Glossary (Version 8.4)

A grammatical unit that refers to a happening or state (for example, ‘The netball team won’ [happening], ‘The cartoon is an animation’ [state]).

A clause usually contains a subject and a verb group/phrase (for example, ‘The team [subject] has played [verb group/phrase] a fantastic game’), which may be accompanied by an object or other complements (elements that are closely related to the verb – for example, ‘the match’ in ‘The team lost the match’) and/or adverbials (for example, ‘on a rainy night’ in ‘The team won on a rainy night’).

A clause can be either a ‘main’ or ‘subordinate clause’ depending on its function:

  • main clause does not depend on or function within the structure of another clause.
  • subordinate clause depends on or functions within the structure of another clause – it may function directly within the structure of the larger clause, or indirectly by being contained within a group/phrase.

In these examples square brackets have been used to indicate the subordinate clause:

  • ‘I took my umbrella [because it was raining].’
  • ‘[Because I am reading Shakespeare], my time is limited.’
  • ‘The man [who came to dinner] is my brother.’

Clause type is also referred to as mood. It refers to the classification of clauses in terms of their primary function. There are four main clause types in English: declarative, interrogative, imperative, and exclamative.

Orderly, logical, and internally consistent relation of parts.

Grammatical or lexical relationships that bind different parts of a text together and give it unity. Cohesion is achieved through various devices such as connectives, ellipses and word associations (sometimes called lexical cohesion). These associations include synonyms, antonyms (for example, ‘study/laze about’, ‘ugly/beautiful’), repetition (for example, ‘work, work, work – that’s all we do!’) and collocation (for example, ‘friend’ and ‘pal’ in, ‘My friend did me a big favour last week. She’s been a real pal.’).

Words that commonly occur in close association with one another (for example, ‘blonde’ goes with ‘hair’, ‘butter’ is ‘rancid’ not ‘rotten’, ‘salt and pepper’ not ‘pepper and salt’.

Conveys knowledge and/or understandings to others.

Estimate, measure or note how things are similar or dissimilar.

Consisting of multiple interconnected parts or factors.

A complex sentence has one or more subordinate clauses. In the following examples, the subordinate clauses are indicated by square brackets: ‘I took my umbrella [because it was raining].’; ‘[Because I am reading Shakespeare], my time is limited.’; ‘The man [who came to dinner] is my brother.’

A sentence with two or more main clauses of equal grammatical status, usually marked by a coordinating conjunction such as ‘and’, ‘but’ or ‘or’. In the following examples, the main clauses are indicated by square brackets: ‘[Jill came home this morning] [but she didn't stay long].’; ‘[Kim is an actor], [Pat is a teacher], [and Sam is an architect].’

Strategies and processes used by readers to make meaning from texts. Key comprehension strategies include:

  • activating and using prior knowledge
  • identifying literal information explicitly stated in the text
  • making inferences based on information in the text and their own prior knowledge
  • predicting likely future events in a text
  • visualising by creating mental images of elements in a text
  • summarising and organising information from a text
  • integrating ideas and information in texts
  • critically reflecting on content, structure, language and images used to construct meaning in a text.

Seeing one thing in terms of another, for example, argument is war; prices are rising.

A word class that joins other words, phrases or clauses together in logical relationships such as addition, time, cause or comparison. There are two types of conjunctions: coordinating conjunctions and subordinating conjunctions.

Coordinating conjunctions are words that link words, groups/phrases and clauses in such a way that the elements have equal grammatical status. They include conjunctions such as ‘and’, ‘or’, ‘but’:

  • ‘Mum and Dad are here’ (joining words)
  • ‘We visited some of our friends, but not all of them’ (joining noun groups/phrases)
  • ‘Did he miss the train or is it just late?’ (joining clauses).

Subordinating conjunctions introduce certain kinds of subordinate clauses. They include conjunctions such as ‘after’, ‘when’, ‘because’, ‘if’ and ‘that’:

  • ‘When the meeting ended we went home’ (time)
  • ‘That was because it was raining’ (reason)
  • ‘I'll do it if you pay me’ (condition)
  • ‘I know that he is ill’ (declarative)
  • ‘I wonder whether/if she’s right?’ (interrogative).

Formed after careful thought.

The environment in which a text is responded to or created. Context can include the general social, historical and cultural conditions in which a text is responded to and created (the context of culture) or the specific features of its immediate environment (context of situation). The term is also used to refer to the wording surrounding an unfamiliar word that a reader or listener uses to understand its meaning.

An accepted practice that has developed over time and is generally used and understood, for example, the use of specific structural aspects of texts such as in report writing with sections for introduction, background, discussion and recommendations.

Critical perspectives are formed by students when they make meaning from literature based on engaging with aspects of the text(s) studied. In Literature, students discuss and debate aspects of texts establishing their views through logical argument. Students reflect on the aesthetic qualities of literary texts, appreciate the power of language and inquire into the relationship between personal preference and texts, authors, audiences and contexts, thereby forming their own critical perspectives.

Examine the component parts of an issue or information, for example the premise of an argument and its plausibility, illogical reasoning or faulty conclusions.

Evaluation of an issue or information that includes considering important factors and available evidence in making critical judgement that can be justified.