C2.2 – Collocations with ‘expectations’

Some activities based on collocations with expectations.  You can find answers at the bottom of the post.

1)  Verbs that collocate with expectations.  Complete the table with the appropriate words from the list:  exceed    surpass    fulfil    meet    fall short of    match    come up to    go beyond    live up to    satisfy   defy

An experience is worse than anticipated An experience is as good as anticipated An experience is better than anticipated

2)  More verbs that collocate with expectations.  Odd one out:  Which verbs in each group have similar meanings? which has a different meaning?

a)       Expectations have been raised by promises made in the elections.b)      Expectations have soared since the club won promotion last season.

c)       Expectations for the festival were dampened by the news that some of the bands due to perform had pulled out.  

a)      The news aroused expectations that the Prime Minister would announce her resignation later today.b)      Latest figures from Wall Street continue to confound analysts’ expectations of a fall in share prices.

c)       Expectations of a large election victory for the party have been built up by comments from key political commentators.

a)      The Union continue to hold high expectations that the government will return to negotiations in the near future.b)       One of the keys to retail success is to shape customers’ expectations of what your business can provide them.

c)       One of the new President’s challenges is how to manage the high expectations that accompany his ascent to power.

a)      Expectations of economic recovery have been heightened by the latest financial reports issued by the government.b)      If expectations are successfully lowered during times of economic downturn, society is less likely to experience upheaval and dissent.

c)       With the new album due to be released next month, the lead singer tried to water down fans’ expectations of a repeat of their best selling first record.  “We’ve moved on, the new record is much harder and the songs are less catchy – we’ve developed a much more mature and experimental sound in the last two years.”

3)  Prepositional phrases with expectations.  Complete the following sentences with one of the prepositions given.

a)  _________ all expectations, Usain Bolt could only finish in third place in the 100m semi-final.  (under/against/lower/above)

b) The preparations for the Olympics appear to be running to schedule, contary ____ expectations.  (of/beyond/against/to)

c)  The latest company results are way ________ expectations with a fantastic 17% profit increase reported in the last quarter.  (beyond/at/into/far)

d)  The team has performed ________ their fans’ expectations this season and currently sit in an underwhelming 16th place in the league.  (between/out/below/bottom)

e)  We have high expectations _____ the future of this organisation.  (of/for/over/in)

f)  Expectations ____ success have never been higher.  (in/for/of/on)

g)  What the company has spent is more or less ____ line with expectations.  (in/of/on/out)

4)  Adjectives that collocate with expectation.  Think about the following questions paying attention to the adjectives in each example.  Feel free to leave comments in response to any of the questions.

a)  Have you ever fulfilled a dream that went beyond your wildest expectations?

b)  Can you think of any examples of situations in which widespread expectations were over-high/unreasonable/over-optimistic?

c)  In what ways have traditional family expectations changed over time?  Has this been a change for the better in your opinion?

d)  Will passing the Proficiency exam change or help you meet your career expectations in any way?  How? 

5)  Reading.  Read the blog on the link below about the link between happiness and expectation.  If you’d like to leave a comment with your thoughts on this site, I’d love to read them.  How do you think what the writer says about Denmark compares with life in Spain?

References:  Eric Weiner blogs about expectation and happiness for the NY Times:  http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/07/19/lowered-expectations/

Answers:  1)  Column one:  fall short of  / Column two:  fulfil, meet, match,  come up to, live up to, satisfy / Column three:  surpass, exceed, go beyond.  Defy could probably go in column one or two.   2)  Different meanings:  Column A:  to dampen, Column B:  to confound, Column C:  to hold,  Column D:  to heighten.  3)  a)  against, b)  to,  c)  beyond,  d)  below,  e)  for,  f)  of


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