David Carter (1983) identifies three types of ESP: English as a Restricted Language English for Academic and Occupational Purposes English with Specific Topics
Mackay and Mountford (1978) clearly illustrate the difference between restricted language and language with this statement: ... the language of international air-traffic control could be regarded as special, in the sense that the repertoire required by the controller is strictly limited and can be accurately determined situationally, as might be the linguistic needs of a dining-room waiter or air-hostess.
However, such restricted repertoires are not languages, just as a tourist phrase book is not grammar. Knowing a restricted language would not allow the speaker to communicate effectively in novel situation, or in contexts outside the vocational environment. The language used by air traffic controllers or by waiters are examples of English as a restricted language.
A reduced form of a LANGUAGE: ‘Some REGISTERS are extremely restricted in purpose. They thus employ only a limited number of formal items and patterns [and] are known as restricted languages’ (M. A. K. Halliday et al., The Linguistic Sciences and Language Teaching, 1964). Such a system is often artificial and highly specialized, created and used with a particular end in mind:
for example, BASIC ENGLISH, limited in its syntax and lexis, but meant to be used as an international medium; SEASPEAK, a form of English limited to specific procedures and terms, serving to facilitate the safe movement of shipping; headlines, a register reduced in syntax and lexis, used to draw attention to news and other reports, and to indicate their content. See also AIRSPEAK.
A human system of communication which uses structured vocal sounds and can be embodied in other media such as writing, print, and physical signs. Most linguists currently regard the faculty of language as a defining characteristic of being human.
A variety of language defined according to social use, such as scientific, formal, religious, and journalistic. The term was first given broad currency by the British linguist Michael Halliday who drew a contrast between varieties of language defined according to the characteristics of the user (dialects) and those defined according to the characteristics of the situation (registers).
SEASPEAK, also English for maritime communications. The English of merchant shipping, a RESTRICTED LANGUAGE adopted in 1988 by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) of the United Nations for use in ship-to-ship and ship-to-shore communications as a necessary consequence of vastly increased shipping during the 1960s–70s. The need for regularization of practices in one language and the training of officers in its use was agreed, and English, already the language of civil aviation, was chosen by the IMO.
In 1982–3, Seaspeak was created by specialists in maritime communications and applied linguistics, working in Plymouth and Cambridge and funded by the UK government and Pergamon Press. It was made as concise and unambiguous as possible, was restricted to no more than two propositions in any message, allowed for constant checkback and confirmation, and made as few changes as possible to existing practice.
The SEASPEAK Reference Manual by Weeks, Glover, Strevens, and Johnson (Oxford: Pergamon, 1984) was published after worldwide sea trials. Apart from special-format messages (as in stereotyped weather forecasts), all messages begin with a message marker that indicates the nature of what follows, such as advice, information, instruction, intention, question, request, warning, or a response to one of these.
Ship. Lands End Coastguard, Lands End Coastguard. This is Sun Dragon, Sun Dragon. Over. Coastguard. Sun Dragon. This is Lands End Coastguard. Switch to VHF channel one-one. Over. Ship.Lands End Coastguard. This is Sun Dragon. Agree VHF channel one-one. Over. Coastguard. Sun Dragon. This is Lands End Coastguard on channel one-one. Over.
Ship. Lands End Coastguard. This is Sun Dragon. Information: I am returning to Mounts Bay. Reason: north-west gale and very heavy seas. Over. Coastguard. Sun Dragon. This is Lands End Coastguard. Information received: you are returning to Mounts Bay. Reason: north-west gale and very heavy seas. Question: do you require assistance? Over.
Ship.Lands End Coastguard. This is Sun Dragon. Answer: no assistance required, thank you. Nothing more. Over. Coastguard. Sun Dragon. This is Lands End Coastguard. Nothing more. Out.
Also Ogdens Basic English, BASIC [an acronym for British, American, Scientific, International, Commercial]. A reduced form of English devised in the 1920s by the writer and linguist C. K. Ogden, in cooperation with the critic I. A. Richards. It was favored by the British Prime Minister Winston S. Churchill, with some support from the US President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Basic was an exercise in language planning, intended to extract from standard English the minimum grammar and vocabulary needed for everyday communication. Ogden saw it as serving three ends at the same time: an international medium in its own right, an introduction to ‘full’ English, and a kind of plain English.
Also Air Traffic Control English, Aviation English. The English of international civil aviation, a restricted language established after the Second World War by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). Although in some conditions aircraft may use a local language, commercial flying is universally conducted in English.
When speech is necessary, it is as concise and unambiguous as possible, uses only accepted conventions for procedures and message types, is not too dense (that is, does not contain too many propositions before allowing the interlocutor to speak), and has check backs so that speakers can be sure that what was said is what was heard.
Everything used for these purposes is English in grammar, vocabulary, or pronunciation, but some of the vocabulary is technical and specialized. Radio conversation not relevant to a flight is forbidden. International agreements ensure that all pilots are trained in this English, and cockpit conversations as monitored to ensure that rules are adhered to.
Control. BA six zero six Alfa: squawk indent. Pilot. Indenting, BA six zero six Alfa. Control. BA six zero six Alfa, radar contact. Descend to flight level three one zero. Pilot.Leaving flight level three nine zero. Descending to level three one zero. BA six zero six Alfa.
The second type of ESP identified by Carter (1983) is English for Academic and Occupational Purposes. In the Tree of ELT (Hutchinson & Waters, 1987), ESP is broken down into three branches: a) English for Science and Technology (EST), b) English for Business and Economics (EBE), and c) English for Social Studies (ESS). Each of these subject areas is further divided into two branches: English for Academic Purposes (EAP) and English for Occupational Purposes (EOP).
An example of EOP for the EST branch is English for Technicians whereas an example of EAP for the EST branch is English for Medical Studies. Hutchinson and Waters (1987) do note that there is not a clear-cut distinction between EAP and EOP: "· people can work and study simultaneously; it is also likely that in many cases the language learnt for immediate use in a study environment will be used later when the student takes up, or returns to, a job" (p. 16).
Perhaps this explains Carters rationale for categorizing EAP and EOP under the same type of ESP. It appears that Carter is implying that the end purpose of both EAP and EOP are one in the same: employment. However, despite the end purpose being identical, the means taken to achieve the end is very different indeed. I contend that EAP and EOP are different in terms of focus on Cummins (1979) notions of cognitive academic proficiency versus basic interpersonal skills. This is examined in further detail below.
The third and final type of ESP identified by Carter (1983) is English with specific topics. Carter notes that it is only here where emphasis shifts from purpose to topic. This type of ESP is uniquely concerned with anticipated future English needs of, for example, scientists requiring English for postgraduate reading studies, attending conferences or working in foreign institutions.
However, I argue that this is not a separate type of ESP. Rather it is an integral component of ESP courses or programs which focus on situational language. This situational language has been determined based on the interpretation of results from needs analysis of authentic language used in target workplace settings.