Bulats language functions – persuader

Language Functions refer to the different situations where we use language. Often, the meaning of expressions we use is not easy to understand from the words of the sentence. For example, a person could say ‘I see what you mean but …’ and the meaning of the sentence is ‘I understand what you are saying but my opinion is different.’

In BULATS, your knowledge of Language Functions will be tested. You will see examples of Language Functions in the Reading texts and you will hear people use them in the Listening audios. They are also important in the Writing Test and the Speaking Test. If you can understand the different nuances of meaning, you will improve your score.

This exercise will give you examples of typical expressions that are used to persuade others by giving advice and negotiating.

 

Giving advice
Elementary
I think you need to (go to see the dentist).
You should (go to see the dentist).
You must (go to see the dentist).
How about (going to see the dentist)?
My suggestion is to (go to see the dentist).
My advice is to (go to see the dentist).
Why don’t you (go to see the dentist)?
You could (go to see the dentist).
You really should (go to see the dentist).
 
Intermediate
I suggest that you (go to see the dentist).
I advise you to (go to see the dentist).
I strongly advise you to (go to see the dentist).
It’s generally best to (go to see the dentist).
It’s a good idea to (go to see the dentist).
One thing you could do is (go to see the dentist).
The best thing to do is to (go to see the dentist).
The most important thing to do is (go to see the dentist).
(Going to see the dentist) might work.
(Going to see the dentist) would probably work.
(Going to see the dentist) always works for me.
If I were you, I’d (go to see the dentist).
If I were in your place, I’d (go to see the dentist).
If that happened to me, I’d (go to see the dentist).
If I had that problem, I’d (go to see the dentist).
My recommendation would be to (go to see the dentist).
You’d better (go to see the dentist).
You ought to (go to see the dentist).
 
Advanced
Make sure you (go to see the dentist).
The sooner you (go to see the dentist) the better.
Whatever you do, you should (go to see the dentist).
You have no choice but to (go to see the dentist).
(Going to see the dentist) is worth a try.
I can’t recommend (going to see the dentist) strongly enough.
You should (go to see the dentist), no doubt about it.
 

 

Negotiating
Opening & Stating a position
What’s your opening position?
What’s your objective?
What is your main goal?
We’d like to propose that (you reduce the price).
We propose (a price reduction).
We suggest (a price reduction).
Our position is that we are looking for (a price reduction).
The most important issue for us is (a price reduction/to reduce the price).
I think we can both agree that (prices are important).
I agree with you on that point.
Our intention is (to reduce costs).
Our main priority is (to reduce costs).
If I understand correctly, you want (to reduce costs).
Do you mean (you want us to reduce our prices?)
Am I right in thinking that (you want us to reduce our prices?)
I’m not sure I fully understand your point.
Could you clarify one point for me?
Could you be more specific?
What’s the sticking point for you?
 
Rejecting & Accepting
If you were prepared to (increase your orders), we might be able to (reduce our prices).
We are ready to accept your offer providing you (reduce your prices).
In return for this, would you be willing to (reduce your prices)?
We can offer you (lower prices) so long as you (increase orders).
Would you be willing to accept a compromise?
Let’s try to find a middle way.
I think we can find a middle way.
Can you meet us halfway on (prices)?
We’d be willing to meet you halfway on (prices).
Let’s try to find a way around this.
Can you (reduce your prices)?
Could you move a little more on that?
I’ll have to back out of this deal unless you (reduce your prices).
(Reducing prices) is not on the table.
(Prices) are non-negotiable.
That (price) seems too low.
That (price) seems too high.
I am not very happy with (that price).
I’m willing to be flexible.
I think I can suggest a win-win solution.
 
Summarising a negotiation
This is acceptable to us.
We can agree to/àn that.
I think we have an agreement here.
I think we have a deal.
I think we’ve covered everything.
Let’s confirm the details.
Have we left anything out?
Where do we sign?

 


To go further in your Bulats preparation, you can check out our Language Function summary, or choose one of the study sheets below.