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A dictionary is one of the most important tools during your time studying at a university. A good dictionary can help you understand your subject better, improve your communication and improve your grades by making sure you are using words correctly.
A dictionary is among the first things a foreign language learner purchases and most “language teachers believe that dictionaries can assist the learning of vocabulary (Scholfield, 1997). Dictionaries give information on word derivation, meaning, spelling and pronunciation.
In addition to its basic function of defining words, a dictionary may provide information about their pronunciation, grammatical forms and functions, etymologies, syntactic peculiarities, variant spellings, and antonyms.
Almost everything digital is faster; but things quickly learned can be quickly forgotten. Looking up a word in a big, thick book slows you down, encourages you to concentrate long enough to commit the definition(s) you just read to memory, making them a permanent part of your life.
A dictionary can be used to look up the meaning of a word. You can also use a dictionary to check the spelling of a word. Dictionaries may also give other information about words, such as word type and word origin.
1. Nation (2008) points out that dictionary can help the learners in three major ways : 1) They can help learners understand words that they meet in reading and listening. 2) They can help learners find words that they need for speaking and writing. 3) They can help learners remember words.
It’s possible to find dual-language and single-language electronic dictionaries. Some electronic dictionaries even have several different dictionaries loaded inside them. Electronic dictionaries can be useful if they are used well, especially as they often give audio examples for you to check your pronunciation with.
How to use a dictionary effectively
Dictionaries can be really helpful when you are reading because they help you find out the meaning of words you don’t know. However, using a dictionary too much can cause problems with your reading skills.
English dictionaries in Britain
The word “dictionary” was invented by an Englishman called John of Garland in 1220 — he had written a book Dictionarius to help with Latin “diction”. An early non-alphabetical list of 8000 English words was the Elementarie, created by Richard Mulcaster in 1582.
Dictionaries are still good for obscure usages and etymologies. Dictionaries also can arbitrate disputes that arise during a game of Scrabble or late-night conversations. But dictionaries have also failed us in many ways.
The use of a dictionary has different aspects: information, operations, users and purposes. The information can be the meaning of a word, its synonyms, pronunciation, or spelling, the etymology, or it can mean information about certain facts or names etc.
Children’s dictionaries, in particular, are important because they feature age-appropriate vocabulary for your young learner. … When kids leaf through the pages of a dictionary to find a specific word, they also see plenty of other new and interesting words they might not know.
It shouldn‘t be too long: it isn’t reasonable to expect a user to read a long and complex sentence in order to get the point. It should illustrate the word in a context which corpus evidence tells us is typical of the way the word is normally used and the way it normally combines with other words.
A dictionary is a very good place to learn grammar words from because the same words are repeated many times. Copying these words down (or short versions like “n” or “adv”) when you learn new vocabulary can help you learn the vocabulary better and learn the grammar words at the same time.
The main advantages are ease of use, the participants are able to obtain the words’ definitions, pictures, pronunciation, and how the words are used in context. One of the major disadvantages is lack of credibility.
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Start with 20 cards at a time, and have the person ask you to name each word on the card. Say the words out loud to reinforce your memory of each word. Over time, you can have the person speed up how fast they ask you to name each word so you improve your ability to memorize each word quickly and in succession.
The study found that BLD use can effectively facilitate vocabulary comprehension and enhance incidental vocabulary acquisition, suggesting that dictionary use is a more effective strategy of vocabulary learning than contextual guessing.
2. Make Friends with the Dictionary. A dictionary is the first indispensable resource to improve your vocabulary. It’s only by looking up a word in a dictionary that you will learn its precise meaning, spelling, alternate definitions, and find additional useful information about it.
a book, optical disc, mobile device, or online lexical resource (such as Dictionary.com) containing a selection of the words of a language, giving information about their meanings, pronunciations, etymologies, inflected forms, derived forms, etc., expressed in either the same or another language; lexicon; glossary.
Why are dictionaries called dictionaries? One could argue that dictionaries are called as such because they tell the user how to say things. Or you could say that the Latin word dictio means ‘a word’, and so a dictionary might be seen as a compendium of words.
E-dictionaries are easier to use, it allows them to search for meanings faster compared to printed dictionaries. Aside from that, it also helps them to learn about the proper pronunciation of words.
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