Fast food, not quick food

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Take a break, rough estimate, get drunk, crystal clear. What do these expressions have in common? They are collocations.

Collocations are typical word combinations – words that usually go together in normal use. They like to be together. For example, “a big mistake,” not “a large mistake.”
Collocations are fixed expressions or word pairings that just sound "right" to native English speakers because we tend to use these combinations over and over again. There is nothing wrong with speaking freely and not collocating, but doing so would reveal that you aren't a native speaker whose meaning many not be clear.

The bad news: Word pairings and phrasal verbs are collocations. These fixed expressions must be memorized.
The good news: I can help you remember a few more easily.

There are many communication collocations that begin with “make” and “have.”

Make is used with most nouns for ways of speaking/planning. For example, you make a complaint, a promise, an offer, a threat, a speech, an apology, a point, a confession, an accusation, a suggestion, an arrangement, a decision, a plan, an appointment.

Have is used with most nouns which involve a two-way discussion. For example, you have a conversation, a chat, a discussion, an argument, a fight, a row, a meeting, an interview.

I hope that “makes a difference” :)

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