An ELT Glossary : EOP - English for Occupational Purposes



English for Occupational Purposes is a branch of ESP (English for Specific Purposes) and covers situations in which learners are studying English for work related reasons. The courses are based on an analysis of their specific communicative needs in their work.

For example, a waiter dealing with foreign clients might need to :

- describe the content of dishes on the menu and the way they are cooked (It's pasta with seafood cooked in a white wine and cream sauce)
- understand and respond appropriately to requests and orders (Can we have a bottle of the house white?)
- ask about requirements (Would you like coffee?)

etc etc.

EOP courses will therefore have often titles like :

English for Nursing
English for Shopfloor Staff
English for Accountants

Where communicative needs become more complex,the courses may become more specific, not aiming to deal with the full range of needs involved in the job, but just with one area. This is particularly true in Business English, which may focus on eg :

English for Sales Presentations
English for Business Reports
Negotiation Skills in English

Alternatively, the courses may focus on the more general needs of a specific industry :

English for Banking and Finance
Legal English
English for Military Purposes
English for the Oil Industry


Further Reading

OneStopEnglish provides a range of materials for various fields within EOP