[Corpora-List] Numbers of English vocabulary required for students

TadPiotr tadpiotr at plusnet.pl
Mon Oct 2 11:25:00 CEST 2006


I am afraid that in work like that by Nation we can find the common pitfall
of vocabulary-based word lists: common items have "little lexical meaning",
it is infrequent items which really carry the message (that is why we can
find the topic of a text by automatic retrieval procedures). It is
sufficient to have a look at various vocabulary tests applied to American
students to see that the range of the vocabulary they are expected to have
is enormous, though there are obviously some preferred areas, such as
Latinate and classical items, etc. Have a look at
http://www.vocaboly.com/vocabulary-test/, for example. And there are
hundreds of pages like that.
Best wishes
Tadeusz Piotrowski


> -----Original Message-----

> From: owner-corpora at lists.uib.no

> [mailto:owner-corpora at lists.uib.no] On Behalf Of Jakub Marecek

> Sent: Monday, October 02, 2006 9:07 AM

> To: CORPORA at HD.UIB.NO

> Subject: Re: [Corpora-List] Numbers of English vocabulary

> required for students

>

> Hello folks,

>

> see http://www.infogreta.org/magazine/articles-9-1.htm or one

> of books by Norbert Schmitt if you don't like the 2000

> number. Paul Nation was (supposedly) using corpora of spoken

> English to arrive at the artificially low number of 2000

> while a decent coverage of real written English would (again,

> supposedly) require learning many more words (word families).

>

> Best

> Jakub

>

>

> Brett Reynolds napsal(a):

> > On Oct 1, 2006, at 8:49 PM, Su-hsun Tsai wrote:

> >>

> >> I would like to know how many words of English vocabulary required

> >> for a high school graduate entering a college/university

> program? Do

> >> you have a similar requirement for students entering into

> high schools?

> >>

> > Leaving aside the question of what it means to "know" a word...

> >

> > In Ontario, Canada, I know of no school that gets as specific as to

> > have a minimum number of known words as an entry

> requirement. However,

> > from a practical viewpoint, you should have a look at Paul Nation's

> > work with word families. Paul's results suggests that the 2000 most

> > common word families, plus the 570 word families of Averil

> Coxhead's

> > Academic Word List would be a minimum for most non-native

> speakers of

> > English to begin tertiary education.

> >

> > Best,

> > Brett

> >

> > <http://english-jack.blogspot.com>

> >

> > -----------------------

> > Brett Reynolds

> > English Language Centre

> > Humber Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning

> Toronto, Ontario,

> > Canada brett.reynolds at humber.ca <mailto:brett.reynolds at humber.ca>

> >

> >

> >

>

>







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