This post contains a selection of links related to language and words in the news. These can be items from the latest news, blog posts or interesting websites related to global English, language change, education in general, and language learning and teaching in particular.
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Trench talk: a guide to first world war slang
By the end of the war some terms that in 1914 had been regarded as criminal or service slang were being used in middle-class drawing rooms.
Editor confession: I used the non-literal ‘literally’
I was surprised to realize that I had, for the first time, used literally to describe something that wasn’t literal – and that I was okay with it.
Accents in Britain
The Guardian asked its readers if they had ever experienced discrimination based on their accent. More than a hundred replied.
The rise in the use of the terms ‘learner’ and ‘learning’ can be seen in policy documents, educational research and everyday speech, and it really got going in the mid 1980s.
Gamification: Don’t say it, don’t do it, just stop
In education, gamification is the hellspawn of No Child Left Behind and other kinds of quant-led learning policies.
The A-Z of Summer Schools
Summer is well underway, and so are summer schools. Here’s an entertaining behind-the-scenes A-Z of this curious institution.
Books, science, dictionaries, words and language
Grammar quiz: Do you know the passive voice?
Sometimes people criticize sentences for being in the passive voice when they actually aren’t. Try this quiz.
Do we discriminate based on accents?
New research suggests people often face discrimination because of the way they sound (22 minutes, hat tip to the indefatigable Stan Carey).