The Importance Of Vocabulary Knowledge

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One of the first steps of learning English is learning vocabulary. A person’s vocabulary size is the set of words they know. Having a large vocabulary size is a useful tool for speaking, listening, reading, and writing. A great challenge second language learners’ face is acquiring extensive vocabulary knowledge. There are many different aspects to knowing a word. According to Paul Nation (2013), “At the most general level, knowing a word involves form, meaning and use” (p.48). When evaluating vocabulary knowledge, we must make a distinction to determine whether the knowledge is receptive or productive. Receptive knowledge consists of words that learners understand when they see or hear them; productive knowledge consist of words that learners use and produce to express themselves in…show more content…
According to Moghadam and Zainal (2012), “breadth of vocabulary knowledge is referred to the quantity or number of words learners know at a certain level of language competence while depth of knowledge is a network of links between words”(p.558) It is important to investigate the vocabulary size (breadth of vocabulary knowledge) of second language learners in order to plan effective vocabulary courses. For teachers need to know whether the high frequency words are learned for the purpose of helping them decide what type of vocabulary their students need to learn. Teachers teaching at IEP who are planning curriculum, their main concern at the beginning the semester is the breadth vocabulary knowledge. A simple yet effective starting point is to set reasonable vocabulary learning goals. Before setting goals however, we need to determine what percentage of high frequency words learners know: hence, we are looking for breadth of vocabulary knowledge. Ideally, the test given to learners must be quick to take, easy to mark and easy to interpret. One test that meets these criteria is a vocabulary size test called Yes/No
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