Skip main navigation

Do you have any questions?

This is your opportunity to ask any questions you still have and to watch the lead academic review some of the key points from the week.
15
Hello everyone and welcome to the week  two video for English for Academic Study.   So, this week we’re going to look at some  different tips. Firstly, we’re going to look at   collocations, so what are they? And  how can you find good collocations?   Secondly, we’re going to look at some vocabulary  logs, so we’re going to think about why you record   vocabulary in a log and then a quick  example of how you can record vocabulary.   Then we’re going to look at a tool to help you  memorise vocabulary. So, we’re going to look   at recording vocabulary and memorising vocabulary  and then finally we’ll look at some different ways   that you can move forward now that  you have finished this course.
72.5
Okay, so let’s get started. First of all,  we’re going to think about collocations. So,   a collocation is a word that goes together well  with another word. So, often, in English, people   use words together that are common, that are used  frequently together. So, when we use a word that   is correct, but is not commonly used with another  word, it sounds very strange to people listening   and makes it difficult for them to understand your  exact meaning. So, using an accurate or precise   collocation, using two words that go well together  is really important for communicating clearly. So, in this example we’re going  to look at the word ‘knowledge’   and we’re going to think about the word  that goes best with ‘knowledge’.
126.3
So,   all of these words ‘get knowledge’,  ‘acquire knowledge’, ‘find knowledge’,   ‘learn knowledge’, they all mean similar  things, ‘get’, ‘acquire’, ‘find’, ‘learn’   all mean similar things, but only one of these  words is commonly used together with ‘knowledge’. So, it’s very difficult to decide which  one because they all look correct,   but we can use some tools to help us decide. So,  the first thing we can use is called the Pearson   Academic Collocation list. So, you can search  for this list using a search engine like Google  
181.2
and you can then look at all of these common  words that go together. So, to make the list,   they took all of the academic texts and searched  for which word went with each component the best.   So, they looked at the word ’abstract’ and they  found that the most common word that went with it   was ‘concept’, ‘an abstract concept’. So, you know  that all of these words go well together but we   want to find out about the word ‘knowledge’,  so what we could do, as with most websites   and text documents, we can press ‘control’  + ‘F’ and we can then search for the word   ‘knowledge’ by typing it in the box here, pressing  enter, and it will find the word ‘knowledge’.
224.6
So, we can see words that go with  knowledge, ‘background knowledge’,  
232.6
‘historical knowledge’, ‘personal knowledge’,  ‘previous knowledge’. So, you can see that there   are a lot of words that go together well with the  word ‘knowledge’. And then we get down to line 32,   ‘acquire knowledge’. It tells us the  part of speech, so we’ve got a verb   and a noun, so we want to do something about  knowledge, acquire knowledge. So that’s the  
260.8
first term we’ve found. So,  we don’t find ‘get knowledge’,   ‘find knowledge’ or ‘learn knowledge’ we  find ‘acquire knowledge’ when we go to the   Pearson Academic Collocation list. But there  are a lot of words and it is very difficult   for you to remember all of them, but you  can search this to find good collocations. There are also a lot of other websites with  collocations, so the Academic Collocation   List on a website called EAPFoundation.com  is good. So, it’s organised a bit differently   to the Pearson Collocations List. So, we  can see straight away when we go down to   the headword and find ‘acquire’ and we get  ‘knowledge’ here.
296.6
Again, it has a lot, it has all   of the academic collocations, but it can be quite  difficult to use. So, I think the best way to use   words that go together well is to notice how  other people use the words together. So, if we go   to the dictionary, I love the dictionary, we  can search for our term ‘knowledge’, maybe we’re   writing an assignment or researching the word  and we can scroll down and find our definition,   but we can also look at the examples. So, these  are good examples the dictionary has found   and we can find our own collocations  here.
346.2
For example, we’ve got ‘detailed’   and ‘knowledge’, ‘a detailed knowledge’, so that’s  a really good collocation ‘detailed knowledge’.   Also ‘without my knowledge’ and here  we’ve got it ‘to acquire knowledge’.  
367.6
So, we now know that ‘acquire’ and ‘knowledge’  go together well because it is an example in   the dictionary. So, all of these are good examples  of phrases or collocations that go well together.
384.1
There’s also a great tool called  The Oxford Collocation Dictionary  
391.5
which you can search for using this address  (https://www.freecollocation.com/). So again,   we can search for the word ‘knowledge’  in the collocations dictionary.   We can see ‘knowledge’ now and adjectives that  go with knowledge like ‘considerable knowledge’,   ‘great knowledge’, ‘vast knowledge’, ‘complete  knowledge’, so if you’ve written, in your   assignment, ‘amazing knowledge’, you can check  that that sounds okay by coming to the collocation   dictionary, typing in ‘knowledge’ and you’ll  see that actually, an adjective that goes with   knowledge, these are much better, like ‘intimate  knowledge’, ‘profound knowledge’, ‘deep knowledge’   but ‘amazing knowledge’? No, we don’t see  that here, because it is not used commonly.
431.4
And then we can look for what we want to find out,   ‘Verb + Knowledge’, so the first verb that goes  with knowledge is ‘acquire’. So, we can check   our work again, ‘acquire knowledge’ yes, that  was the correct word. So, we can quickly check   to see if people do use ‘get’, ‘find’ or  ‘learn’ ‘knowledge’. We can go back to our   collocation list, look for ‘Verb + Knowledge’  so no, not ‘get’ but we have got ‘gain’,   ‘gain knowledge’ and ‘have’, ‘demonstrate’,  ‘flaunt’, ‘parade’, ‘show (off)’, ‘test’, ‘apply’,   so no, we can’t see that in the Oxford Collocation  Dictionary so we need to choose a different word   with the same meaning that goes together with the  word we want to use, ‘knowledge’. So, collocations  
480
are really important when you’re trying to  communicate clearly and precisely in your   discipline and in your assignments so it’s always  worth using tools like this to check you’re using   words together well. So now that we’ve found a  good collocate, so we’ve got ‘acquire knowledge’,   we know it goes together well, we’ve seen it  somewhere, now we’re going to try and record it. So, look at this example from Walden University  Writing Centre and this is a table that a student   has used to record all of the information about  the reading they’ve done for an assignment   and it’s called a reading matrix.
517
So, the student  has chosen different headings to help them   understand what they read and to help them make  links between the different ideas in their reading   so that then they can use this knowledge easily  to write their assignment. So, what we can do is   the same kind of thing for our vocabulary and we  can make a vocabulary matrix, or a vocabulary log.  
546.2
So, it’s up to you how you  organise a vocabulary log   but it’s important that you have a  clear heading for the vocabulary. So,   what type of vocabulary is it? So, in this case  we’re going to record some academic vocabulary.   Maybe when you go to university you will  learn lots of new words about shopping,   or when your socialise with your friends,  you hear a new word and it’s amazing,   you want to write it down and learn about  the word, but you don’t want to mix it up   with your academic vocabulary, so we can  have different headings and different tabs   for the different situations that you heard each  bit of vocabulary in.
584.1
And then it’s up to you,   you need some headings to try and record all of  the information that you find about the word.   So, for our word, we’re just going  to have the word here ‘knowledge’.   Some pronunciation to help us remember ‘/ˈn/ /ɒ/  /l/ /ɪ/ /dʒ/’, the part of speech, so, what type   of word is it? So, this is a noun. A definition,  so we can just take this from the dictionary,   or as you get more confident, you can  write your own definitions based on   the context that you hear the word  in. So, I think it’s really important,   where did you hear this word? If we go back  to this list of words, there are too many!
624.5
So,   the best way is to try and investigate and learn  words that you read or words that you hear. So for this word, maybe you read it in your  assignment brief and the example from the   assignment brief was ‘use your knowledge  of the topic to answer the question’.  
650.2
And then you can find some collocations, so every  time you see the word again, or you hear the word   again try to record the collocation that goes  with that word. So then, like with this table,   you can record all of your new words, all of  the information you find every time you hear   the word or see the word, all of the different  meanings in a table that you can then organise   and record all of the different words from  the different places you hear them. So,   having a vocabulary log is really important but  understanding which words go together well and how   they’re used is also important.
688.6
So when we have a  big vocabulary log with lots of different words,   you need to keep repeating the process, so  when you hear or read a new word you need   to add the new information, but you also need to  try and learn some of this so that it’s ready for   you to use when you’re in a  situation where you need to use it. So, a good way to learn words and sort of  put yourself under a bit of pressure is to   use Quizlet. So, you can make your own set of  cards, or you can search, so I’ve searched for   ‘Academic Vocabulary’ and I’ve found 102 academic  flashcards.
721.1
So, we can take our information from   our log and we can make our own flashcards like  this with the word and then the information about   the word. Here we just have a definition,  so we can click, try to remember the word,   go to the next one, read the definition, try to  remember the word and then when we’re happy, when   we think we’ve learned all of the words, we can  then test ourselves. So, we can play some games,   like a match game here where you just have  to drag the correct definition onto the card,  
764
and it gives you a time and it gives you a score  and you can log in with social media to share how   well you’re doing with your vocabulary.  So, we’ll move on now to the next steps. So, if you’re really happy with the course   and you’re thinking ‘I really  want to study in the UK!’   A good website to find out about opportunities for  studying in the UK is study-uk.britishcouncil.org.   It’s got lots of different information like ‘why  study in the UK?’, ‘finding a university for you’.   This is a great part ‘scholarships and funding’  so you can get help with the fees and then lots of   information about how to apply and things you  should consider when you move to the UK.
804.2
There’s   also the Coventry University website, so if you go  to www.coventry.ac.uk/international-students-hub   you’ll find lots and lots of information, so  all of the courses that we run, how to apply,   how to pay. There are lots of scholarships  again, so scholarships, if you have particular   circumstances, or if you’ve done really well  academically then you can get help with the   fees for studying in the UK. And there’s lots  of information about coming to the UK and then   our site, Pre-sessional English, so you can get  help with your English language, either before   you study if your IELTS score is slightly too low  or you can get help whilst you’re studying from us   as well.
850
There’s also Coventry University Online  where you can look at all of the different types   of courses you can study with us online through  the FutureLearn platform.
856.8
Or you could just go   onto FutureLearn as you know it already and if you  go to the Coventry University page on FutureLearn   (/partners/coventry)  you’ll see all of the different  
877.2
courses you can study with FutureLearn  and Coventry University together online. So, I hope you enjoyed week two of the course,  and I hope you’ve enjoyed the whole course,   I’ve really enjoyed studying with you. Please  keep asking any questions you still have   in the chat and otherwise, good luck in your  future studies and on your journey towards   learning academic English, goodbye for now.
What did you find most difficult this week? Is there anything you’re still unsure about?
If you have any questions about anything we’ve covered this week, now is your opportunity to get some answers. Watch the video above to review some of the key points from the week.
If you have found anything difficult this week you are welcome to ask a question in the comments section below. You should also try to review the relevant steps and read through the comments carefully, especially the ones posted by the course hosts. This will help you to become an independent learner.

Your task

Think about any questions you still have after watching the video and the read through the comments section to see if another learner has already asked or answered your question.
If you still cannot find the answer you should post your question in the comments section below and the course team and other learners will do their best to answer your question as quickly as possible.
Also, if you think you can answer one of your fellow learners’ questions, why not write a reply?
This article is from the free online

English for Academic Study

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Our purpose is to transform access to education.

We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.

We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.

Learn more about how FutureLearn is transforming access to education