In this course Scott Thornbury and Penny Ur take a fresh look at accuracy and fluency in teaching grammar and vocabulary. With them, you’ll explore assumptions and challenge beliefs that you may never have considered. Regardless of your starting point, you’ll leave the course with a deeper understanding of both accuracy and fluency, and greater confidence in your ability to teach grammar and vocabulary effectively.

It’s generally accepted that the Communicative Approach was instrumental in shifting the emphasis away from accuracy and onto fluency. But many teachers (and learners) still feel that we haven’t yet found the balance we’re looking for between teaching for fluency and teaching for accuracy.
In this course we will address the following questions (although not necessarily in this order)

  • What do we mean, in practice, by the terms “fluency” and “accuracy?”
  • Which is more important? Which should come first?
  • What is “accurate” language use? Who decides the standards of “accuracy?”
  • What is the place of the learning of grammar in achieving fluency? of the learning of vocabulary?
  • What are some useful practical procedures that can increase both fluency and accuracy in the teaching of grammar? Of vocabulary?

Choose the study option that works best for you

Personal Learning – $59

In this course, you will read articles recommended by the instructor, watch four recorded sessions, and answer four discussion questions. This is not a live course, however, working through these steps will certainly add to your knowledge base. Teachers’ feedback on this original live course was extremely positive!

Upgrade to get your professional development certified with iTDi

Professional Development Hours Certified – $79

If you would like to receive a Certificate of Completion verifying 20 hours of professional development credit, email your answers to the discussion questions in a separate word document to for evaluation.
Our iTDi team will review your submissions, and confirm that you have invested time into your answers, reflected on your own context, and received a valuable professional development experience.

For certification purposes, please tell us your name as you wish it to appear on your certificate, your email address, and the name of course you have completed.

Take this course


As always, iTDi believes that all teachers deserve the same opportunity to improve themselves. Therefore, a limited number of scholarships will be available for this course. Please apply through our scholarship application.

About Penny Ur:

Penny Ur has more than thirty-five years’ experience as an English teacher in elementary, middle and high schools in Israel. Now retired, she has taught B.A. and M.A. courses at Oranim Academic College of Education and Haifa University. She has presented papers at TESOL, IATEFL and other English teachers’ conferences worldwide. She was for ten years the editor of the Cambridge Handbooks for Language Teachers series. Her books include Discussions that work (1981), Five minute activities (co authored with Andrew Wright) (1992), Grammar practice activities (2nd Edition) (2009), Vocabulary activities (2012), A course in English language teaching (2012), and Discussions and more (2014), all published by Cambridge University Press.

About Scott Thornbury:

Scott Thornbury is a teacher and teacher educator, with over 30 years’ experience in English language teaching. He is currently Associate Professor of English Language Studies at the New School in New York, teaching on an on-line MATESOL program. His previous experience includes teaching and teacher training in Egypt, UK, Spain, and his native New Zealand. Scott’s writing credits include several award-winning books for teachers on language and methodology including The A-Z of ELT, How to Teach Grammar and Teaching Unplugged. He is series editor for the Cambridge Handbooks for Teachers (CUP) and was also the co-founder of the dogme ELT group. Scott’s thought-provoking blog, An A-Z of ELT, is a popular site for many teachers and has been adapted as an e-book, Big Questions in ELT.

iTDi Advanced Skills Self Study courses allow you to access and enjoy the content of popular Advanced Skills live courses, at your own pace and at a time that is convenient for you.


Course Curriculum

About Revisiting Fluency and Accuracy in Vocabulary and Grammar Teaching Self Study Course FREE 00:00:00
What participants will learn in this course.
Revisiting Fluency and Accuracy Self Study 1 00:00:00
In this session we'll define what we mean by fluency and accuracy. Then we'll look at ways that we can increase grammatical accuracy.
Revisiting Fluency and Accuracy Self Study 2 00:00:00
Revisiting Fluency and Accuracy Self Study 3 00:00:00
Revisiting Fluency and Accuracy Self Study 4 00:00:00
Vocabulary is probably THE most important component of language proficiency to learn for comprehension … and also for production. In this session we'll look at aspects of vocabulary acquisition and use for fluency.
Next steps FREE 00:00:00
How to get your certificate and what you can do next as part of the iTDi community.
  • $59.00$79.00
  • 730 Days
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