Jones, Christian and Waller, Daniel
If only it were true: the problem with the four conditionals.
ELT Journal, 65
Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/elt/ccp101
The traditional division of conditionals into four main types (zero, first, second, and third) has long been called into question. Unfortunately, the awareness that this description does not reflect conditional patterns in actual usage has not generally been reflected in EFL coursebooks. This article re-examines the arguments for a description of conditional patterns which reflects actual usage and uses corpus data to demonstrate the kind of patterns in frequent use. It then suggests two teaching approaches that may help teachers to tackle a variety of conditional patterns in the classroom.
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