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