Differences between Approach, Method, Procedures and Techniques

Differences between Approach, Method, Procedures and Techniques


An approach is a set of common assumptions about what language is and how it is learned. It is the sum of our philosophy on both the theory of language and the theory of learning. In other words, a language teaching approach explains:
(a) The nature of language,
(b) How knowledge of a language is acquired,
(c) And the conditions that encourage language acquisition.


A method is a practical application of an approach. At the level of a method, a theory is put into practice. It includes decisions about:
(a) The particular skills to be taught (LSRW),
(b) The roles of the teacher and the learner in language teaching and learning,
(c) The required procedures and techniques,
(d) The content to be taught,
(e) And the order in which the content will be presented.

It also requires a detailed syllabus organization, material selection to improve the quality of education, and methods to assess learners and evaluate teaching and learning. It is a type of arranging system that is based on the philosophical grounds of an approach.


According to Jeremy Harmer (2001), procedures are "an organised set of techniques." They are the step-by-step procedures for carrying out a method. In the grammar-translation method, for example, a common procedure is to begin by explaining the grammar rules and showing these rules through sentences that the students must then translate into their mother tongue. A procedure, according to Harmer, is "smaller than a method and larger than a technique."


Implementing a procedure requires specific practices and behaviours that work in the teaching of a language in accordance with an exact methods. These practices and behaviours are the techniques on which all procedures depend. In this way, techniques are an element of procedures. They are the actual classroom steps that lead to a specific outcome. Every procedure is carried out using a variety of techniques. They could take the form of an exercise or any activity required to complete a task.
For instance, when using videos, teachers often use a technique called “silent viewing” which consists of playing the video without sound and asking students to figure out what the characters were saying.

Differences between Approach, Method, Procedures, and Techniques


In a simple terms, an approach tells methods using both the theory of language and the theory of learning, according to this framework. Methods are the actual actions of approaches. They are theories that have been put into action. Methods, in turn, affect procedures. They are step by step events with predetermined outcomes. Techniques are used in procedures to achieve the desired results.
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