Helping a non-native speaker

Subject: Helping a non-native speaker
From: "J.A.W.D. Glennie" <jawd_glennie -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2007 04:27:17 -0700 (PDT)

This question is directed especially at whirlers that have experience teaching English as a second language.

I work for a small software company in the US that has a number of developers that are not native English speakers. One of these individuals has been assigned to write his first functional spec and has asked me to help him improve his written English.

I have a good idea how to address most of the issues I'm seeing (I have a fair amount of experience with editing), but one has me stumped. This individual's native language does not have articles (a/an/the), so he uses them very inconsistently in his written English. The result is text that is surprisingly difficult to read even though most of the text is actually pretty sound.

Does anyone know any techniques that I can recommend to help him use articles more consistently?



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