Vocabulary building for C2 exams

C2 Level exams are mainly about vocabulary. Vocabulary is built brick by brick. Learning one new word leads to learning many others. Check the exact meaning of every new word from the dictionary instead of trying to guess the meaning from its context. Check a thesaurus for synonyms to enrich your vocabulary further. Especially for the IELTS exams, learners need to be precise and use suitable words for each situation otherwise they lose points.



Read and Listen as much as possible.

Vocabulary is learned in context so pick a TV show, radio, podcast, magazine or book that interests you for additional practice.  Words rarely have only one strict meaning, so coming across the same word which this time has a different meaning makes you understand how words function in a sentence.

Look up words and synonyms

One of the good things with the Internet is that there are plenty of resources to look up a word or find a synonym for that matter. Personally I do not use a specific online dictionary when I come across an unknown word. Instead I prefer to google (yes, google is officially a verb!) the word or use google translate for a quick translation into Greek.

Do not memorize vocabulary lists

Vocabulary lists belong in the past. Memorizing definitions of long lists of words may work for some students but more often than not they will be forgotten after a while.

Learn word chunks and collocations

Remember words are often used together with other words. Try to learn word chunks instead of single words. Also collocations are very common in English and learning them is important. A collocation is two or more words that often go together, like “hard work” or “make a mistake”. Collocations sound “right” or “natural” to native speakers, so the more collocations you know and use, the more natural your English will sound. You’ll find it much easier to understand native speakers if you learn collocations, and you can find hundreds of the most commonly used ones online.

Offer lots of practice

Students do not have the chance to practice the foreign language they are learning on a daily basis. Our day to day tasks are all carried in Greek and we only practice listening skills from TV shows, Netflix etc. Providing students with the opportunity to practice their vocabulary will allow them to gradually build a sufficient “bank” of words useful for any interaction or language exam. •




ELT News

ELT News