School of Linguistics and Applied Language Studies

Learning Vocabulary in Another Language:

A Test of Teachers' Knowledge

1 How many word families does an average adult native speaker of English know?

A 150,000
B 100,000
C 50,000
D 20,000
E don't know

2 If learners know the most frequent 2000 words of English, what percentage of running words in an academic text will be known to them?

A 60%
B 80%
C 90%
D 98%
E don't know

3 What is the most important factor in formal measures of readability?

A background knowledge
B vocabulary knowledge
C reading skill in L1
D grammatical knowledge
E don't know

4 The most effective way of beginning to learn the meaning of a word is by

A the use of a picture
B translation into the first language
C a dictionary definition
D seeing a word in context
E don't know

5 How many words does an average learner of English as a foreign language know after five or six years of four 50 minute English classes per week?

A 1,000
B 3,000
C 5,000
D 10,000
E don't know

6 Initially opposites like hot and cold should be learned

A at the same time
B in quick succession
C as part of a bigger lexical set
D at widely separated times
E don't know

7 Complex words like inventiveness and uncontrollably are usually stored in the brain as

A stems and affixes that are combined when needed
B both as whole units and word parts
C complete analyzed words
D complete unanalyzed words
E don't know

8 Learners most often have problems in guessing the meaning of a word in helpful contexts because they

A give too much attention to the form of the word
B do not use their background knowledge of the topic
C do not draw on clues from neighboring sentences or paragraphs
D do not give attention to the immediate context of the word
E don't know

9 In order to have a good chance of guessing the meaning of an unknown word from context clues, what percentage of the running words in the text does the learner need to know?

A 78%
B 80%
C 90%
D 98%
E don't know

10 When learners know the most common 2000 words of English, the words that they have most difficulty with in academic texts in their specialist area are

A general purpose academic words like assume , concept , diverse
B function words like because , although , hence
C proper nouns like Darwin , Menlo Park , Edgebaston
D technical words like anode , impedance , galvonometer
E don't know

11 The "lexical bar" is

A the Graeco-Latin words of English
B the high frequency words of English
C the function words of English
D the discourse markers of English
E don't know

12 Teachers should deal with low frequency words by

A breaking them into prefixes, stems and suffixes
B letting learners guess them from context
C teaching the learners strategies to deal with them
D providing varied and repeated opportunities to give attention to those words
E don't know

13 Which of these most helps vocabulary learning?

A meeting or using the word in a new way
B having its meaning explained
C meeting the word in context
D searching for the word in a dictionary
E don't know

14 Definitions of unknown words are most effective if

A they are short
B they contain plenty of useful detail
C they are written as complete sentences
D they are accompanied by grammatical information E don't know

15 Most learning of vocabulary used in oral communication tasks involves words

A whose meanings are negotiated in the task
B whose meanings are not negotiated in the task
C which are in the written input to the task
D which are not in the written input to the task
E don't know

16 A "book flood" involves

A doing a lot of intensive reading in class
B setting a lot of intensive reading outside class
C replacing a large part of the class work with extensive reading
D encouraging extensive reading outside class time E don't know

17 The "Lexical Frequency Profile" is a way of

A measuring productive vocabulary use
B deciding what will be classified as high frequency words
C comparing the frequency of selected words
D diagrammatically representing vocabulary growth E don't know

18 Quickly providing meanings for unknown words while listening or reading

A has little effect on comprehension of the text
B upsets comprehension of the text
C greatly increases the amount of vocabulary learned
D results in little vocabulary learning
E don't know

19 About what percentage of the low frequency words of English comes from French, Latin or Greek?

A 20%
B 40%
C 60%
D 80%
E don't know

20 How many closely related members does a typical English word family have?

A 3
B 5
C 7
D 9
E don't know

21 During writing activities, learners use dictionaries most often to

A check spelling
B look up the meaning of a word
C see if a word exists
D find out about the grammar of the word
E don't know

22 "Retrieval" involves

A receptive learning
B productive learning
C recalling an item
D recognizing that two given items go together
E don't know

23 The sentence "To be or not to be, that is the question" consists of ten

A tokens
B types
C lemmas
D word families
E don't know

24 A "lemma" is a base word and

A all its derived forms
B all its inflected forms
C all its related forms
D all its inflected forms which are the same part of peech
E don't know

25 An "Academic vocabulary" is made up of words that

A are only used in academic texts
B are only used in a specialised field
C are found in a wide range of academic texts
D are found in a wide range of academic and non-academic texts
E don't know

26 How many chunks of information can be held in short-term memory at any one time?

A one
B about three
C about seven
D about ten
E don't know

27 The General Service List of English Words is a list of

A 30,000 words and their frequencies
B the commonest collocations
C 2,000 high frequency words
D words that can be used to define other words
E don't know

28 To test learners' productive knowledge of vocabulary we must get learners to

A produce words in spoken or written sentences
B produce spoken or written forms from a meaning cue
C produce or recognize spoken or written word forms from a meaning cue
D produce a first language translation of words
E don't know

29 Vocabulary tests using different test formats tend to correlate with each other with a correlation around

A 0.3
B 0.5
C 0.7
D 0.9
E don't know

30 Coxhead's Academic Word List contains

A 492 word families
B 570 word families
C 836 word families
D 1,000 word families
E don't know

Answers

1D
2B
3B
4B
5B
6D
7A
8A
9D
10A
11A
12C
13A
14A
15B
16C
17A
18C
19C
20C
21A
22C
23A
24D
25C
26C
27C
28B
29C
30B