Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Vocabulary Tips: Learning New Vocabulary

I recommend that students don't try to learn too much vocabulary at once. It's better to choose six words a day than to learn a great big list of them at the last moment. Also, they should try to categorise the words they learn into concept groups, such as weather, food, jobs, etcetera. There are many things to pay attention to when learning new words. Here are some suggestions:

  • The translation
  • The pronunciation
  • Parts of Speech
  • An example of the word used in context
  • Collocations (which words it is commonly used with)
  • Concept Groups

I'll provide you with an example to show what I mean:

It's a hot day.
day, drink, weather,
Weather, Food

Obviously, it isn't necessary to use all of these headings, and different students will need to learn different aspects of vocabulary, but noting down a few more ideas than just the translation helps a great deal when they come across this word again. One more suggestion for the really disciplined is to use a vocabulary notebook, so that revision of words learned is more organised.


Rabi said...


Rum Tan said...

Reading is the best way of improving one’s vocabulary. Start reading from newspapers and magazines. You can also learn a lot of words by reading the dictionary. I agree with you that "don't try to learn too much vocabulary at once" but make sure you learn daily some new words and use those words in daily conversations. The most important thing that I used to enhance my vocabulary is to making notes of all new words and revising weekly.