Academic Vocabulary in Context

Click on the “word family” to see collocations and examples of usage:

Add – addition – additive

Conclude – conclusive – conclusion

Contract – contractual – contraction

Count – account – accountant

Design – designing – designation

Deduct – deduce – deduction

Divide – divisive – division

Employ – employment – employee

Entitle – entitled – entitlement

General – genetic – generation

Include – inclusive – exclusive

Pay – payment – payee

Proceed – process – procedure

Proper – property – proprietary

Provide – providor – provision

Learning Vocabulary in Context

It is important to learn vocabulary in context because words occur in patterns. Always learn a phrase, not a single word.

The words in a phrase contribute to the meaning of the individual word. If you learn phrases or collocations instead of individual words, you will learn faster and more efficiently.

Look at the context of the word to find clues to its meaning. This is an important skill which helps in English tests like IELTS, TOEIC, TOEFL and Cambridge exams. Make yourself familiar with the words in a field of meaning and learn the common collocations.

The best way to do this is in a story or a text of some kind. Learning lists of indivduals is generally a waste of time. Learning lists of phrases or sentences in a story would be better.

Testing – Learning to Make Mistakes

Reading a list of incorrect phrases and then choosing which one is crrect is not a good technique to learn. It is better to expose yourself to many correct examples. You can do that by reading examples of vocabulary in context.


Look at the headings above each answer. They give clues to the context in which a word occurs. Learn about meaning. Learn about field of meaning. Learn that words come in families and groups of related ideas, not as individuals.

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