Category Archives: Education

Some Common English Errors By Native Turkish Speakers

In my job as a lecturer in Computer Engineering in Turkey, I frequently have the opportunity to read the writings of native speakers of Turkish who have English as a second language. Here I have compiled some of the typical deviations from canonical English (if there is any such thing); the hope is that Turkish speakers of English can examine these and improve their writing.

Please do not use the below as a reference for how Turkish native speakers may use English in comparison to native speakers of other languages – the target of this post is Turkish speakers. Many of the patterns of usage will be the same for native speakers of other languages as many stem from peculiarities of English.

─░lgilenmek/be interested in/get involved in

The problematic text: I want to be interested in robotics.

The correct text: I am interested in robotics and I want to get involved in it.

Comment: Here the word ilgilenmek has multiple meanings that become separate words in English. Involved and interested contain these separate meanings.

There is not any

I have deleted this item as the correct usage seems to depend a lot on the region of English used. However, the idiomatic phrase might not be as expected.

Homeworks / homework / assignments

The problematic text: We have too many homeworks.

The correct text: We have too much homework / too many assignments.

Comment: Homework is an uncountable noun – expressing continuous not discrete quantities. Assignments are countable.

By using

I have deleted this item as the issue was more related to a specific example of text and the example I had was not appropriate. With thanks to the individual who challenged me on this.

Kontrol / control / checking

The problematic text: This will be controlled by human resources.

The correct text: This will be checked by human resources.

Comment: Although kontrol would seem to translate directly into control, it more often would be translate as check. The English to control frequently translates into Turkish as denetlemek.