Expressions for discussion and debate

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Expressions for discussion and debate

  1. 1. EXPRESSIONS FOR DISCUSSION AND DEBATEAsking someone for their opinion § That’s a difficult question to answer, because…about a topic § That’s a tough question to answer, because…Yes/No Questions § To be honest, that’s a difficult question, because … § Do you believe in …? § That’s a very good question. The reality is § Do you believe in …? that … § Do you think we should …? § What do you mean by that? § Do you think everybody should …? § What do you mean by …? § Do you think that…? § Well, it depends on what you mean… § Would you consider …? § Well, if you ask me, it all depends on your § Would you ever consider …? circumstances… § Well....OR Questions Asking someone information § Are you for or against …? § Would you prefer…? § Would you rather …? § I’d like to know § What is better: - … or …? § I’m interested in § Could you tell me..?WH Questions § Could I ask about …? § Do you know if…? § What do you think of …? § Do you know what….is? § What do you think of …? § Do you happen to know whether or not…? § What do you think of package holidays? § Do you happen to know what…. Is? § What do you think is the problem between … and …? Presenting arguments § What do you think is the problem with …? § What do you think are the causes of …? Presenting the most important point § What are the advantages and disadvantages…? § The main thing is… § The most important thing is…Negative Yes/No Questions § Primarily § Most importantly, § Don’t they…? § Don’t you think it’s better to …? Presenting a number of arguments § Don’t you understand that …? § Don’t you see that …? § First of all, … § Can’t you see that …? § Firstly, … § Wouldn’t it be better to …? § Well, firstly … § Wouldn’t it be wiser to …? § To begin with, … § Wouldn’t you agree that …? § I’d start by … § Why shouldn’t they? § For a start, … § There’re two points here. Firstly, …Delaying Strategies Secondly, … § There are two problems here…. Moreover § I can’t answer that directly. § You also have to consider § I’ll need time to think about that. § That’s a very interesting question, because… 1
  2. 2. EXPRESSIONS FOR DISCUSSION AND DEBATEAdding an argument Agreeing § Also, .... Expressing complete agreement § Again, that depends on … § In addition, … § Exactly! § What’s more, … § Precisely! § I might add that… § Totally! § Perhaps I should also mention… § Absolutely! § Not to mention the fact that … § That’s right! § Plus the fact that… § Correct! § Not only that, but… § You’re right! § You’re so right!Giving your opinion about a topic § That’s so true! § I couldn’t agree with you more!Expressing a strong opinion § I’m with you on that § That’s just what I was thinking! § In my opinion, … § That’s exactly what I think. § In my view, … § That’s a good point. § In my reckoning, … § That’s just how I see it. § I strongly believe in … § My feelings exactly. § I definitely think that … § I’ll say! § Well, if you ask me, … § You can say that again! § Well, I think … § I believe Agreeing in part § I strongly believe § I have a reason to believe § Yes, perhaps, however ... § I’m sure that… § Well, yes, but ... § I’m pretty sure that… § Yes, in a way, however ... § Hmm, possibly, but ...Expressing a strong value ( It’s / They’re + value § Yes, I agree up to a point, however ...adjective) § Well, you have a point there, but ... § Theres something there, I suppose, § It’s a nonsense to … however... § ... It’s a scandal, because … § I guess you could be right, but ... § It’s perfect for … § Yes, I suppose so, however ... § It’s wrong… Likewise, … § Thats worth thinking about, but ... § They’re ideal … Expressing conditional agreementExpressing certainty § I’d agree with you if … § According to government statistics, … § I’d certainly agree if you’re thinking of … § Actually, … § In fact, … § Clearly, … § Obviously, … § People have always … § People just won’t continue to … § Without doubt, … § There’s no doubt that …. § Undoubtedly § Surely, … 2
  3. 3. EXPRESSIONS FOR DISCUSSION AND DEBATE Disagreeing in part ( appeal to logic )Disagreeing § Not necessarily § That doesn’t necessarily follow.Expressing complete disagreement § That’s not necessarily true § That isn’t strictly true. § I don’t think so! § I disagree § I disagree entirely. Countering § I’m afraid I can’t agree. § I’m afraid you’re wrong Countering directly (through antithesis) § On the contrary! § But § Definitely not! § But who can say that …? § Rubbish! § But why …? § Nonsense! § But if … § That’s ridiculous! § But surely, … § Never in a million years! § Countering politely (through agreement followedUsing irony to express disagreement by antithesis) § Come off it! § Yes, but remember that § Come on! § Yes, but it isn’t that … § Do you really think so? § What! Countering politely (through partial agreement § You can’t actually mean that! followed by antithesis) § You can’t be serious! § Are you pulling my leg? § That may be so, but … § Are you kidding? § That may be true, but … § You must be kidding! § That may be so, … § That might have been the case once, but …Dismissing an argument as irrelevant or § Well, maybe they do, but …improbable. § You may be right about …, but .. § Maybe…But the problem is… § That isn’t the point. § That’s a good idea, but… § That’s highly debatable. § That’s a good point, but… § That’s highly unlikely. § I’d love to, but… § That would be great, except that…Disagreeing diplomatically (through doubt) § That may be so, but… § Possibly, but… § I wonder whether that’s the case. § …, but what I’m concerned with is… § Hmmm, I’m not sure about that.. § …, but what I’m afraid of is… § I’m not sure (that) it works like that. § …, but what bothers me is… § I’m not so sure about that. § …, but what I don’t like is… § I’m not so certain § …, but what I’m concerned with is… § Well, I’m not sure whether you can really … § Well, I don’t know… Countering using "after all" "at least" "even so" § Well, it depends… both for concession and antithesis § I’m inclined to disagree with that… § … After all, … § At least there’s … § But at least… § Well, even so, … 3
  4. 4. EXPRESSIONS FOR DISCUSSION AND DEBATELogical Argument ClarificationQuestions or conclusions based on conditions Asking someone to repeatwith "if" § Pardon me? § Pardon? § If …, why don’t they just …? § Excuse me? § What if …? § Sorry? § And what happens if …? § I’m sorry? § What would happen then if …? § I beg you pardon? § If that is so…, (then) …. § Could you say that again? § That would be true if… § Would you repeat that please? § You would be right if… § Would you mind repeating that please? § That would make sense if… § Sorry, what did you say? § It’d be O.K. if … § Sorry, what was that? § What’s that again?Questions based on conditions with sentenceadverbials " then" and "so" When you can’t follow the logical progression in someone’s argument § But if you… Then how do you go about …? § Then can you tell me what’s wrong with …? § You lost me there. § I’m lost. § I’m not following.Expressing Cause and effect § I don’t follow. § I didn’t get that.Cause § The reason why… is … Asking for clarification through short Yes/No § The reason why … is that … Questions inviting illustration or example. § Due to …,… § Because… § And are they right? § Because of… § Does that make it ok? § Because…, § Can you be a bit more specific? § Since…, § Are you saying that …?. § …is why… § Are we talking about …?Result Clarification through "What" or "How" § For this reason,… Questions inviting illustration or § For this reason alone, … example. § Owing to this, … § This is why … § What’s wrong with that? § That’s why… § What’s wrong with …?. § This is the reason why … § What do you mean? § Therefore § What do you mean by …? § So § What are you trying to say? § As a result § In what way? § Consequently,… § How do you mean? § Thus,… § Why do you say that?. § Why is that § Why not? § Can you explain why …? § Why do you think that? 4
  5. 5. EXPRESSIONS FOR DISCUSSION AND DEBATEGiving clarification / Reiteration through Interruptingreference to subject Polite interruption § I’m talking about … § Sorry, but… § I’m saying that … § May I say something? § What I’m saying is that … § May I add something? § The whole point of this is that… § May I ask a question? § That’s what this discussion’s about. § I’d like to say something about that § I’m talking about … Holding the floorGiving clarification after misunderstanding § Hold on § What I mean is… § Hold on a second § What I meant is… § Yes, I was about to mention that. § What I’m saying is… § Well, I was about to come to th.t § What I’m trying to say is… § Sorry, I haven’t finished yet § Don’t get me wrong… § … I haven’t made my point yet § Don’t misunderstand me… § … I’m about to make my point § Let me put it another way, … § … I’m almost done § That’s not what I said… § … If you could just give me a second § That’s not what I meant § ... If you let me finish, I’ll tell you! § What I said was… § Please let me finish § What I really said/mean/meant… § Could you wait until I’m done? § You must have misunderstood me… § I’m talking here! § Let’s get it straight… § Would you let me finish? § Would you hold on a second?Illustrating a point When two people start speaking at the same time § For example, … § For instance, … § Please § Take for example … § Go ahead § A classic example of this is… § You first § A classic example of this would be… § Please, I can wait § To illustrate my point… § It wasn’t all that relevant § Let me give you an example… § It wasn’t important § Just as an example, let me … § Never mind.Expressing solutions and alternatives Specific cases § The solution is to … Then you will ... § In that case § The best way to … is … § In that respect § To …, you really have to …. § If you are talking about…, then… § There are many choices. You can … You § As far as that goes… can ….... § On that point… § Alternatively, … § Instead, … § The alternative is… 5
  6. 6. EXPRESSIONS FOR DISCUSSION AND DEBATEExceptions Conclusions § There are exceptions, of course… § To make a long story short,… § One should mention, or course… § So in short,… § An exception to that is… § So you see… § This does include… § So, finally,… § Except of course… § So,… § One exception is… § All in all,… § Another exception is… § In the end,… § To conclude,…Getting back to the point § To sum up,… § To summarize,… § Summing up, … § Anyway § To put it simply,… § In any case,… § To put it in a few words, … § To return to… § In a nutshell,… § Returning back to… § In brief, … § To get back to the point… § To be brief,… § Let’s get back to the point… § Where was I? § What were we talking about?Generalizations § Generally,… § In general, … § As a rule,… § Usually, § Typically, § By and large, § On average, § Generally speaking, § Speaking in general terms,… 6
  7. 7. EXPRESSIONS FOR DISCUSSION AND DEBATE § Then...Soliciting feedback § And then? § Such as...? § Mh hmnMaking sure that you have the listener’s § Uh-huhattention. Keeping the conversation by showing surprise. § Right? § You know? § Really? § (you) know what I mean? § Is that right? § You understand? § I didn’t know that! § Got me? § Wow! § Got it? § Are you sure? § How do you know?Making sure that the listener is following your § How do you know that?explanation or logical argument. § Who told you that? § No way! § (are) You following? § No! § Are you following me? § (are) you serious? § Are you with me? § For real? § Okay so far? § How’s that possible? § Do you understand so far? § Have you got it? § (It) Makes sense, right? ExplanationsReminding the listener of something you said § Let’s see...earlier. § Ok! § Let me put it this way § Remember? § Let me put it another way. § Remember when I said...? § Let me see if I can explain it for you § Here’s the thing.Providing feedback § Here is what I mean. § This is what I want to say.Keeping the conversation § I’ll try to explain. § Let me try again. § Right § Here’s what you need to know/remember § Okay § Yeah § I know what you mean. § I know. § I see... § Of course § That’s normal § TrueKeeping the conversation by asking the speakerto provide more information. § Yes? § And? § Well? § So? 7

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