We should try to keep the two groups separate from each other. She is an educated person. I’ve been busy all week. That meal was expensive! I’m not eating there again. Are the following adverb collocations correct or not? If they are incorrect, correct them using collocations from C opposite. 1 2 3 4 I thoroughly enjoyed the film. Your help would be strongly appreciated. The song is highly influenced by Brazilian folk rhythms. I find the situation utterly absurd. Tip Look out for more collocations with these words as you listen and read, and record them in collocation bubbles indicating what they do and do not collocate with. English Collocations in Use Advanced 19 8 A Make and verbs that mean make Common errors with make The Cambridge Learner Corpus shows that some of the most frequent collocation errors made by candidates in advanced English exams relate to the use of make. Here are some typical errors and their corrections. I would like to do/give some suggestions – make some suggestions I think that I could have/give a contribution to the project – make a contribution I expect you to give a formal apology – make a formal apology There is still some way to go and lots of improvements to do – improvements to make Thank you very much for doing these arrangements – making these arrangements Sometimes candidates use make where another verb is required. For example: We’re going to make a party on Saturday – have a party Lana made some interesting research into her family roots – did … research 20 B Other expressions with make C Other verbs that mean make It’s a good idea to make a habit of switching off the lights when you leave a room. If you always say exactly what you think, you’ll make a lot of enemies. The team made several attempts to climb the mountain before they finally succeeded. I hope that they’ll make a success of their new restaurant business. I have to go to a party for a colleague after work but I will try and make an early escape. Our research team has made an important discovery about how whales communicate. When doing your accounts, try to ensure you make all the calculations correctly. If we move the sofa closer to the window, it’ll make room for the piano. I first made his acquaintance when he moved in next door. [formal: got to know him] The house we looked at is just what we want and we’ve decided to make an offer on it. As no one else has any ideas, I’d like to make a proposal. [make a formal suggestion] We must make a stand against the casino they propose to build here. [protest about] collocation example comment create a good/bad impression Wear your grey suit to the interview if you want to create a good impression. slightly more formal than make an impression create a (+ adj.) atmosphere The lanterns in the garden create a romantic atmosphere. more formal than make for a romantic atmosphere stage a protest The students staged a protest against rising tuition fees. = make a formal protest lodge a complaint Several people have lodged a complaint about the receptionist’s rudeness. = make a formal complaint rustle up a meal It took Sam ten minutes to rustle up a meal. (informal) = make a meal very quickly run up curtains This weekend I’m going to run up some curtains for my new room. = make quickly using a sewing machine turn a profit This month our company should turn a profit for the first time. slightly more informal than make a profit coin a phrase I wonder who coined the term ‘blogging’. = invent / make up a new phrase English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 8.1 Are these sentences correct or incorrect? If they are incorrect, correct them. 1 2 3 4 Have you any suggestions to make about how to celebrate the school’s anniversary? We are planning to have a party next Saturday. The company director gave a formal apology for his earlier comments. The manager had to make a number of changes to office procedures in order to do all the improvements he had planned for the company. 5 My sister did all the arrangements for the party. 8.2 Complete each sentence using a word from the box. acquaintance attempt calculations discovery enemies habit offer room stand success 1 Try to make a of noticing good collocations in any text you read. 2 A railway official asked us to move our luggage to make for the boy’s bike. by being so autocratic. 3 The new CEO has made a lot of 4 If Pauline makes a of this project, she’ll probably get promoted. 5 The old gentleman said he was delighted to make my . 6 Do you think you’ll make an on the flat you viewed yesterday? 7 Every young scientist dreams of making a that will change the world. 8 Rachel made no to contact me when she was over here last year. 9 We tried to make a against the new housing development but to no avail: the contractors started work this morning. 10 The that you made contained a few inaccuracies. 8.3 Replace make in each sentence with an alternative word. Then say whether you have made the sentence more or less formal. 1 2 3 4 5 6 8.4 The Green Party plans to make a major protest against the government’s new farming policy. Tessa helped me to make some lovely cushion covers for my new flat. I regret to inform you that several clients have made complaints about your conduct. You won’t make a good first impression if you arrive late for your interview. It won’t take me long to make a meal for the children. Do you expect your business to make a profit this year? Rewrite each sentence using the word in brackets. 1 At the meeting the chairman proposed something rather interesting. (proposal) 2 I hope we can leave soon as I’m terribly tired. (escape) 3 I’m reading a fascinating book about the invention of new words and phrases to express new social and technical needs. (coined) 4 We changed the layout of the hall to make it more relaxed for the yoga class. (atmosphere) 5 I tried to phone the company several times at the weekend. (attempts) 6 Kim contributed very positively to the discussion. (contribution) 7 The service was poor but I wouldn’t go so far as to formally complain. (lodge) 8 I first got talking to Roger on a train. (acquaintance) Over to you Make a point of looking back through any pieces of your writing that a teacher has corrected. Have you ever made any mistakes involving collocations with make? If so, make an effort to use those expressions correctly in your next assignment. English Collocations in Use Advanced 21 9 A B 22 Communicating Collocations with say, speak, talk and tell I wouldn’t say no to a nice cup of tea. [informal: I’d really like] Needless to say / It goes without saying that the workers voted in favour of the wage increase. Jana didn’t say a word when I told her I was leaving. Generally speaking, people are aware of the environmental consequences of their actions. Strictly speaking, a tomato is a fruit and not a vegetable because it contains seeds. She always speaks very highly of you. [says good things about you] Charlie, stop mumbling and speak properly. I can’t understand a word you’re saying. [generally used by parents or teachers to children, not between adults] Now we’ve got to know each other, I think it’s time we talked business. At first, Andrew appears to be talking nonsense but after a while you realise he’s actually talking a lot of sense. I’ll tell you a secret but please don’t tell anyone else. The old woman looked at Glen’s palm and began to tell his fortune. [predict his future life] Collocations meaning communicate example comment I asked why she didn’t trust him but she wouldn’t give me a reason. NOT say a reason The charity states its aim as being to help underprivileged children. (formal) also state your purpose/goal The staff on reception required each visitor to state their business before issuing them with an entry permit. (formal) = say what their intentions are In her lecture Lucia gave an account of her trip to the Andes. used about both speech and writing The speech got the message about the policy changes across. (informal) = conveyed the idea I declare Hiroshi Yamamoto the winner of the gold medal. (formal) statement made at the time of the win He was pronounced dead at 1.10. (formal) used when making an official statement of death The old man tried to impart his knowledge to his sons. (formal) = transfer knowledge; also impart wisdom That journalist gets amazing stories but he won’t divulge his sources. (formal) = make something secret known; also divulge a secret The internet is a powerful means of disseminating information. (formal) = spreading information to a lot of people We notified the police of the burglary. (formal) = officially informed Although found guilty, Robson continued to protest his innocence. (formal) = insist he was not guilty He professed ignorance of the dent to the car but I think he was lying. (formal) = claimed – perhaps insincerely – that he did not know Did you break the news to her that her mother is in prison? used for news that is very upsetting English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 9.1 Complete each sentence with the appropriate form of say, speak, talk or tell. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 9.2 Rewrite the underlined part of each sentence to make it more formal. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9.3 dictionary.cambridge.org 9.5 The victim was asked why he had not told the police sooner about the mugging. The older generation has always attempted to pass its wisdom on to young people. Stockman has always insisted that he is innocent. Robert claimed that he knew nothing of the damage to the car. The reporter had no option but to explain where she had got her information from. The doctors said he was dead when they arrived at the scene of the accident. The judges said that Magda Karlson had won the competition. The charity does a great deal to inform people about its activities. Are these sentences correct or incorrect? If they are incorrect, correct them. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9.4 Strictly , you shouldn’t be here. Joel me a secret and made me promise not to pass it on to anyone else. It goes without that we’ll invite you to our wedding. I spend most days with my three-year-old son, so forgive me if I start nonsense. The teachers always very highly of my son’s abilities. I had my fortune at the fair yesterday. It’s so hot. I wouldn’t no to an ice cream, would you? Shall we have lunch first and then sit down to business? I think that, generally , it’s better to use public transport than drive yourself. Do you think I managed to give the message across in my speech? Needless to say, he didn’t tell a word to his parents about what had happened. You can’t chew gum and say properly at the same time. He refused to say his reasons for turning down our invitation. She was devastated when we dropped the news to her. In your report we would like you to give a detailed account of what happened. I really like this documentary maker; she tells a lot of sense. At the beginning of your dissertation you must say your goals clearly. Use a dictionary to find nouns to complete these phrases based on collocations in B. 1 2 a company’s 3 4 5 of innocence in the face of evidence to the contrary of aims of information among the population of a crime to the police of the winner of a competition Use a dictionary to complete these collocation forks. 1 someone a winner 2 knowledge 3 sources dictionary.cambridge.org wisdom declare divulge impart English Collocations in Use Advanced 23 10 A Collocations with phrasal verbs News items The Justice Minister said he would abide by the decision1 of the High Court to free the prisoner. The police, acting on a tip-off 3, arrested the thieves as they left the building. The new regional governor will take up office2 on 1 March, following his party’s recent election victory. The Education Commission has been asked by the government to come up with an alternative to the present schools examination system. Hollywood star Glenda Nixon has filed for divorce4. She and her husband Kevin Lomax have lived apart for the last six months. 1 2 B (formal) accept the decision (formal) start work in an official position The police intend to come down heavily on5 anyone causing trouble at tomorrow’s football final. 3 a secret warning made an official request for a divorce 5 punish very severely 4 Everyday conversation Note how B uses a collocation with a phrasal verb to repeat A’s ideas. A: It was great just sitting in the sunshine and enjoying the feel of the place, wasn’t it? B: Yes, it was nice to just sit there soaking up the atmosphere. A: I think we should both arrange our work schedules so we don’t have to work in May. B: Yes, I’ll try to free up some time so we can go away together. A: I’m finding it hard to find time to practise the French I learnt at school. B: Yes, I have a similar problem keeping up my Spanish. A: Well, all that gardening has made me hungry. B: Yes, it certainly helps to work up an appetite. A: It’d suit my arrangements if we could meet up at lunchtime. B: Yes, that would fit in perfectly with my plans too. A: The hotel wasn’t as good as I thought it would be. B: No, it didn’t live up to my expectations either. C Other phrasal verbs with strong collocations burst into laughter/tears [suddenly start to laugh/cry] When she saw the damage the floods had done to her house, she burst into tears. dip into savings/funds [spend part of some money which was being saved] The club had to dip into their emergency funds to pay for the repairs to the roof. jot down an address / a phone number / a room number [write down quickly] Can I jot down your email address? see off an intruder/opponent [get rid of, defeat] He’s a tough guy. He saw off several intruders who were trying to break into his house. adhere to principles / beliefs / ideals / a philosophy [formal: continue to maintain a belief] It’s difficult to adhere to one’s beliefs when one is being constantly attacked. Tip It is often difficult to remember the meanings of phrasal verbs. When a phrasal verb has a set of collocations as in the examples in C, write them down together. This is a good way of remembering their meaning. 24 English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 10.1 Complete the collocations using prepositions from the box. by down for in with to up up to up with 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 10.2 file come take adhere live abide jot fit divorce an alternative office a philosophy expectations a decision someone’s address plans Complete each sentence using a collocation from 10.1 in the appropriate form. my 1 I’d been looking forward to the course but unfortunately it expectations. a good alternative to the petrol- or diesel-fuelled car yet? 2 Has anyone 3 I should your address in case I forget it. 4 The new president of our club is due to office next week. 5 We have to the decision of the committee; we have no choice. 6 Most members of the group a common philosophy. 7 I don’t have any special arrangements, so can easily your plans. 8 Melissa Bragg has divorce in a New York court. 10.3 Answer these questions using collocations from the opposite page. 1 2 3 4 10.4 What can you do with savings or funds in an emergency? What can you do with principles or ideals? What can you try to do with a language if you don’t want to lose it? What can guard dogs help you to do if you have intruders? Correct the collocation errors in these sentences. 1 Everyone broke into laughter when she told the story. 2 We had a run along the beach to work in an appetite before lunch. 3 The police have said they intend to go down heavily on anyone carrying an offensive weapon at the match. 4 Do you think you could free out some time to have a quick meeting this afternoon? 5 The police acted on a rip-off and managed to avert a possible disaster. 6 I hope the party will live on to your expectations. 7 We sat on our hotel balcony, soaking through the atmosphere of the carnival. 8 Tanya quickly saw out her opponent in the semi-final and now goes on to the final. 10.5 Answer these questions. Write full sentences using the word in brackets in a collocation from the opposite page. 1 2 3 4 What do you plan to do in future to make sure you don’t lose your English? (keep) What film or gig or sports event have you been to that wasn’t as good as you expected? (live) What sort of thing might tempt you to use some of your savings? (dip) Your best friend is getting married 100 miles away tomorrow and all the trains have been cancelled. What would you try to do? (come) 5 At short notice some friends have invited you to stay for the weekend. They’ve already made some plans for the weekend. What would you do your best to do? (fit) 6 How easy do you find it always to act according to your principles? (adhere) English Collocations in Use Advanced 25 11 Working life A Emily In my mid-twenties I joined the staff of a language school. The pay wasn’t brilliant but I could make a living1 and there were many aspects of the job that I enjoyed. The other members of staff were nice and I enjoyed teaching the students. A few years later, after returning from maternity leave, I decided to go part-time. Luckily I was able to do a job-share2 with another woman who had a small child. Then the school began to go through a difficult period and had to lay off staff3. I decided to go freelance4. I had managed to build up a network of contacts and this gave me a good start. I soon had a substantial volume of work – private students and marking exams – and was able to earn a good living. 1 earn enough to live (can also be used just to refer to one’s job and how one earns one’s money: She makes a living as a hairdresser) 2 situation where two people share equal parts of the same job 3 ismiss staff because there is no work for them d to do 4 work for several different organisations rather than working full-time for one organisation Common mistakes People usually do work, NOT make work. If we talk about people making work, it means that they create work for other people to do, e.g. A baby makes a lot of work for its parents – but it’s worth it. B Ben 1 2 C After graduating, I practised medicine1 for a number of years in London. I managed to carve a niche for myself2 as a specialist in dermatology. Then I realised I needed some fresh challenges and so I did a job swap for a year with my opposite number3 in a clinic in Vancouver. When I returned, I went back to my old job and also took up the post4 of editor of a leading medical journal. I held that position for a number of years. I’m now hoping to go abroad again and so am letting everyone know that I am open to offers. worked as a doctor make a special position for myself Julia 3 4 someone doing the same job in a different location started work After graduating in economics, I did the usual thing of putting together my CV1 and applying for jobs. I got a very tempting offer from an investment bank and accepted it. I was put on a fast-track scheme2 and was moving up the ladder3 fast. However, one day I had a change of heart4. I realised I’d stopped enjoying the excitement. I felt I needed to get my priorities right5. I decided that other aspects of my life should take priority over6 my work. I handed in my resignation and moved to the country. 1 CV = curriculum vitae, a written description of your education, qualifications, skills and career 2 system for rapid training and promotion of talented staff 3 being promoted my attitude or mood changed 5 give importance to the right aspects of life 6 be more important to me than 4 Common mistakes We say someone is under a lot of / considerable pressure, NOT under high pressure. 26 English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 11.1 Match the beginning of each sentence with its ending. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11.2 My husband and I do Circulate the report to all members Jonas has been happier since he went I hope it won’t be necessary to lay It’s not easy to make Meeting people is the best aspect Marian was the last person to join Anna will be going on maternity Try to build up a good network We’ve had a ridiculous volume of contacts. the staff in our company. of work this month. of staff. part-time. a job-share. off many of our staff. of the job. a living as an actor. leave next month. Complete the conversation using words from the opposite page. Megan: Did you know my son’s in Australia at the moment? He’s doing a job swap with his opposite (1) , the person who (2) a similar position to his in the company’s Sydney office. José: Wow, that’s good! But I thought he wanted to go to the States this year? Megan: Well, yes. He did have a very tempting (3) he was about to accept, but then he had a (4) from a company in New York and of heart. José: So, have you met the exchange person from Sydney? Megan: Yes, he’s been to dinner a couple of times. He’d like to settle here in fact and has asked us to tell everyone he’s (5) to offers from any companies that might be interested. Maybe your firm might be interested? José: Perhaps. We could do with someone with good Australian contacts. But we could really do with someone who could (6) a post before the end of the year. Megan: That could work out perhaps. He certainly seems very nice. And he’d be motivated to do well for you because he’s so keen to stay here. José: And do you think your son will stay in Australia? Megan: I hope not. I’ve told him to get his priorities (7) . Being near his mum should (8) priority over Australian beaches and sunshine! 11.3 Rewrite each sentence using the word in brackets. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 11.4 The recession meant that the company had to make some workers redundant. (lay) Your family should really be more important to you than your work. (priority) Nita soon gained several promotions at work. (ladder) Harry hates his new boss so much that I think he’ll soon leave. (resignation) Vic earns good money as a freelance journalist. (living) I need to write down all my qualifications and experience before I apply for jobs. (cv) My father always wanted to work as a doctor in a rural community. (practise) Correct the seven collocation errors in this paragraph. George makes a life as a sports reporter on a local newspaper but he is under high pressure at work at the moment. He’s had far too much work to make recently. He’s been put on a fast-train scheme for promotion and they’re really pushing him. It’s so hard that he’s thinking of handing over his resignation and going freelancing. It wouldn’t be easy but I’m sure he’d soon work a niche for himself as a sports journalist. English Collocations in Use Advanced 27 12 A New employment Discussing job applicants Guy: So which of these applicants do you think we should interview? They all seem to fit the job description quite well to me. It’s quite a daunting task to narrow the list down to just one person. Lisa: I agree. So, lets start by taking up references for these ten people. Guy: OK. So why did you pick these ten out of the fifty who applied? Lisa: Well, these ten all seem to be people who realise the importance of working as a team. They’ve all shown that they are capable of mastering new skills. And they’re all clearly comfortable with taking on responsibility. Guy: Did you automatically eliminate the two who’d previously taken industrial action1? Lisa: One of them – I’d also heard rumours about his involvement in a professional misconduct case. He was certainly relieved of his duties2 at ARG under mysterious circumstances. But the other was standing up for a woman who’d been wrongfully dismissed3, even though he knew he might lose his own job. So he sounded good to me. Guy: Fair enough. He must have strength of character to risk losing his own livelihood. Lisa: That’s right. So could we pencil in a meeting for considering the references? And then I’d better leave you and go and clear my desk4 before I go home. Guy: Yes, sure. How about Friday at 10? 1 4 gone on strike deal with all the papers on one’s desk (also used (formal) dismissed when someone is clearing their desk because they 3 (formal, legal) unfairly dismissed are leaving their job) 2 Common mistakes If workers refuse to work, they go on strike or stage a strike, NOT make a strike. B Conversation about a new job Alexa: I hear your brother’s landed a fantastic new job1. David: Actually it’s not as good as he hoped. He’s got a terribly heavy workload and that means working some very unsocial hours. He also complains about having to do lots of menial tasks around the office, running errands for his boss. Alexa: But he’s paid well? David: Not really. He just about gets a living wage2. And all the overtime is unpaid. Alexa: He’ll just have to throw a sickie3 from time to time. David: Yes, I suggested he did that too, but he says he’s afraid of getting the sack4 if he does. He feels there might be some prospects for him there eventually, even if he is just being used as sweated labour5 at the moment. Alexa: Well, with any luck he’ll eventually find that he can realise his potential6 there. David: I hope so. But they have a very high turnover of staff and it won’t be easy for him to stay the course7 . Alexa: No, but he’s very determined, isn’t he? So let’s hope it all works out. 1 (informal) got a new (and usually a good) job enough money to live on 3 (informal) take a day off work pretending to be sick 4 (informal) being dismissed 2 28 English Collocations in Use Advanced 5 workers who are paid very little and work in very bad conditions 6 achieve all that he is capable of 7 remain there until he is successful Exercises 12.1 Find a collocation in A that matches each definition. 1 2 3 4 5 12.2 to make a provisional date for a meeting 6 an alarmingly difficult task 7 to become skilled at doing new things 8 to request statements from referees to have the skills required for a job unfairly sacked to be deprived of your source of income behaviour unacceptable for someone in a particular job Complete this paragraph using words from the box in the appropriate form. be fit land run sweat take a job on her local newspaper as soon as Charlotte was surprised but happy to (1) she left university. She was surprised because she didn’t feel that she (2) the job description, but she was happy because she had always dreamt of working as a journalist. So she didn’t really mind when she found that she was spending much of her time (3) errands for the editor. Her brother said she was just being used as (4) labour but she felt confident that there (5) good prospects for her there. She was sure she would soon have the chance to (6) on more responsibility. 12.3 Complete each conversation using a collocation from the opposite page to make B agree with what A says. 1 A: B: 2 A: B: 3 A: B: 4 A: B: 5 A: B: 6 A: B: 12.4 I think that Adam will leave his new job before the year is out. either. Yes, I agree. I don’t think he’ll Had you heard that they may fire some members of staff? Yes, I did hear a rumour that some people might Inflation is so high that I don’t seem to earn enough to live on any more. No. I don’t feel I earn myself. Has the HR manager been removed from his job? Yes, he was yesterday. I hope the workers don’t decide to go on strike. Yes, it would be very unfortunate if they decide to It’s going to be hard to decide which of the job applicants to shortlist. Yes, I don’t know how we are going to . . . Answer these questions about your own work or ask someone else these questions and write down the answers. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 What kind of menial tasks does your job involve? Do you think this job will allow you to realise your potential? Do you ever have to work unsocial hours? If so, why? If not, why not? Does there tend to be a high turnover of staff at your workplace? If you do overtime, is it paid or unpaid? Have you ever thrown a sickie? If so, why? If not, why not? Have you ever taken or would you ever consider taking industrial action? In your job is it necessary to work as a team? Do you have a heavy workload? Over to you It will probably be particularly useful for you to learn work collocations that relate to your own professional life. Look on the internet for information in English about the job that you do or are interested in doing in the future. Make a note of any interesting collocations that you come across. English Collocations in Use Advanced 29 13 A Thoughts and ideas Talking about thoughts I honestly think we can win the match tonight. [NOT I strongly think] I’m not sure if I want to invest in your business or not, but I’ll give it some thought. Bear in mind that there are often delays to flights during bad weather. [remember] It’s common knowledge that Hannah is looking for a new job. [everyone knows] My teenage son hasn’t yet grasped the importance of revising for exams. [understood how important something is] I take the view that we are all responsible for our own actions. [believe] It’s a foregone conclusion that Jaime will win the race. [absolutely certain] I’m not quite sure what I’m going to do but I’ve got a rough idea. [general idea] I don’t subscribe to the theory that nature and nurture are of equal significance but it is now a widespread belief. [hold the opinion]; [generally held view] Opinions are divided as to whether mothers of young children should go out to work or not, but it is my firm conviction that different things suit different families. [people hold different views]; [I am totally convinced] Common mistakes We say I am becoming aware of the problem, NOT I am getting aware. B C Judging collocation example meaning judge someone harshly Don’t judge him too harshly. He really couldn’t have done things differently. be very critical of someone poor judgement Deciding to set up a business now shows poor judgement of the economic situation. pass judgement on Di’s quick to pass judgement on other people but she’s far from perfect herself. criticise against your better judgement I finally agreed to go out with him, against my better judgement. despite the knowledge that something is a bad idea a lack of judgement Her approach to the recent discipline problems in school showed a lack of judgement. an inability to judge a situation wisely an error of judgement Promoting Alec was a serious error of judgement. bad decision Metaphors of thinking We can talk about thinking laterally1. We can say someone has a fertile imagination2. We can wrestle with a problem3 and we can have a nagging doubt4. We can also talk about something fuelling speculation5, and sometimes people jump to conclusions6. 1 pproaching a problem in an imaginative and a original way rather than using a traditional approach 2 one that produces lots of original and interesting ideas 3 struggle to find a solution 30 English Collocations in Use Advanced 4 n unpleasant feeling of doubt that will not go away a encouraging people to consider that something may be true 6 guess the facts about a situation without having enough information 5 Exercises 13.1 Look at A. Correct the collocation errors in these sentences. Opinions are separated on the issue of single-sex schools and there are sound arguments on both sides of the case. 1 I believe that the government will win another term in office but my girlfriend takes a different opinion. 2 13.2 3 I strongly think that you’d be making a serious mistake if you took that job. 4 I don’t believe it’s a foregone fact that the larger company will win the contract. 5 People are gradually getting aware of the problem of climate change. 6 You should bear in thought that your visitors will be tired after their long ﬂight. 7 I’ve got a raw idea of what I want to say in my essay but I haven’t planned it properly yet. 8 Increasing numbers of people today subscribe for the theory that small is beautiful. Complete the paragraph using words from the box. error firm grasped laterally pass poor Recent research shows that people who spend time meditating each day improve their mental abilities. It seems that meditation particularly enhances our ability to think in creative, unusual ways, in other words, to think ‘outside the box’ or think (1) . It may, then, have been an unfortunate (2) of judgement on the part of the management at BNM & Co. to put a stop to the yoga classes that staff had organised for their lunch breaks. ‘It would seem that our managers have not yet (3) the importance of these classes,’ explained yoga instructor Zandra, ‘but it is not my place to (4) judgement on them. Their judgement may be (5) at the moment but it is my (6) conviction that as people come to understand yoga better, they will see how it could benefit the company as well as individual members of staff.’ 13.3 Rewrite each sentence using the word in brackets. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 13.4 It’s unwise to draw conclusions too quickly about people’s motives. (jump) Everyone knows that Ellie has been taking money from the till. (common) I agreed to help him though I knew it was wrong. (against) I’m afraid your decisions show you are unable to judge situations well. (lack) We have to decide when to have the party. Can you think about it? (thought) I think you are being too critical of him. Remember he’s only 18. (harshly) Surprisingly, a large number of people believe left-handed people are more intelligent. (widespread) Use a dictionary such as The Cambridge Online Dictionary to find frequent collocations with these words. Your collocations can use the words literally or metaphorically. 1 a fertile dictionary.cambridge.org 2 to fuel 3 to wrestle with 4 a nagging English Collocations in Use Advanced 31 14 A Business reports Business news Charles Park and Sons have announced record profits for last year despite a slight decline in demand for one of their key products, caused by increasingly fierce competition1 in the sector. They say they are already well on the way to meeting their targets for the first quarter. Their new models will go into production2 in the spring and this is expected to boost3 their sales and profits even more. The government today announced its intentions to stimulate growth in the Southwest by allocating a large part of its development budget to industrial projects in the area. Roger Middle, who chaired the committee working on this scheme, said that local people welcomed the decision, which should generate more business for local firms. They appreciate that their area has many unique selling points for businesses and their employees, and feel that development will pay dividends4 for everyone living and working in the area. Clothing firm G & L has announced plans to build a new factory in the Midlands. Their spokesperson, Mark Mulloy, said yesterday that the proposal made sound business sense. ‘It will be easier for us to maintain quality and promote the interests of our shareholders at the same time as satisfying the demands of our target market,’ he said. SIB Distribution held an emergency meeting last night to discuss the crisis caused by yesterday’s rise in fuel prices. Their MD said, ‘This hike in prices5 will seriously affect the bottom line6. It’s a considerable challenge for us as we already operate on narrow proﬁt margins. However, we have set ourselves clear objectives and are confident we will still be able to balance the books7. We have no intention of calling in the receivers8 yet!’ 1 5 2 6 NOT high competition start being made 3 increase 4 bring advantages B (journalistic) rise in prices affect the net income 7 make sure the amount spent is not more than the amount earned 8 going bankrupt Describing trends An important part of many business reports is the description of trends. The Cambridge Learner Corpus shows that there are a number of collocation errors which are frequently made when candidates write about business in advanced English exams. sales profits the market exports/imports showed a rise saw a fall experienced a decline NOT had a growth Common mistakes We say a slight decrease/increase, NOT a little decrease/increase, and a substantial decrease/ increase, NOT a strong decrease/increase. When comparing two things in terms of quantity, we say, for example, Exports were five times greater than imports, NOT Exports were five times larger than imports. 32 English Collocations in Use Advanced Exercises 14.1 Are these sentences true or false? 1 A business executive will feel worried if the company experiences a decline in demand for its products. 2 A business CEO is pleased if the company does not meet its quarterly sales targets. 3 A hike in the price of raw materials is likely to present a difficult challenge for a business that uses those materials. 4 Marketing and sales staff will promote their products’ unique selling points. 5 Business managers are likely to be happy about calling in the receivers. 6 A company is likely to feel more secure if it has narrow profit margins. 14.2 Complete each sentence using a word from the opposite page. 1 It was a sad day for the company when it finally had to call in the 2 I’m sure you’ll agree that our new mobile phone has a number of unique selling . 3 We use a professional accountant to help us balance our . 4 The bank agreed that our plans make sound business . 5 We must ensure that the research project does not negatively affect the bottom . 6 We look forward to next spring, when our exciting new line will go into 7 All your hard work will eventually pay . 8 We are confident that our new business strategy will help boost both sales and . 14.3 . . Correct the collocation errors in these sentences. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 The company is pleased to report a strong increase in profits over the last quarter. The new health and safety committee is to be tabled by a retired doctor. There is increasingly high competition between airline companies. The company’s exports to Japan had considerable growth over the last decade. The sales figures for March show a little decrease on those for February. Our sales in the domestic market are certain to have a rise next year. Last year sales were three times larger in Europe than in Australia. We feel that this proposal does considerable business sense. Although we need to reduce our costs, it’s important we attain the quality that our reputation is built on. 10 Business leaders hope new government policies will stimulus growth. 14.4 Answer these questions about the collocations in this unit. 1 2 3 4 5 6 When might the Managing Director of a company call an emergency meeting? What kind of age group is a sports car company likely to have as its target market? Why would shareholders be pleased if their company announced record profits? In what situations other than business do people set themselves objectives? Name three things that a business would have to allocate part of its budget to. How might a company try to stimulate growth in demand for its products? Over to you On the website www.companieshouse.gov.uk you can find reports on several million companies. Look up a company that interests you and make a note of any interesting collocations that you find. English Collocations in Use Advanced 33 15 A Marketing What is marketing? The Marketing Expert Home | Deﬁnition | Key terms | Case studies Marketing is the process of studying and defining the needs of target customers as well as promoting products to fulfil those needs. For example, if your company produces ice cream, you need to learn as much as you can about consumer demands and preferences. (What flavours do they like? What size pack do they prefer?) How do companies find out about their customers? Companies conduct / carry out market research. They may do this through questionnaires, surveys or focus groups1. What do companies need to know about their customers? What do companies do with this information? They want to find out about consumer behaviour and buying habits – for example, where do they shop and what do they buy? They may also want to find out the age and income bracket2 of their customers. This helps them to create a demographic profile3 of a typical customer. Building up a picture of the customer is all part of customer relationship management4 (CRM). Companies will use the information to make decisions about product development and design. It also helps them to look at market segmentation5 so that they can target certain areas of the market or certain types of consumers. It also helps companies to know what their own market share is. ¹ a group of potential customers who give their opinions about a product, brand, packaging etc. ² a section of the population classified according to their level of income Tip ³ information such as the age, gender and occupation of a group of people ⁴ the strategies that companies use to analyse and manage their contact with customers ⁵ the way the market is divided into different consumer groups and the differences between them A customer is a person who buys a product and a consumer is someone who uses a product – often it can be the same person, but not always. B Getting the message across What makes a successful marketing campaign? What’s the best way to reach the target audience? Justine Blake, Head of Marketing for a major fashion retailer, explains more: ‘We use a number of different ways to communicate with our customers. There are the more traditional channels like TV and billboard advertising, as well as product placement1. But these days we’re also doing much more guerrilla marketing2. For example, in one recent campaign we installed special “mirrors” on bus shelters, that showed people what they would look like wearing some of our latest designs. ‘We have our own in-house marketing team but we also use an advertising agency which specialises in that type of work. Our brand identity3 is very important and one of our aims is to build brand awareness4. We want customers to feel confident about the quality of our clothing and so increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. ‘Our latest online campaign featured a video about a young girl and her grandmother going clothes shopping together. It was a lovely story about having positive role models. It went viral5 and was shared on social media all over the world! Of course, the more free airtime6 or press coverage7 we can get, the better. In the fashion world, celebrity endorsement8 can also have a huge impact. ‘Ultimately, we want to engage with our customers9 and bring them the best products we can.’ ¹ a company pays for their product to be featured in a film ² a company promotes their products in an unconventional way, often on a low budget ³ how a business wants to be seen by its customers ⁴ increase knowledge of a brand among potential customers 34 English Collocations in Use Advanced ⁵ become very popular through social media ⁶ time featured on e.g. TV, without payment ⁷ reporting in the press ⁸ a famous person is paid to promote a product ⁹ communicate with customers Exercises 15.1 Match a word from each box to form collocations. marketing free product income consumer brand 15.2 placement behaviour identity campaign airtime bracket Complete each sentence using a collocation from 15.1. in it. All the top-brand 1 I enjoyed the film, but there was a lot of cars, phones, watches and so on. It was a bit distracting. 2 We want to build a really strong as a trustworthy company. 3 One of the aims of our research was to identify certain patterns of : specifically where they bought our products and how much they spent. 4 This is a luxury brand, clearly aimed at consumers in the higher . 5 Our latest was very successful – sales increased by over 20%! 6 The company were really lucky – there was a whole news item on their latest innovation, so they got a lot of as a result. 15.3 Complete the collocation forks. Use a dictionary to find one more word to add to each list. 1 loyalty satisfaction needs expectations 3 identity awareness recognition 2 segmentation share 4 development design placement dictionary.cambridge.org 15.4 Look at B. Choose the correct collocation. 1 It’s been 10 years since Kate first set up our in-oﬀice / out-of-oﬀice / in-house marketing team, and now we employ 13 marketers working in 3 countries. 2 We want to increase brand understanding / awareness / recognise among young professionals. 3 Our last campaign went airtime / guerrilla / viral and was shared on social media all over the world. 4 One way to measure customer / target / brand satisfaction is to put a questionnaire on your website, and ask questions about how happy people are with your service. 5 We got a lot of public / press / paper coverage when we gave out free energy monitors as part of last year’s ‘Energy Week’. 6 The objective / customer / target audience for our new sportswear range is active parents. 15.5 Read these remarks by different people. Then answer the questions. Chloe: We want to encourage people to keep buying our products and so we give them discounts when they spend a certain amount of money. Thierry: To promote a monster film, we created giant ‘footprints’ on the beach. People loved it! Clare: If we want to emphasise how healthy the snack bars are, we could get a famous sports personality to appear in the ads. Bruno: We invited some potential customers to look at the new packaging and give their feedback. Veronique: Our market research focused on finding out the age and gender of our customers. Freddy: We asked people to tell us where they shopped and how often they bought our products. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Who wanted to know about the demographic profile of their customers? Whose company used a focus group to do some research? Who is talking about celebrity endorsement? Who wanted to know about their customers’ buying habits? Who is talking about customer loyalty? Whose company uses guerrilla marketing? English Collocations in Use Advanced 35 16 A Customer services Shopping online or on the high street Most companies carry out surveys1 to find out what customers or potential customers feel about their products and services. I answered one recently about online shopping. I personally much prefer to go shopping on the high street rather than to shop on the internet. You get a much better impression of whether something is good value for money or truly fit for purpose2 when yo