How to Improve Vocabulary Skills and Knowledge?

Vocabulary is maybe the most important thing in terms of learning a new language. Because if you don’t know enough words to express yourself by writing and speaking, you can have problems when communicating with a person. Again if you don’t know enough words you can’t understand spoken and written texts by listening and reading. On the other hand, even if you aren’t competent in English, you can communicate with other people by just using a single word. Due to these reasons vocabulary is probably the most important thing when learning a new language. So, how can a person improve his or her vocabulary knowledge? Let’s talk about this:


First of all there are three important steps in terms of improving vocabulary knowledge. The first step is learning new words and being able to understand their meanings while reading and listening. The second step is keeping the meanings and usages of these new words on your mind. And the last step is being able to use these words actively while speaking and writing. Now we are going to talk about these 3 steps one by one.


The first step to improve vocabulary is getting exposed to new words and phrases. The best way to do it is reading. If you read a lot of things during the day, you can get exposed to a lot of new words. By simply noting the meanings of these words somewhere you can put those words in your vocabulary.

Some useful sources of reading to improve vocabulary include graded story books and news. Story books are really helpful for increasing vocabulary because they include the most common words in English and these words are repeated again and again throughout the book. In addition, news websites are also quite useful because their content is updated every day. For example breaking news English and VOA special English websites are quite useful for reading and learning new words. There are also other useful websites for reading news and learning vocabulary on the internet. You can just find them by searching them on Google. These websites are quite useful because they are updated regularly and they are adjusted according to learner levels.

Also by listening you can learn lots of new words. For example Elllo is a perfect source for listening and learning new words. You can just search it on google in order to find it and you can listen one dialogue every day.

People generally like trying different methods but some people prefer the traditional ways such as memorizing. If you say that you can sit and study for a long time to memorize words, you can just search the most common 1000 and 2000 words in English and start memorizing them. Nowadays memorization isn’t advised by most professionals but still it can be an effective way for some people.

So, you read a lot and you listen a lot and you get exposed to lots of words. Now the question is how to keep them in your mind? Here are some ways to do it. A basic way to remember words is to keep a vocabulary notebook. Simply you can note down the new words you encounter and you can revise it every day. You can do it by writing or you can also use the notepad of your smart phone to do this. Another strategy I find very useful is using sticky notes. Sticky notes are really helpful when learning new words. Just note the words you learned to sticky notes and put them everywhere in your apartment (on your fridge, on your closet, on the doors in your apartment etc.). This strategy is really useful because you see these items every day. So you don’t make extra effort to learn new words rather you do it automatically.

By using these you have learned new words and you have kept them on your mind. So is it over? Definitely no. After these, you will try to use these new words when you are speaking and writing. At first you will have problems, maybe you won’t remember them while writing and speaking but with time you will be able to use them while writing and speaking.

There are many other strategies to improve vocabulary. Maybe we will talk about them later. But these are the basic and effective ways to improve your vocabulary knowledge. When you complete these steps, you can have a comprehensive vocabulary.

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