The Broadview Book of Common Errors in English – ESL Edition
  • Publication Date: May 31, 1995
  • ISBN: 9781551110080 / 1551110083
  • 218 pages; 6" x 9"

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The Broadview Book of Common Errors in English – ESL Edition

  • Publication Date: May 31, 1995
  • ISBN: 9781551110080 / 1551110083
  • 218 pages; 6" x 9"

The ESL edition of Common Errors in English offers a comprehensive survey of the sorts of difficulties second language learners most often experience with English—and provides real help to students in overcoming them. The body of the book is organized according to grammatical categories, covering such topics as Verb Tense difficulties; Word Order Problems; Negation; Gerunds and Direct Objects; Singular and Plural Difficulties; and Direct and Indirect Speech. Included as well is a comprehensive section on usage and meaning, and a list of words commonly misspelled.

The authors take care to avoid the harshly prescriptive; the book is informed throughout by a sympathetic understanding both of the difficulties that face every ESL student and of the particular problems faced by individuals from different linguistic backgrounds as they learn the peculiarities of English grammar and usage. The book includes a generous selection of exercises informed by these principles, and an accompanying answer key.

Common Errors in English: ESL Edition will be an invaluable reference text for second language learners at a wide variety of levels.


“A practical, well-organized and straightforward guide. This book is a must for every ESL teacher and every ESL student.” — Mark Angerilli, ESL Teacher Training Program, University of British Columbia.

“An excellent easy-to-use reference guide for all students. Especially helpful are the exercises which address specific problems of students who speak certain specific foreign languages.” — Sister Marie Lorraine Bruno, Immaculata College



  • Tenses
    Active and Passive
    Dangling Constructives
    Irregular Verbs
    Ommision of Verbs
    Indirect Speech


  • Gender

Other Parts of Speech

  • Adjectives
    Phrasal Verbs

Word Order
Usage and Meaning

  • Homonyms
    Other Easily Confused Words
    Confusing Adjectives
    Interchangeable Adjectives
    Problems with Usage
    Two words or one?
    Infinitives, Gerunds, and Direct Objects


  • Spelling and Sound


  • The Period
    The Comma
    The Question Mark
    The Exclamation Mark
    The Semi-Colon
    The Colon
    The Dash
    The Apostrophe

Specific Language Difficulties

  • The Problems of English Problems of specific languages and language groups

Language and Gender


  • Part I: Exercises on specific grammatical points
    Part II: General Diagnostic and Language Specific Exercises

Answer Key to Exercises

Martin Boyne recipient of the Governor-General’s Medal when he graduated from Trent University, now teaches English to second language students at the same institution.

Don LePan is the author of The Cognitive Revolution in Western Culture (Macmillan, 1989) and of the first-language edition of The Broadview Book of Common Errors in English (Broadview, 2/e 1992).