Centre for Continuing Education

Understanding English Grammar Course: Level 2

English. Develop your command of the English language with us.

Learn English the smart way with English courses at CCE, the University of Sydney.


From a finite set of grammatical patterns, syntactic and morphological, we can express an infinite set of sentences. This studies more detailed aspects of sentence construction, particularly at the phrase and clause levels, while continuing to examine questions of formality and informality in grammar, of acceptability and the concept of a standard dialect. It will also cover the conventions of punctuation.


  1. a further understanding of how particular types of words, phrases and clauses function in a sentence and a particular knowledge of the forms and function of the verb
  2. an understanding of clause construction, in analysis and synthesis, in the building of complex sentences
  3. a knowledge of the punctuation conventions.



  • Syntactic combinations & morphological possibilities.
  • Grammar comparison with present day – Latin, Old English (Anglo-Saxon).


  • Behaviour and function of the major word classes.
  • Phrase structure.
  • Clause structure.
  • Function classes: subject, object, modifier.

Sentence types

  • Declarative, interrogative, exclamative, imperative.
  • Open and closed interrogatives.

Clause and sentence structure

  • The clause as subject and object.
  • Embedded clauses.
  • Non-finite verbs and non-finite clauses.
  • Text analysis: fiction and journalism.

More about verbs

  • Ditransitive verbs.
  • Copular verbs and predicative complements.
  • Phrasal verbs, phrasal-prepositional verbs.
  • Catenative constructions.
  • The subjunctive.

Function classes

  • Subject, object, modifier, predicative complement.
  • Adjuncts, conjuncts and disjuncts and, but and however as conjuncts.
  • Adverbials: adjuncts, conjuncts and disjuncts.
  • Optional and obligatory adverbials.
  • and, but and however as conjuncts.

Information packaging

  • Passive verbs and sentences.
  • Preposing, subject-complement inversion.
  • Extraposed subject.
  • it-cleft sentences.

Direct and reported speech


Spelling patterns

Discussion points

  • Prescriptive and descriptive grammar.
  • Conversational grammar.
  • Non-standard dialects.

Intended Audience

Participants who have completed Understanding English Grammar – Level 1 or equivalent. Designed for native speakers or those with a very good grasp of the language wanting to understand how grammar works. NOT suitable for English language learners.

Recommended Reading

Extensive handouts will be provided.


  • Expert trainers
  • Central locations
  • Small class sizes
  • Free, expert advice
  • Student materials – yours to keep
  • Statement of completion

What others say.

  • I really enjoyed the course. It was very useful and packed with great information.
    I’m looking forward to starting Level 3 next year, as both previous levels have been outstanding!!!

  • The facilities are comfortable and clean. The whole operation from start to finish is professional and value for money. I have never done at a course at CCE that I havent been 100% satisfied with.