Notional-functional syllabus

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More than a method or an approach to teaching, the notional-functional syllabus is a way of organizing a language learning course and incorporating "real" language into a classroom situation.

Developed in reaction to the audio-lingual method, which concentrated on getting grammar structures "off pat" using drills far removed from real use of language, the idea was to present language according to the needs of students in terms of notions, that is, the context or situation in which people communicate, and functions, referring to how they communicate, i.e. giving opinions, greeting, and so on.

See also